Winter weather, a cozy fire in the fireplace, warm spicy drinks, friends and family sitting around relaxed and enjoying the holiday — sound good? Yes, it sounds wonderful, but in the real work world, things are a bit different.
First, to be off during the holiday is a dream that usually does not happen. Maybe a half a day on Christmas Eve or split shift on Christmas Day. Each year, we say we aren’t going to rush around buying too many gifts and regretting it for the next six months (paying them off!). I saw a program a few months ago about relaxation, keeping control and being happy. The only thing I remember about it was this: The people you love do not want a present from you that you have to spend months paying off. They want to see you moving ahead. They want you to be happy and stress free!
Can we really go back to the old-fashioned idea of giving what we can afford, whether it’s home-made goodies or just some time to someone who needs us? Can we actually just sit down to a great simple meal and be happy and content to be together? What about remembering to share the Christmas story with each other and the little ones who are running about?
Some planning for quietness and calmness might be the answer. So, what if we announce we are spending less on gifts and giving more of ourselves as our work permits? What if we don’t try and “kill ourselves” by fixing every Christmas dish we have ever heard of, only to have most of it leftover and thrown away? What if we aren’t “superpersons”? Will the ones we love and who love us really care about those things?
Everyone needs to do less, give more and love harder during these holidays. It isn’t too late to teach our children the real meaning of this special holiday. Whatever your faith is, there is a story that deserves to be told and retold so it can be passed down through the generations!
It won’t be easy to break old habits we have formed throughout the years, but we change every day, and today is a good time to begin thinking of how you can improve the quality, not quantity of this special time.
Happy holidays and God bless you this season and in the coming New Year!