Tips to help you take charge this Christmas and be assertive in the face of all the loved ones asking for your time
Generally speaking, it can seem that men are naturally assertive – they want something, they take it or they have no qualms asking for it.
Women, on the other hand, may feel the need to be diplomatic, they may feel guilt, the need to consider others’ feelings or may fear being called aggressive or bitchy.
While this difference between the genders may be placed as just a piece of the bigger picture of inequality or social stereotypes, here’s how you can be assertive this Christmas so you can take control of your self and your choices.
How to be more assertive this Christmas
Nice guys finish last
Constantly taking into account other people’s feelings or needs may be nice and considerate however you may also find that your needs and wants come in last.
This can then leave you with unhealthy coping mechanisms like emotional eating in the face of stress and other negative events.
Self-care is such an integral component in being healthy and leading a positive lifestyle.
If you think this sounds selfish, chances are you’ve gotten so used to putting others before yourself, you’ve lost a sense of how important you are.
This Christmas if the build-up with the present buying, cleaning, planning, and cooking are becoming overwhelming and stressful, don’t ask for permission to have a break, just take it!
Don’t give in, compromise
How many times have you given in to other people’s demands and wishes because you’ve found yourself too scared to say no or not wanted to rock the boat?
Being assertive involves having courage and strength to hold your own, qualities you may not believe you possess.
Think about the things you have done to lose weight, you’ve made conscious choices in your life for the better – believe it or not, this takes strength and courage!
Instead of trying to cook for multiple families plus clean the house all by yourself, delegate cleaning jobs to your partner and kids. Let them know that if they do the cleaning up and you will take care of the cooking.
If you find yourself faced with the task of cooking a Christmas meal for multiple families, ask guests to bring some food to help contribute, and you’ll take care of the main elements of the meal, like turkey, ham or desserts.
If healthy eating saboteurs are trying to force you to eat something you know you’ll regret later, diplomatically tell them no!
Whatever your situation this Christmas, don’t cave in! Set your own terms then be prepared to compromise but don’t stray too far from your conditions.
You can’t please everyone
Some women try to please everyone and find themselves stretched so thin, they start to crumble under the strain.
Once you put yourself first and set your own terms, people may accuse you of being selfish or find fault in what you do. These are the people who are toxic in your life and who’s opinion you could do without.
It’s impossible to please everyone, the only people you need to consider is yourself and your immediate family.
So if you suggest to the family to bring some food along to share and some people have an issue with that, let them know it’s unrealistic for you to cook for so many people by yourself and take care of your children at the same time.
If they don’t want to contribute by bringing some food, perhaps they should reconsider their attendance or arrive after the meal is finished for dessert.
It may sound harsh and people will most likely talk about you, but you can’t please everyone and nor should you try to.
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