Notice your behavior changes when you spend time with family. For example, do you try to please everyone? Do you spend time criticizing others? Do you:
- Overeat or drink too much
- Gang up on certain members of your family
- Over do and then feel resentful
- Use all your energy trying to make others happy
- Isolate and feel sorry for yourself
- Become a victim or martyr
One way to identify self-defeating patterns of behavior is to review your past and make a list of your regrets and old resentments. For example, did you spend a lot of money, only to realize you're in debt? Did you knock yourself out cooking/preparing/planning, only to feel unappreciated and disappointed?
Step Three: Identify Your Emotions
Look at the common emotions you feel during family get-togethers. Do you feel:
Once you identify the feeling, close your eyes and ask yourself: "When have I felt this feeling before?" Make a list of all of the times when you felt this way. As you consider each experience, ask yourself: "What did I make this experience mean about me?"