No offense to Andy Williams, but “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” isn’t exactly an accurate description of the holiday season. In fact, the late singer should have retitled the song to “It’s the Most Stressful Time of the Year.” 

Here’s the thing, though, it doesn’t have to be! With that, we put together a list of helpful tips and tricks to ensure that you have the stress-free Christmas you deserve.

Bite your tongue:

Sometimes, dealing with family, especially in-laws, can be a serious exercise in self-control. Whether it’s an insensitive comment about your weight or differing political opinions, we think it’s best to spare yourself the drama and keep it moving. Would it feel amazing to serve Aunt Carol with a clapback? Absolutely. Is it really worth it? Nope! Curl up on the couch with another glass of wine and call it a day.

Keep the questions flowing:

The easiest way to avoid talking about why you’re single or unemployed or just generally not up to your family’s standards is to ask questions! People love talking about themselves more than anything, remember that.

Leave early:

If you aren’t hosting Christmas this year, we recommend giving yourself plenty of time to get to your destination. After all, there is nothing worse than making your loved ones wait to eat (and they’ll let you know that at least 100 times after you arrive).

“I love it! Thank you”:

This should be your only response to every gift you receive. If you’ve ever wanted to be an actor, Christmas is your time to shine! Go ahead and get your Oscar-winning performance on.

Leave early (again):

Just because it’s the holidays, doesn’t mean you have to push your limits. If you’re full, tired and ready to sleep, say goodbye to your family before you get cranky.

Ask for help:

If you’re hosting, you are 100 percent entitled to ask for help with anything and everything. Don’t feel like you’re bothering people by suggesting that they clean a dish or throw away some wrapping paper. It’s your Christmas, too!

It’s only one day:

Christmas comes but once a year, right? Right! Take a deep breathe and celebrate. If nothing else, you have 364 days to prepare for next year.

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