Being Zen In Family Gatherings: Your Ultimate Guide

Being zen in chaos of a family gathering

If you think you are enlightened, go and spend a week with your family.

— Ram Dass

Aah…family celebrations! The time to be close with people that love you and want the best for you. Good food, great company, and a few too many drinks. Oh, and the chance to get interrogated about your life by the people well-versed in all your triggers. It seems that being Zen at family gatherings might take a miracle.

Yet, it’s actually the perfect environment to practice mindfulness. Think of it as combat training for your mind. Finding stillness amongst the chaos will help hone your mindfulness tools. Moreover, it’ll give you the ease of mind to start enjoying family gatherings.

So, how do you practice cutting through all he noise?

Your Roadmap For Being Zen At Family Gatherings

Here are the top 7 tips for being Zen at family gatherings, courtesy of

Check in with your body and breath

As excitement builds up, it’s helpful to check in with your body for tension and stress. So, take a few deep breaths focusing on the sensation in your belly. This will help you get centered and come back to presence.

Notice your self-centeredness

It’s easy get caught up in heated discussions and start focusing on the “I”. For example, what we want, how we should be treated and how we want others to act. But, staying focused on ourselves prevents us from letting go of frustration and irritation. Shifting our attention outward will help break the cycle.

Ask: What does this person need?

Try putting yourself in the other person’s shoes. What are the pains and frustrations they are experiencing? How can you help address them and bring the discussion in a helpful and caring direction?

Watch your thoughts arise

Take an outsider’s view as your thoughts come and go. Observe them with curiosity. How are these thoughts arising? What are their motivations? Picture the thoughts as passing clouds in the sky.

Let go of control

Stress often comes because we are resisting what’s happening around us. Furthermore, we want to take control of our surroundings and environment. But, control is just an illusion. We can only control our own reaction. So, practice letting go and surrendering to the experience around you.

Make this task your universe

Allow yourself to be present in what you’re doing and make the moment everything. And realize that the errands you have to run tomorrow, that email you forgot to send or the unpaid bill on your desk can all wait. Allow yourself to get immersed in the moment and experience it with all your senses.

Practice appreciation

Our minds are masters at finding ways reality doesn’t live up to our expectations. But, the truth is, things are pretty amazing the way they are. Turn your attention to the things that you are thankful for. It could be an exchange of warm words with your aunt or getting the extra large slice of cake. So, choose to make gratitude your focal point.

You don’t need to practice all these at once. But, you can use them to create small moments of Zen at your next family gathering. These small vacations for you mind will help you find enjoyment and create harmony with your loved ones. For 3 more tips on being Zen at family gatherings, see the full article (3 minute read).

Enjoyed Reading This Article? Sign Up For Our Newsletter.

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe at any time.