Time is our most precious gift, to give and to receive. It’s perhaps one taken most for granted, because we’re spending it constantly. But time is one gift that is truly irreplaceable, valuable and magical. Time spent listening, comforting, loving, laughing, helping is never wasted. That time shapes our memories and our character, and those of the people around us. Time brings life alive. Time is a treasure we should share more often. We can never get it back, so we might as well spend it abundantly.
The holiday season can sometimes be stressful. We want to have a magical time with our loved ones, and that can put a lot of pressure on ourselves to make it happen for everyone. To make it a little less stressful, we sometimes have to alter our perspective. Our expectations won’t always match our reality, and that’s ok. Sometimes the most memorable times are the spontaneous ones. Sometimes the most memorable times are the quietest ones. But most of all, the most memorable times depend on who we’re with. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what we do, but who we share this time with. It’s the ones we’re with who will ultimately make it magical. Let’s not stress about the holiday time. Let it happen naturally.
Tis the season to be jolly. There’s something about the holiday time that changes our outlook on life. And that’s primarily because it’s a time for giving, for generosity and for kindness. We’re more forgiving and accepting of others’ flaws and mistakes. We’re more charitable and hospitable towards those less fortunate. We open ourselves up, letting love both infiltrate and radiate. Christmas time really goes to show how much giving can boost our happiness, our energy and our sense of worth. It’s a beautiful cycle that shouldn’t be underestimated or broken. It’s a spirit that we should hold onto all throughout the year.
There are times for standing up for ourselves and our beliefs, for walking away from people and situations, and for growing out of relationships and circumstances. There are also times for rekindling and rebuilding connections, for saying sorry or forgiving others, and for putting down our weapons. Sometimes it’s hard to know which path to tread. Deep down, we all know what is best, when it should be for us and when it should be for others. Follow your heart and follow your instincts. Spread peace whichever path you pursue, both inside and in the outer world.
(Queen’s 2014 Christmas Message)
“It is a fair, even-handed, noble adjustment of things, that while there is infection in disease and sorrow, there is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humour.”
“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!”
“He has the power to render us happy or unhappy; to make our service light or burdensome; a pleasure or a toil. Say that his power lies in words and looks; in things so slight and insignificant that it is impossible to add and count ’em up: what then? The happiness he gives, is quite as great as if it cost a fortune.”
From A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
A very merry Christmas to everyone!!
Whilst this time of year brings joy and love to families and friendships, I believe that Christmas should extend beyond this. We need to remember to show love to those who are easily forgotten or left behind, those we wish we could be with or those we have unintentionally lost touch with. These displays of affection are simple and effortless, but rewarding, powerful and memorable: ring a friend or family member who is currently living abroad and away for Christmas; pay a visit to a sick relative in hospital who isn’t surrounded by the homely atmosphere; send a card to somebody you haven’t spoken to for a long time; drop off a bunch of flowers to that neighbour who has always helped you out; light a candle at the grave of a lost one in loving memory; surprise someone who is living alone with some company; donate to a charity or a Christmas collection for those less fortunate. Envelop everybody in the spirit of love, because everybody deserves that special gesture, no matter how insignificant you believe it to be.
There is something so magical about Christmas time. It is so much more than a day for receiving gifts. It is the season for giving, sharing and loving. It is the time of miracles, believing and hope. It is the season for forgiveness, grand gestures and reconciliation. It is the time of generosity, charity and gratitude. Christmas is a celebration of all these things. There is an energy circling around the earth that spreads to all corners. Love and joy are everywhere. Whether we celebrate Christmas as a religious holiday or not, we need to keep this in our hearts, extending the magic to all aspects of our lives and to all year round. Christmas isn’t just a day; it is a frame of mind, a way of life, a powerful tool. Hold onto it and make the most of it.
This has been one of my favourite Christmas songs this year, that I think really captures this spirit. ‘December Prayer’ by Idina Menzel:
(Also on Spotify and iTunes)
“‘It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes or bags!’… Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! ‘Maybe Christmas,’ he thought, ‘doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas, … perhaps,… means a little bit more!'” – from How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr Seuss
Have a Merry Christmas with your loved ones!!