..or so they say. But you know what? Life can be wonderful, without it having to be a specific month on the calendar. While there aren’t always jingle jangles blasting in the streets or bright colored lights sparkling on porches, [there are small things to appreciate during the “ordinary” time of the year].
People get all in “jolly good spirits” for a few short weeks out of the year then it’s right back to being a miserable fuck, who complains about anything and everything.
I mean ya hate to see it. It’s like we all kind of roleplay this fantasy world, where everything is “Joy to the world” for a little while and we put aside all the pain and misery that otherwise exists in reality. Then right as soon “play time” is over, we snap back into the shitty world we actually live in….or at least we *believe* it’s shitty.
We all play “pretend”, imagining there’s world peace and harmony for a little while, then put our imagination to the side after all’s said and done and go right back to finding a reason to be unhappy.
Heck, even during wars, they’d stop shooting each other's limbs off for a bit in order to celebrate some holiday good cheer with cake and everything. Then of course after the day was over, it’s right back to putting a bullet between your enemy’s skull. Kind of fucked up.
Christmas is like a drug society uses to get high, feel good, and forget about problems for a while. Then as soon as that “high” wears off, it’s back to living a sort of miserable existence.
Now I don’t say that to sound vain. I don’t say that to sound pessimistic. I’m just pointing out the fact of how quickly people transform from “HO HO HO”-ing to “NO NO NO”-ing. It’s like we only maintain cool positive vibes for a little while.
The song “Frosty the Snowman” I’d argue is a perfect metaphor for society during the Christmas season. We begin to “dance around” in jolly good spirits then melt away all those good feelings as quickly as they came. It’s sort of “magical”.
Of course, on the flip side, you have people that say things like “spread the Christmas joy all-year round”. But that’s just not feasible. Realistically, unfeasible.
The only man who is jolly all year round is a mythical creature.
(Of course, to be fair, the man only works one day a year. Mythical or not, I think anyone that gets to be lazy for 99% of the year has every right to be jolly all the time... but I digress.)
A real human being goes through a range of emotions year-round. There are laughs and cries. Good times and bad times. Jollyness and...terribleness.
To insinuate that one must merrily sing even in times of strife is ridiculous.
Oh your aunt just died? “Ho! Ho! Ho! What a merry little thing to happen to her.”
Car just broke down? “Ho! Ho! Ho! A sleigh ride tonight!”
Gone broke? “Ho! Ho! Ho! There will be gifts under the tree.”
Like c’mon! That’s just highly illogical. The reality is, life can suck sometimes, damnit! Life is not a Winter Wonderland all the time. Sometimes Grandma gets hit by a Reindeer, ya know?
With that said though, there’s no reason to be a complete Grinch year-round either. Things may suck when it “‘tisn’t” the season, but that doesn’t mean you should go around acting nasty just because you *feel* nasty.
Like the holiday season itself, feelings are temporary. And while you can’t necessarily change what happens to you or even how you feel about it, you can change how you *react* to it. You must accept what happens and your feelings while they are present, even if you don’t like them.
The goal is not so much to aim to feel Joy all the time but to aim for...satisfaction.
Satisfaction is acceptance of the way things are. It’s accepting that your sweater is ugly and still wearing it with pride. It’s accepting that the star atop the tree is a little crooked. It’s accepting that maybe you got coal wrapped in a box.
See, you don’t have to be jolly holly about your life, nor should you be a complete Scrooge either, you just have to be relaxed about it, lazy about it -- not trying to feel a certain way about it, but allowing yourself to feel the way you do and being absolutely completely okay with it.
You just have to relax, whether you’re in your xmas pajamas or a three piece suit. Be comfortable no matter the circumstances.
It’s all about [going with the flow], or sleighing down the hill, for that matter, and enjoying the ride, despite whatever sort of icy winds or snowpiles you come across. That is to say, no matter what troubles or burden you face during your ride in life, just sit on back and enjoy it anyway.
As you lay back in your lazy, you know what? You’ll find it all to be quite “wonderful”. Not in the sense that it’s an overwhelmingly positive thing to experience ( I mean it could be but it could also equally not be as well), but that it is, in fact, full of wonder.
There’s always a sense of uncertainty, wonder, in life and uncertainty is the spark of curiosity. Curiosity is of course the laid back attitude of “Let’s see where this goes”. It’s enjoying “dashing through the snow” whether it’s too cold and snowy...or maybe even warm enough under the blanket with hot cocoa. It’s having fun in “all the fields we go”, no matter how good or bad the one horse open sleigh actually is. It’s being curious about what you’ll pass by next and making spirits bright, no matter what it is.
It’s being open to possibility, living in the moment. It’ seeing how “lovely are the branches” no matter how beautiful or ugly the decorations on the tree are. It’s enjoying life for the sake of living it and not only enjoying it while you’re feeling a certain way (like you do during the holiday season). It’s not about being joyful; it’s about enjoying what you have. In. The. Moment.
See, like a tree, our life is full of these decorations -- the people, things, and events we come across -- but at the core, no matter what these decorations are, the good, the bad, and the ugly the tree, life itself is full of growth and loveliness.
When you see that, when you see the beauty in between the decor, you don’t have to wait for a very specific time of year to “hark the harold”, you can just appreciate it, always.
Lean back on your cozy chair and watch the chestnuts roast on an open fire. That is to say, look at the little otherwise ordinary things in life and see how much they are spectacular.
The holiday season is only special because we make it special.
Drinking eggnog, for example, is really a pretty ordinary thing if you think about it. It’s just a beverage, no more special than a glass of water to be honest.
But what makes it such an amazing moment to sip eggnog from your fancy little light up snowman mug?
Well, you decided it’s special. You’ve told yourself “This is a special moment”. I mean hey it’s the holiday, after al, right?
It’s not every day you’re sitting curled up in your gingerbread onesie with that light up mug, listening to carols and watching the claymation classic Christmas movies.
But really, if you did that sort of thing every day, you might go ahead and start to take it for granted. You might start to complain about it. You might get annoyed by the jingle jangles. You might even get sick of the flavor of eggnog. You might begin to feel slightly uncomfortable in your onesie and prefer a pair of jeans instead.
The mere fact that it’s not something you do every day makes it special, makes it enjoyable.
In the moment, you’re satisfied only because you made it out to be a special moment. You put aside time to do something “out of the ordinary” in order to bring a little Christmas cheer.
You’ve put yourself in the mental frame that that specific moment is a “special occasion.”
But what if we do that more often?
What if we think to ourselves “this moment, right here, is special” on a consistent basis and not just it late December?
See, “Christmas Cheer’ is only a feeling, a feeling we get when we decide that what we’re doing in the current moment is in fact a special moment. Christmas Cheer is satisfaction. It’s appreciating and enjoying the moment, despite how mundane it may actually be.
Cause let’s face it, anything you do during the holiday *would be* mundane if it weren’t for the fact that you only do it *during* the holiday. Again, drinking eggnog. Like, not a big deal. Totally uneventful.. You only *make it* eventful because you decide to make it so.
I mean heck, it could be "white" for the next three months. Baby, it's cold outside 'til March.
What I’m getting at here is that if you want to “keep the Christmas spirit alive” year-round, you must make your life eventful in the otherwise boring, mundane, or even miserable times of year. You have to see the “good tidings” at every moment. Be in the moment.
Say to yourself “Oh what fun it is to ride” to whatever life throws at you. Lean back and appreciate it for what it is.
You may not get what you want on your Christmas list, but that doesn’t mean you pout about it. You just have a good time anyway. Likewise, you may not get what you want on your life list, but there’s no reason to complain about it and make it worse. Just enjoy what you do get. Either way, it’s a gift.
Embrace your laziness and make life a permanent holiday where every single moment, in the present, is "the most wonderful time."
Take it easy,