It’s easy to feel overwhelmed as Christmas approaches. Just when we need to rest, reflect, replenish and reset, it seems there is an endless list of things to be done. Sometimes we can lose sight of what really matters and get caught up in the fervour and frenzy, in what we think we should be doing.
A few weeks ago I heard an address at a school Christmas service, a school that has over 25 different faiths represented amongst staff and students.
The speaker, a warm, wise, humble and funny man, hit just the right note, and I was captivated by the clarity of his words. He asked the congregation to focus on three things during the holiday season. Here is the essence of what he said:
Firstly, find a way to be happy with who you are. 😀
Secondly, take the time to cherish and nourish your relationships with friends and family, with the people who really matter. 💞
And thirdly, whatever your beliefs, faith, religion, or lack thereof, try to find the space and time in your life for the sacred and the spiritual. 🙏🏼
I can think of no better advice. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas, the end of the year is the perfect time to reflect on what is important, to rest, replenish and reset for the year to come.
We need to remember to simply be as well as do. Less fervour and frenzy, more heart and soul. Fewer shopping malls, more fresh air. Less consumerism, more spirit. Less wanting, more wonder.
So, I’m keeping Christmas simple. I’m nourishing my spirit and feeding my soul. I’m reading, writing and doing the things that make my heart sing. I’m telling myself I’m enough, just as I am. I’m avoiding the fluff and nonsense, the weight of expectation, rampant spending and false jollity.
I’m celebrating love and life, cherishing friends and family, basking in the southern summer light, looking forward to more adventures in 2019 and feeling grateful for my many blessings. I will rest, reflect, replenish and reset.
This time of year can be particularly challenging for anyone struggling or carrying a burden. Six years I ago I was in a very dark place but I found my voice through writing and speaking and gradually made my way back to the light.
You can read the full story of my recovery from depression in Changing Lightbulbs, and you can email firstname.lastname@example.org to book me as a speaker for an event in 2019.
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