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Navigating the Holidays with a Toxic Family: Tips and Tricks

By: Natalie Viglione

· Reclaiming Our Power

Toxic Families and Holiday [Yikes!]

You don’t have to be down with the dysfunction or be coerced to think that dysfunction is actually functioning. It's not!

Dysfunction is not healthy and toxic environments can make you feel like you've stepped into a black abyss. Never feel like you have to devalue who you are to fit in … EVER!

You know, dysfunction that feels and looks, or maybe is, a lot like this:


While that’s a funny take on the awkwardness with funny people, this is a reality for many during the Holidays. Maybe not quite so drastic but the feeling of unhappiness is so thick that you can cut it. The hardest time to remember that you don’t have to accept dysfunction is usually during the crazy, crazy Holidays, what you can call the holidaze.

Not EVERYONE has the wonderful experience to be around families and/or friends that make you feel joy. Which is sad because you can choose who you're around. Sometimes souls don't jive anymore and to reach your highest self you have to cut out some physical surroundings that don't help you evolve. Changing who we are to fit in is the biggest mistake we can make.

For example, maybe you’re around parents or family members in general that don’t even try to have a real relationship with you. I mean how many times can we talk about the weather, or about other superficial things? It gets TIRESOME, right?!

Or, do you get a barrage of guilt-ridden or nasty comments and nothing you do makes them happy? Maybe you're in a marriage and have in-laws that treat you plainly like a big ole’ poop emoji 💩because you’re “different” than them and you feel the iciness.

If you’re one of the many people that thinks you're stuck to deal with that kind of experience during a Holiday Season (or at any point throughout the year) then you need to know you have choices!

Here is some brilliant advice from the amazing, Kute Blackson. I love Kute! By the way, did you catch his two transformational episodes on my podcast? If not, go here for Part 1 and here to listen to Part 2 ASAP to listen up.

Kute hit the nail on the head in his vlog that is below for you to see. I’ve spent the greater part of the last few years building a value system into my life when it comes to who I spend time with, especially family because I believe they should be friends first not “just family."

I’ve spent past Holidays, and many other days throughout some key years, uncomfortable and making myself physically ill because of situations I was trying to fit into. And, you cannot fit a square peg in a round hole. Period.

In some cases, I even tried to open my soul to specific persons to why that dysfunction doesn’t work and why it needs to stop as it hurts others and causes pain, only to be met with blank stares or anger because these are people who, at the end of the day, like and thrive in the dysfunction and don’t want to hear truths or change as they're stuck in self-deprecating loops.

But I was being a victim of my circumstances, when the reality is that I was choosing to be there when that is not what I needed to be doing! Situations where you don't feel aligned and centered, nor respected or valued, are NOT situations you have to be in. It wasn’t until late last year that I finally realized that I can take my power back and I can stop being a victim. Or, more appropriately, minimize the time spent in the situations versus these situations controlling me.

Per Kute’s video message (watch his whole video below) there are three key points to remember to help you thrive this season (and beyond!):

  1. VALUE YOURSELF FIRST! You’re not OBLIGATED to be around anyone (family or otherwise) that make you dishonor yourself. Being in a place where you are not deeply aligned and inspired to be in is not a good environment so if you feel devalued, if you must compromise your soul and be inside a toxic environment, then plainly don’t! Stop it, do not EVER compromise the very sense of who you are to make others feel comfortable. No one can MAKE you do anything, you make your own decisions.
  2. CHOOSE TO HONOR YOURSELF AND THE PEOPLE YOU TRULY WANT TO BE AROUND --  DON’T BE A VICTIM! Give yourself permission to love people that push your buttons but realize you don’t OWE anyone anything, and if you can’t be with them in a physical space because it is not an OK place to be then you must own your power to choose to separate. The act of choosing releases you from being a victim, and allows you to be responsible in that decision. If you choose to go and be around friends and/or family that are misaligned with your soul, OWN the choice to do so and in that you are able to take your power back because you accept the choice and plan accordingly for the situation.
  3. ACCEPT THE PERSPECTIVE. If you get upset and lose your position and control in that reality, remember that you’re trying to change people that won’t change EVER, that is unless THEY choose to. They cannot perceive their dysfunction because they live it every single day, and you do not. But, love yourself enough and do not accept any kind of abuse (control, dominance, guilt, emotionally tearing you down, lack of care or concern and ice-cold attitudes, physical abuse, etc. etc.) and make sure you are fully prepared both mentally and emotionally. Their perception is blocked, but you can be clear in your decision to not accept their dysfunction for yours. 


Thanks, Kute! 😊 Happy Holidays!