It\u2019s that time for holiday gatherings and you can\u2019t avoid that pesky aunt or fail to talk to that jealous cousin. Here\u2019s how to save the chaos for later With the rise of mental illnesses and other related issues many people believe the best way to keep a peaceful mind is by cutting off every one who brings you problems. Which in many ways is true, especially when it is a toxic situation. But what happens when it concerns a family member? You can\u2019t cut yourself off from them forever. Especially during the Christmas holiday when it is time for family get-togethers. \u201cMy extended family has already started making phone calls that they will be spending the Christmas holiday with us. I wish they did not have to come because I am expectant and some of them already made a big deal out of it when we met earlier. So it\u2019s going to be hard for me. But if it goes down it goes down, I am not planning to tolerate any disrespect from anyone this time,\u201d says Grace Wanjiru.\u00a0 Maintain peace For Buku wa Bukuro, the Christmas holidays or even any other family gathering normally get off hand because of his sister-in-law who doesn\u2019t like to cooperate with the rest of the family. \u201cIt is almost like she doesn\u2019t want to be around, so she looks for every reason and excuse not to come home. But even when she comes, she doesn\u2019t act like the rest of the women folks\u2014she says she can\u2019t cook ugali for the whole family. We try to keep the peace, but most people gossip about her behind her back. She has cost our brother a lot. We even doubt whether the marriage will last, but since she is his choice, we respect it,\u201d says Buku. Stanley Warui says Chrismas is no time to try sorting out any problems, as this may ruin the whole Christmas mood. \u201cWe have two family members, who are known not get along. We try as much as possible to retain the happy atmosphere and don\u2019t leave them alone for too long. Around other people, they have to flow with the mood. The rule is to get through the family time in peace and if there is anything to sort out, you can do it at your own time away from home. Sarcasm and satire are all allowed though,\u201d he says.\u00a0 For 26-year-old Salim Moyo, the only way anybody in his family would bring up a feud is if they are asking for forgiveness and seeking peace. Other than that, Christmas is an understanding time where you have to tolerate everyone regardless of how you feel about them. \u201cMy family is a mix of all people from all tribes, races and religion. The rule is to never ever show it that we have a problem. We have been away from each other the whole year and the holiday is not that long. So, no matter what the problem is, you can sort it out at your own time after the holidays, so our happy time is not wasted on your problems. You can pretend and get along if you must for the sake of the rest,\u201d says Moyo. Expert take To get through this holiday without feeling too bumpy on that frenemy, psychologist, Fiona Atieno, suggests having lit interaction and delegate duties everyone can perform for example; a trip to the grocery, baking cake, making traditional drinks\u2014anything to keep them occupied enough. Keep the interactions as minimum and pleasant as possible. Secondly, prepare yourself for the worst. If you have a relative who has a problem with alcohol, limit its circulation or have a specific time when children or older relatives won\u2019t be exposed to any kind of profanity and misconduct. \u201cAlso, avoid topics that in the past have brought about strong emotions and are known to be a no-go zone. And be ready for a lazy relative who may not assist or even bring anything to the table,\u201d says Fiona. Regulate your emotions to avoid a flare up. According to Fiona, when you start to feel angry or highly irritated, it is your cue to leave the presence of said individual, take a glass of something and take deep breathes. \u201cWhen you maintain your cool, you can handle situations well irrespective of the other person\u2019s response,\u201d she adds. The other important thing would be to invite another guest who has a great relationship with the individual, but still has loyalty to you. This will help take the relative off your hands. \u201cBattles are all about strategy. Keep a paradoxical reaction. Simply overindulge the person. Although the outcome may not be 100 per cent successful all the time, it is sure to leave your relative perplexed and even in good spirits. Enough to keep out of your way until the holiday ends. They doesn\u2019t last forever,\u201d adds the psychologist.