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How to Forgive and Have a Great Holiday

For many, the holidays mean cherished time spent with friends and family. However, the holidays can also be a great source of stress due to these relationships and the time we're forced to spend with people we might not be on great terms with. Maybe a family member or friend wronged you in some way and now you’re holding a grudge; all communications have been cut off and you’re not looking forward to the awkward silences around the dinner table.

But the holidays should be a merry and peaceful time, so here are a few ways to deal with any sticky situations you find yourself in this holiday season.

Check yourself. If you were the one in the wrong, maybe you need to be the person to apologize. Try and explain the situation to a neutral third party to get an outside perspective but be honest with yourself and act accordingly.

Be open. If you weren’t in the wrong and the person tries to apologize to you, be open and willing to forgive and move on. I’m not saying you have to, depending on the situation, but don’t be stubborn and immovable for no good reason.

Get a mediator if need be. Have the neutral third party from earlier sit with you and this person or people and talk things out. It could be a friend, family member, therapist, or someone from your community.

If the infraction was minor and you’re holding a grudge, take a cue from Elsa from Frozen and let it go. The holidays are a time for happiness and togetherness, and holding onto something tiny just for the sake of being angry does nothing but make you (and you alone) miserable.

If necessary and possible, avoid this person or people. It may not be pleasant, but if it’s for your own safety and sanity, it may need to be done. Try alternative holiday festivities with other friends or family to keep things positive and light hearted. There’s nothing wrong with a belated-Friendsgiving in December!

Forgive yourself. Things happen, and regardless of who is right and who is wrong in the situation, you deserve to be at peace with yourself. Don’t beat yourself up for what could have been done or should have been said - do your best to accept things the way they are.

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Ciarra is a senior fashion student with a penchant for style and technology. She can never say no to a cup of tea and a good book. In her spare time, she enjoys cupcakes, writing, and 3D printing. You can find her on Instagram and Twitter @lefthvnded
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