top of page
  • Writer's pictureP.E.T. South Africa

Parenting in festive times

Families in South Africa are already caught up in the holiday season with celebrations and family gatherings. Amidst the excitement, many parents may also be dealing with the chaos that comes during this time. As we embark on this festive journey, let's explore how we can seek calm with our children to create a peaceful holiday season. After all, we all want to make the most of this time together.

Understanding the challenges and setting realistic expectations

The holiday season brings a whirlwind of activities that can disrupt our children's routines – from late nights and sugar-laden treats to the excitement of visitors and gatherings. Recognising these challenges is the first step towards finding calm. Discuss plans and activities with your children in advance, preparing them for potential changes in routine. Also, consider establishing a bedtime routine during the holidays to provide a sense of stability, promoting better rest and overall well-being. By involving them in the decision-making process, you empower them and reduce anxiety associated with uncertainty.

Prioritise open communication

Communication is the cornerstone of effective parenting, and the holiday season is no exception. Establish open and honest communication channels with your children to understand their feelings, concerns, and expectations during this time. Create an environment where they feel safe expressing themselves without fear of judgment.

Use Preventative I-Messages

Dr. Thomas Gordon's concept of I-messages is a powerful tool for maintaining calm and resolving conflicts. Instead of waiting for tensions to escalate, use preventative I-messages to express your own feelings and concerns proactively.

Balancing celebrations and rest

Finding the right balance between festive celebrations and maintaining regular routines is crucial during the holidays. Prioritise rest to prevent overstimulation, but avoid being too rigid, as excessive routine focus may lead to anxiety. Stay flexible, especially during this season, and be open to adapting plans when needed. Dr. Thomas Gordon's P.E.T. principles highlight the importance of collaborative problem-solving within the family, fostering a sense of teamwork.

This holiday season, let's prioritise connection with our children. By incorporating Dr. Thomas Gordon's Parent Effectiveness Training principles, we can navigate the hustle and bustle with open communication, preventative I-messages, and a commitment to understanding our own and our children's needs. In doing so, we create lasting memories of joy and harmony that will carry us into a refreshed and renewed new year.

Learn more about our parenting course:


 Disclaimer: The information contained in this communication is not to be construed as medical advice. Consult a professional on any medical or psychological concerns. The articles and blogs are posted only as opinion or ideas, and are general in nature. The administrator takes no responsibility for any action or outcome a reader may make as a result of reading a post.


bottom of page