I admit it. I am a sucker for this time of year. Once the snow starts falling, the tree is up and the eggnog starts to flow, it can be the very best time of the year. For most of us, the general business of the golf season is wound down, so it can be a great time to sit back and relax.
Yet the holidays can get away from us if we let it. If all we focus on are Black Fridays, Cyber Mondays, and all the shopping days until Christmas eve, it can be easy to lose focus. The marketing machine is in overdrive this time of year and it can be a real struggle not to get swept up in the frenzy of spending.
While I will not claim to have all the answers, here are a few things that make the holidays enjoyable in our neck of the woods:
- Give, Give, Give... but not stuff. Give of yourself, give of your time, give of your talents. Siblings on both sides of my family made the decision a few years back to pool the money that would be allocated for gifts and donate it to a worthwhile cause. It is a great way to give pause and think of those who might be in need and for whom the Christmas season may not be a time of plenty.
- Family first. The best time about this time of year for us is getting together with friends and family. It doesn't need to be much really, just spend time together.
- Take frequent breaks. Try to work in downtime during the holidays. We tell our kids that if they feel overloaded at any given time, just check out. Well that can be good advice for any of us. (my personal favorite is to just sit quietly and watch the lights on the tree)
- Have fun. This season is really all about fun, so make sure you make it a priority. Get outside and go sledding, go to a movie, or head out with the kids and build a fort. No matter what you do it will be worth it.
- Give thanks. We are usually blessed with so much this time of year, so it never hurts to step back and appreciate the bounty. Take a minute and thank all of those people in your life that make a difference. Trust me you will get it back in spades.
So have yourself a Merry Little Christmas, take some time to reflect on what is important, and just relax.
I forgot to mention that I am also a sucker for Christmas tunes (except when they start before Halloween). I have a new one that I stumbled across a couple of years back. Here is a link: