Holidays can be a stressful time for families. Wouldn’t it be nice this holiday season if you could find a way to make the family time more enjoyable?
In my experience, families are usually pretty complicated. They involve a long history of experiences that are difficult to simply ignore.
Yet, there is a way to make family time more palatable.
Curiosity, humility and a warm heart can make for a more enjoyable experience. Please let me expound.
Curiosity is about simply asking questions and being genuinely interested in the other person’s life. Remember, this doesn’t mean you have to totally agree with everything someone is doing. You don’t have to absolve them from some of their missteps in life. This simply means that you bring an open, curious mind to learn about their life. Here’s what that might look like:
- How are things going for you?
- Has there been anything exciting going on in your life?
- Do you have any new or exciting plans for the upcoming year?
- How are things going in your work or your family?
When you can get people talking about themselves and their lives it can be a nice way to foster communication and connection.
Humility is about a genuine belief and understanding that everyone including yourself is trying to find their way in this life. Humility is about not judging yourself better than others. Humility is about realizing you are flawed just as everyone else is flawed.
It’s tempting in the family setting to begin to compare yourself to others or judge yourself as better than, more hard-working than, etcetera, etcetera.
When you can be humble and realize that everyone in the family is trying to find their way, you will be surprised how people might react to you.
When you can add a warm heart to humility and curiosity, I really believe you can have more enjoyable relationships and a more enjoyable life. It is easy to develop a hardened heart based upon so many of the trials and tribulations we face in our lives.
Developing and maintaining a warm heart takes a certain amount of focus and dedication. When you can model a warm heart in a family, you can be a leader and contribute to that behavior being contagious as a family.
Try to Enjoy the Moment
As you go into this holiday season, step back for a moment and think about how you want to show up with the family. At the end of the event, evaluate yourself and see how you did.
Be a Leader
All great families need leaders. Whether you are in a formal leadership role in the family or not, be a leader by your own personal mindset and behaviors.
Play to your potential!
Pete Walsh offers family business consulting services, workshops, tools and resources as the founder of the Family Business Performance Center. Subscribe to his newsletter or get in touch to get actionable insights to help your family business grow for generations to come.