Christmas-time can be extremely stressful, so a little thought beforehand about managing your expectations - and those of your guests - will go a long way to making things more harmonious.
Each family member will behave like they do every Christmas. Don’t set yourself up for disappointment and expect that it will be any different this year, because it almost certainly won’t be!
If you are "having" to invite family members that you don't particularly get on with, don't let your attitude towards them cloud the day for you and your other guests. Endeavour to be as kind as possible and allow them to have their say without going into reaction or over-thinking their comments.
Don't be a martyr on the day and become frazzled and upset behind the scenes because you feel you have to do it all. Accept help with gratitude. Involving others in the preparation, cooking, serving and clearing-up helps you just as much as it helps them to feel useful and a proper part of the day. Consider too that they might otherwise see you as the perfect host and when it's their turn next year they are terrified of not matching up to your high standards!
Do enlist the help of your partner, children and close family before the big day so that the responsibility of the day is shared - including the management of awkward moments, uncomfortable conversations and alcoholic over-indulgence!
Do set out to enjoy your day. Manage it with love, self-compassion and understanding and remember to give thanks for everything that is going well rather than concentrating on the things that aren't.
Happy Christmas and blessings of love, joy, compassion, abundance, health and well-being for 2019.