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Meet the Underminer, our new BFF from yoga. Just before class we were talking about how no one wants to admit that stress really helps keeps the weight off this time of year (that was his point actually) and about how we’d been really into Buddhist practices for dealing with family. He had these really great suggestions for “improving the level of familial communication” that we hadn’t thought of—so they’re below—plus lots of tips for getting so much better at yoga (see the video, below).

Your sister is a total drama queen. How to stop her in her tracks before she blows up X-mas. And steals your limelight.
“Hey! Are you OK? No, I know you’re smiling it’s just that you seem sort of energetic like you had a lot of sugar, and I don’t want you to turn the corner and suddenly get all sad. NO. I just remember how that happens to you, like after something exciting happens. Like the prom. Or when you lost your virginity on a golf course.”

Your siblings all have more conventionally successful careers, but you are way fitter, which no one seems to think is a notable accomplishment. How to cut them down to size by pointing out their physical failings.
“Phew! That was a great 5-mile run. What have you been doing?  Getting your drink on? Ugh, you must be SO TIRED after such a long week makin’ money. That is SO GREAT about your career! Super amazing excellent! I want to hear all about it. I am just going to sit here comfortably in virasana pose while you tell me alllll about your amazing life.”

Once again your mom is cooking a ton of food, and you want to stay true to your healthy eating habits and your size 4 jeans or you will go back to the city and hate yourself for it.
“OMG, this all looks so good. I see you’ve really thought about the menu. I’ll have to cross-reference this with the Forbidden Foods list I keep on my fridge to be sure, but I think I see almost every form of carbohydrate represented. Oh, is this that Ezekiel bread knock-off that’s cheaper because it uses processed grains but the same package? Clever way to pinch pennies. But seriously, I am just going to have some small portions so we can save this for your sister’s family from the Midwest. They will eat it up!”

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