Christmas, Christmas, Christmas!
Who wants it, who needs it and who couldn't care less?
The truth is, yes there's some who love the celebrations and festivities but there's also a great many people who find Christmas highly stressful and a huge pressure. It's all very well to say to those dislikers, 'don't be a Scrooge, change your attitude' but is it that easy? When a large percentage of the world celebrates Christmas, it can feel alienating to be different.
Some people live alone with few visitors calling in while others are going through illness and many are experiencing financial challenges. Christmas can be a particularly difficult time for a large percentage of the population.
So why don't more people simply just say no to participating in Christmas?
Saying no can cause people to feel all sorts of feelings like guilt, shame and fear (of being reprimanded and not fitting in to the norm). It takes self awareness and a good dose of courage to say no to things society says we 'should' love. If you love it, great, have fun and enjoy but if it's not to your liking and doesn't fit with your values, it's perfectly ok to say no and decline participation. It's not a rule to love Christmas, it's just a tradition and you can still love the meaning behind it without being an active part of the madness.
I don't like Christmas one little bit and I've been saying no to it for around 30 years. I don't like the over commercialism, the greed, the manic pace at which most people seem to operate in the lead up to the 'big day' and I especially don't like the competitive 'I spent a lot of money on your gift so I expect a good one in return' type attitude that often prevails. I dislike the hypocrisy equally. People complaining about how busy they are and how much money they 'have' to spend while running around buying gifts for people they don't see all year and sometimes don't even like! Keeping traditions because of obligation, sadly, is anything but loving.
Surely if Christmas was an authentic occasion, wouldn't it be about peace?
Wouldn't it be about truly caring and not fake affectations?
Wouldn't it be a time for gentleness and generous giving of one's time and love?
Love doesn't arrive in the form of Christmas decorations or lavish gifts but it does show up in genuine caring about others, our planet Earth and the animals who dwell here.
Will your Christmas be kind and caring for you and your family and the wider community?
Let's be mindful, make wiser and more compassionate choices and ensure Every Day Gets Better.