How are you handling the pre-Christmas hype this year? Are you tired of it yet? Wishing that Christmas was in the past, already?
To me, that is the sad reality produced by the glut of advertising foisted upon us this time of year. Every business that you can think of—and even some that you never would—all seem to be having Christmas sales, and are begging for your hard earned cash.
I can only shake my head as I watch commercial after commercial, the announcers/actors feverishly pitching everything under the damn sun—and funeral plots too, so I guess you can include everything under the damn ground, as well.
Really? Yes, I kid you not. Take advantage of XYZ Cemetery’s special Christmas sale! Act now, and we’ll throw in a plot for one offspring of your choice at 50% off! Okay, it wasn’t quite that ghoulish, but you get the idea. Please, you want to scream, make it stop!!
If you’re wondering if there’s anything we can do to counter this assault on our psyches, and to get back the joy—the real true joy of Christmas, I have good news for you. The answer is yes!
The first thing you need to do is to turn down the commercials. If you have a PVR I strongly suggest recording some of the programs you watch, and then fast-forward past those annoying spots. Or, better yet, turn off the television altogether. Have a family game night, or two. Listen to music. Everything in life is a choice, isn’t it? So choose not to allow yourself to be inundated with the horrible hype of the season.
Now, you want to get some of that wonderful feel-good Christmas spirit in your heart? There’s an easy and inexpensive way to do that. Several ways, in fact, and I’m happy to list some of them for you here.
You can, as I said, turn off that television and have family time. Or, if you need to watch the tube, choose something you all can watch together. Make a night of it with snacks, and beverages, and use the commercial time to talk about what you’re watching.
The other thing you can do that I absolutely guarantee will fill you with the holiday spirit is to give something to someone else.
Every community has toy drives and food drives at this time of year. Here in Canada, there in the United States, overseas—that is one thing that is common to all of our nations. So give.
You don’t have to give a lot. Here in North America, dollar stores abound. Some toys maybe are too poorly made for you to consider as good gifts, but every dollar store has coloring books and crayons, balls, card games, dolls, barrettes and bracelets and ear buds and calculators—all for a dollar or two. They have scarves and mittens and hats, too, if you’re in a chilly part of the country.
They also have cans of soup, 3 for $1. Or you can go to your local grocery store and buy a few tins of food. Tuna is good, as are vegetables, soups, and pasta. You could purchase jams, and honey and cheese spread. Peanut butter is a good bet as well, because it is high in protein. You can get jars of baby food, boxes of pabulum, or even boxes of regular cereal.
Maybe you can only spend $5. But that $5 can go a long way, especially if everyone you can think of gave $5. Can you imagine? I’ve said it before and I will say it now, and likely again at some point in the future. If everyone who shopped at your grocery store bought 1 thing for the food bank, your local food bank would overflow!
You don’t have any money? Then do a good turn for someone. Shovel a driveway, help carry a bag, hold a door open. Life is filled with opportunities great and small for you to do good. All you have to do is take your eyes off yourself and put them on someone else.
Take your eyes off of yourself, and put them on somebody else!
If you want the Christmas spirit, and it’s missing in your life, then create it by helping someone in need. It really doesn’t take a fortune, or a wealth of time.
It really only takes a determination to make a difference, and the decision to do so.