So, again, it’s about thinking in advance, “What do I need, what do I want and how do I carve that out given all the other things that are going on?” Which might be wonderful, but you know, too much of a good thing can sometimes become overwhelming and that often can happen in the holidays. So, I think, you know, thinking about what would make it a great holiday time for you and then making sure that you weave that in to the extent that you can.

Another thing is like to have a sense of control because sometimes people feel like they’re out of control because like maybe they’re staying in the home of a family member or friend, so they’re a guest and that’s weird. Think ahead about what you want an experience to be like, like if you’re heading into what you think will be a difficult situation, like maybe it’s a family dinner where there’s like fraught family dynamics. Stay in control of yourself by thinking in advance like, “Well, how do I wanna behave? I can’t control other people, but how do I wanna behave and can I anticipate things that are gonna make it difficult?” Because a lot of times during the holidays when things make us unhappy, we kinda know in advance that that’s likely to happen.

Like we, we’ve had some experience. Like sometimes something happens completely out of the blue like your car breaks down, but sometimes you’re like, “Oh yeah, this happens every year.” So, it’s like, okay, if you know you’re gonna probably argue with this person, maybe you make sure that you sit at the other end of the dining room table or if you know that you will tend to give into too many indulgences if you’re standing right next to the dessert table, maybe you move yourself to the other side of the room. Like you can anticipate the things that might bring you down and then try to, in advance, kind of in the cold reality before you’re in the like the hot situation, think about how you wanna handle it.

One thing I like to think about is treat yourself like a toddler. I always treat myself like a toddler. You don’t let a toddler get too hungry, you don’t let a toddler get too hot or too cold and you know that if you do not treat that toddler right, you will pay and I treat myself like a toddler and I make sure, even if I’m traveling, like especially if there’s like jet lag involved, are you getting enough sleep, are you getting some exercise, are you eating enough healthy food, not letting yourself get so, so ravenous that then you’re just grabbing anything? Thinking about just managing your body as you’re moving out of your usual patterns and habits.

LA: Well, I will definitely be treating myself like a toddler. I-

GR: Oh good.

LA: … adore that approach. [laughs]

GR: As we must. Yes, yeah.

LA: We all deserve to be treated like toddlers this Christmas.

GR: We do, we do.

LA: So, I did Gretchen’s quiz and turns out my type is yes, I guessed it correctly, the rebel. See you on the first Thursday in January as we’re taking two weeks off for the holidays. Dare I say, happy travels? Thank you for listening. I’m Lale Arikoglu and you can find me, as always, on Instagram @lalehannah and follow along with Women Who Travel on Instagram @womenwhotravel. You can also join the conversation in our Facebook group. Allison Leyton-Brown is our composer. Jennifer Nulsen is our engineer. Jude Kampfner from Corporation for Independent Media is our producer. I free you to go to the Met.

GRn: Oh yes. Well, it’s closed today.

LA: Oh god, of course it is closed.

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