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How To Deal With Family During The Holidays

How To Deal With Family During The Holidays

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As a job seeker, it can be hard to deal with family during the holidays. If you’re in the middle of a FRUSTRATING job search, the last thing you want is for Aunt Betty Lou to ask you, “So, how’s the job search going?” So, how are you going to respond when your family inevitably badgers you about being unemployed?

Instead of pulling your hair out or avoiding family events, know what to do! Here are some tips that will help you deal with family during the holidays:

Move away from the subject.

When you’re visiting with family members you haven’t seen in awhile, you might run into that uncomfortable conversation regarding your current “situation.” Instead of grinding your teeth and getting upset, acknowledge the question and then politely move away from the subject.

Understand they’re asking because they care.

After being asked about your job search for the hundredth time, it can be hard to remember that your family is only asking because they care about you. They just want to help! So, even if it’s hard, be patient and treat them with respect.

Make them feel helpful.

Again, remember that your family just wants to help you out. However, they might not know how they can do that. So, find ways to make them feel helpful. Think about what they specialize in and ask them for advice.

Keep it short and positive.

Craft a brief, to-the-point response that will satisfy your family. If you don’t keep your response short and upbeat, your family might go into problem solving mode, making your life miserable. Beat them to the punch and have a response ready to go. You can say something like, “My job search is going great! Thanks so much for asking. I’m following a detailed plan and I’m applying to a few companies I’m super excited about.”

Set boundaries.

If you don’t want to talk about your job search, make that clear. If you’re asked about it, you can say something like, “I appreciate your concern, and I will definitely take your suggestions into consideration. However, I’d rather not discuss my job search today. Instead, I’d love to talk about other things happening in the family… like Mandy’s wedding!”

Now you know how to deal with family during the holidays! Go into those holiday parties prepared. Know what you’re going to say and how you’re going to handle the situation.

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Ariella Coombs Ariella is the Content Strategist and Career Coach for Work It Daily. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a B.A. in journalism. Follow her @AriellaCoombs or find her on Google+.