"Christmas is not a time nor season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and good will, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas."
- Calvin Coolidge
Heading home for the holidays always brings comforting feelings. Whether you’re on Christmas break from school, or you’re taking your vacation time off work, the holidays are times people look forward to. Everything around us screams Christmas; decorations, carols, cool weather, hot beverages and mounds of treats. Our pace of life prior to Christmas day seems to speed up while most people are trying to finish the last of their holiday errands. The malls are packed, traffic is at a seasonal high and the workload for 2013 is coming to an end.
With all that being said, people seem to have a positively different attitude during the holidays compared to the previous eleven months. It’s hard to trump Canadians’ politeness but it seems Canadians outdo themselves at this time of year. People are holding doors extra long, letting people merge more frequently, and unwarranted “sorrys” come in abundance this time of year. Finally the ultimate day comes, Christmas morning is upon us and life hasn’t quite slowed down yet. But it’s fast where it’s supposed to be, in our homes. Kids wake up uncharacteristically early to fiercely rip open gifts from their loved ones and Santa. Everyone, including parents and grandparents stay in their pajamas past brunch while nursing hot chocolate and nibbling on festive crepes. The best part about Christmas is having everyone come together for good food and even better company.
Most of us are guilty of letting the craziness of life fill up our schedules. It’s hard to find time to spend with all of our loved ones throughout the year, but having everyone together for the holidays is one of Christmas’ true gifts. Walking outside in your neighbourhood on Christmas day and seeing other families doing the same is quite refreshing. Everyone you pass by sends their holiday greetings with smiles and waves as it seems this time of year is saturated with positive vibes and happy people. These are the same feelings we strive to have every day of the year. We are capable of living like this more often; being polite, caring, giving, an ambassador of your community, morally aware and most importantly humane. This time of year may be full with consumerism and materialistic appetites but these aren’t the reason why we feel as good as we do. We naturally want to be happy with others and it’s important to strive to be this way consistently. Now that we’re in the midst of the holiday season lets be aware of what’s important. Make time for those you cherish in life, whether it be a card, phone call or actually spending time. Be charitable and humane to your neighbours and fellow countryman. Slow down and live in the moment and embrace what’s around you.
Most importantly, remember how you feel during this time of year and try to reproduce it as much as possible in 2014. Be an ambassador of your community and encourage others to do the same.