Christmas can be a stressful time of year, especially if you are cooking for and entertaining your in-laws (or potential in-laws!).
We’ve teamed up with Zoosk.co.uk and Jo Hemmings, a relationship coach and psychologist, to help ensure that your Christmas day runs smoothly, with tips on how you can impress your romantic partner’s parents and win them over.
Don’t Strive for Perfection
Christmas can be a stressful and tiring time – however much time and effort you have put into preparing for it, as the mix of a romantic partner, family, friends and loved ones can be unpredictable. But it’s also your time to enjoy the festive period too, so it’s better to relax and try to create a convivial atmosphere rather than to attempt to run to an exacting schedule or to be too demanding on yourself to make it ‘perfect’.
If your in-laws are spending Christmas with you, it’s easy to get anxious about everything running smoothly so that you make the best impression on them. Preparation is key to avoiding anxiety – as indeed is expecting the unexpected – so try not to over complicate your Christmas meal – it doesn’t have to be Michelin star standard to be delicious and enjoyable!
Make Love, Not War
In spite of our best intentions, we all know that arguments can happen over Christmas – whether with your romantic partner or your family. If sensitive topics threaten to rear their heads, try changing the subject before anyone can get stuck into the kind of wildly differing opinions that can cause unnecessary upset. Accept that sometimes it’s part of your role to act as peacemaker, so be ready to diffuse any potential spats with a game that you can all play or a movie you can watch on DVD.
Keep Calm and Cook On
Cooking Christmas dinner may seem like a ‘once a year’ ordeal, but reminding yourself that it’s just a glorified Sunday roast at the end of the day, can take the pressure off. Get those potatoes peeled, sprouts trimmed and stuffing made the day before and jot down a few timings for the big day itself, so that the meal can come together as simply and as stress free as possible.
Be Inclusive, Not Exlcusive
You will never ‘do’ Christmas in exactly the same way as your in-laws, whether it’s a different recipe for your gravy, the timing of the meal itself or your organisation of the festive season. Remember it’s not a competition, we all have our own style and way of doing things, and while it’s part of the festive season to be as accommodating to our guests as possible, don’t be afraid of asking them for help in preparation, tidying up or serving the meal. Most people like to get involved – sometimes it’s the feeling that they’re a bit superfluous to needs that can make your in-laws seem grouchy!
Zoosk.co.uk is the romantic social network that helps members create and share their romantic journeys, with millions of members from around the globe enjoying the service each month. Features include Couple Profiles – a dedicated place for couples to create, store and share relationship milestones and memories on a joint profile with their friends.
Have you any tips on impressing your in-laws? Let us know by commenting below or tweeting us @FemaleFirst_UK
Cara Mason @cara_mason