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There you are, minding your holiday business when someone’s dysfunction crashes into
your spirit. There’s a lot of Grinches and Scrooges out there and they have the potential
to rub off on you if you can’t set healthy boundaries. There are a lot of reasons why
people aren’t at their best during the holidays, but their bad mood doesn’t have to affect
you when you are ready, willing, and able to set boundaries and protect yourself from
their negativity.

Here are the steps you need to set healthy boundaries for a joyful season

Step 1. Be aware– Some people are going to be negative. Be aware. Be on the alert for
people who have bad attitudes. Keep your radar up and recognize them quickly.
Recognizing someone is negative or draining can help you set up your boundaries
quickly.

Step 2. Have a plan– Prevention is worth more than the cure. That means it’s easier to
prevent a problem than it is to overcome it once you’re in it. Having a plan for dealing
with difficult people ahead of time helps. If you encounter a mean person during check
out in the store, resolve not to take it personally or match their mood. Have a plan to be
kind no matter what. You may even help make their day better with your bright attitude.

Step 3. Work the plan– It’s one thing to have a plan and another to work it. When people
test your boundaries it’s sometimes hard to stay calm and use your plan.
Practice makes perfect. The more intentional you are about setting healthy boundaries,
the easier it will be. People will push up against your limits, but it’s worth it to stick to
your plan. Don’t allow negative people to affect or infect your holiday spirit.

Here are some simple boundaries that can help make your season joyful

Boundary- No gossip. Keep your holiday gatherings positive by refusing to gossip about
other people or negative situations.

Boundary- No guilt. Keep your joy this holiday by refusing to feel guilty when you need
to decline an invitation or choose not to participate in an activity.

Boundary- No reactions. It’s unrealistic to think someone won’t be confrontational or
challenge your boundaries. Keep calm and remember you are not responsible for how
someone else reacts to you. You are responsible for your own behavior. Staying calm
and rational is always the best way.

Sometimes finding the joy in the season is intentional. There are a lot of people who are
void of holiday spirit and that can cause problems. Hold and keep strong boundaries to
protect yourself and help keep your holiday spirit intact.