As we snuggle in front of the TV this holiday season we could be increasing our emotional intelligence. Our couple and parenting experts believe there are valuable life lessons to be learned from Christmas movies.
1. Love is all around
After a difficult year, it’s time to show all the significant people in your life some love. Seasonal favourite, Love Actually, demonstrates how love comes in all guises – romantic, unrequited, sibling, parental and of course, friendship. Remind yourself of the many important relationships in your life and use the Christmas break to nurture these connections.
2. Parenting matters
Busy parents might reflect on the consequences of less-than-perfect parenting in a whole host of Christmas movies. It’s hard to watch The Grinch without concluding he ‘stole Christmas’ because of childhood trauma, the parental neglect in the Home Alone movies leads to utter chaos and the fatherly regret of Jack Frost may be all too familiar for busy working dads. These films all conclude that Christmas is about love, not consumerism, so give your kids plenty of attention, as well as presents.
3. Risks might pay off
If you’re still in search of ‘the one’ you could be inspired to take a few risks after watching modern classics like The Holiday, Sleepless in Seattle and Nativity. While you might not be ready to book a holiday alone, fly across the country to find a stranger you heard on the radio or reach out to an ex-partner you thought was lost forever, these films show that if you push outside your comfort zone, wonderful things can happen.
4. Communication is crucial
Misunderstandings are a mainstay of festive movies and White Christmas provides us with a perfect example of crossed wires. Romance is almost derailed by a misconstrued phone call resulting in a sudden departure. If Betty had simply asked Bob what was really happening before rushing off to New York, she could have saved herself a whole lot of trouble.
5. Blended families take work
The festive season shines a spotlight on divorced and separated couples - and their children. Stepfamilies can be hard to navigate and StepMom shows the highs and lows of this challenging process. Mum, Susan Sarandon and new wife, Julia Roberts, show us that it’s possible to develop a supportive friendship when you put children first.