#74 – 8 Phrases to Help You Keep the Peace During the Holidays

Here in the US, we’re officially in the holiday season! But do you feel like the abundance of opportunities to spend time with people are actually stressful obligations? You may find yourself in a reactive (rather than responsive) mode, or feeling triggered or baited. I’d like to give you eight phrases that you can pull out to help you get through this potentially challenging season.

Biggest Takeaways From Episode #74:

  • During the holiday season, it’s easy to end up reacting rather than responding. These eight phrases will help you survive the holidays while maintaining your peace and your connection with others.
  • The first of the eight phrases (and my favorite!) is simply, “I hear you.” It may feel stiff at first, but it will feel natural as you practice. This works particularly when others talk about their political views.
  • A powerful strategy when someone says something directly hurtful to you is simply to say “ouch.” Don’t expand on it or make accusations; just say “ouch” and leave it at that.
  • Here are the other options: smile and nod your head, or say one of the following: “You could be right,” “that’s interesting,” “I’ll have to think about that,” “I’m so curious about what brought you to that conclusion,” or “tell me more about that.” Tune into to learn when and how to use each!

Highlights from Episode #74:

In This Episode:

  • Welcome to the episode! Vicki mentions some of the struggles of the holiday season, and explains that she’ll provide eight phrases to help you through. [00:39]
  • Vicki goes into more depth about feeling baited, and how to handle it. [02:24]
  • We hear the first of the eight phrases for getting through the holidays, which is Vicki’s go-to option. [04:53]
  • The next option is to just smile and nod your head. The third is the multipurpose statement “you could be right.” Next up are “that’s interesting” and “I’ll have to think about that.” [07:47]
  • Vicki shares the sixth and seventh phrases that you can use throughout the holidays. [11:01]
  • Last but not least is the word “ouch.” Vicki gives an example of how to use this tool. [13:38]
  • Vicki recaps the eight phrases that she has covered in this episode, and shares another phrase that might work depending on the region. [17:31]
  • We hear about the role of self-care in a peaceful holiday season, and learn an important question to ask yourself when you’re tempted to react instead of respond. [19:46]

Links and Resources:


Hi, I'm Victoria!

I love guiding my clients on a journey of Returning to the authentic truth of who they are, Reclaiming what is theirs, and Receiving everything that is meant for them.


  1. Joy on November 28, 2019 at 9:22 am

    I still didn’t learn what to say today when a person says, how are you?
    I don’t want to lie! I don’t want to get into it……
    What do you suggest?

    • Vicki Tidwell Palmer on December 10, 2019 at 9:57 am

      I hear you Joy! You want to answer the question in an honest way. What would be true for you?

    • John on December 19, 2019 at 7:39 am

      This question used to bother the heck out of me! After many, many years in recovery, I love to be asked how I’m doing. Some of my answers are, “top of the world”, “man, if life were any better I’d probably get arrested!”, “I’m on top of my shoes!”, and so many more! The truth is that I have learned how to be grateful for the life I have and it shows up everywhere I go. If I’m having a down day I can express that truth as well. I just say the truth maybe something like, “overall I’m doing well, but today I seem to be cranky”, or “my life is great but for some reason, I’m feeling sluggish today”, etc.
      Hope this helps.

  2. louis gonzales on June 26, 2020 at 10:05 am

    Vickie, I’ve just completed my first book on adolescent addiction and have used some of your work. First, I need permission, second, I need permission. the book is titled: Master or Martyr: Brief Interventions Home-Based program for parents struggling with adolescents experimenting with drugs and alcohol and how to get them to STOP (And What to do when you can’t). I would be honored if you were to offer a positive comment for my book cover. If I sent the 10 excerpts for a flavor would it be okay?

    • Vicki Tidwell Palmer on June 30, 2020 at 5:11 pm

      Hi Louis, thanks for your interest in using my work in your book. Since this is a copyright issue, please use the Contact form here to send me an email so that we can get you information about copyright use.

  3. Laiba on July 5, 2021 at 11:26 am

    Mam if my frenemies body sham what can I do ? Plzz reply

    • Vicki Tidwell Palmer on July 5, 2021 at 8:10 pm

      Ouch, that’s painful. The most important questions are how do I feel with this person, do I want to spend time with them, and for what reason do I want to spend time with someone who shames me?

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