Hello from beautiful Montana:
This is a time of family togetherness and a lot of different personalities to contend with. If you have been disappointed by strained relationships with members of your family or you anticipate difficult conversations, you may actually create your reality.
Every relationship is different, don’t allow tension or difficulty with one person undermine your intentions. You have the ability to be a good friend, kind neighbor and loving family member.
Recognize That Your Perceptions Color the Issue
Most relationships come from two different perceptions and basis of knowledge. We bring into every meeting, not only our current self, but our former experiences and judgments. Each conversation and interaction will be influenced by our behavioral style, self esteem, prejudices, likes, dislikes and information gathered by inference or by talking to others.
Black or White?
As you know, I am a parent educator and a tool I use is a sheet of paper that is black on one side and white on the other. When I show the black side I ask the audience what color the paper is, they answer loudly “Black.” Then I turn the paper over and ask what color the paper is and they answer, hesitantly “White.”
It really depends on where you are and what you see when you make a judgement. The paper is actually both black and white. It is only a perception and a point of view. If you are looking at one side it is black, the other side is white and can quickly be changed by looking at it from another viewpoint.
Recognize that each relationship is different and that each person is an individual with unique qualities and personality traits. You don’t have to love or even like someone, but you do need to respect them, if you want to have a working relationship.
Judy Helm Wright aka Auntie Artichoke, family relationship author and keynote speaker