When I was a child I used to think that the warm and happy feelings I felt on Christmas Day just “happened.” But, now I know that all that magic and festive mood happen since someone is working hard 24/7, and that someone is ME.
Three days ago, I stumbled across my friend’s Christmas to-do list and the list almost gave me an anxiety attack. Of course, I’ve seen many such lists before, and some of the things that were included in the list have been on my own mental list many times too. And I also know that there are many people who enjoy getting their homes ready for the holidays. But, I definitely don’t fit into this category of people.
My friend’s Christmas to-do list caused me to think about what truly matters to me and what doesn’t.
I am a sentimental person. I love to see my nephew’s and niece’s eyes light up when they get Christmas presents and when they see the decorated Christmas tree. I enjoy buying gifts for my parents and partner and I think that I’m more thrilled than them when it comes time to open them.
I love making, decorating, and eating Christmas cookies.
I enjoy watching Christmas movies alone or with my friends.
Christmases were always beautiful and festive growing up and I don’t want that magic to disappear. But, I don’t want to work my a** off in order for my loved ones to have a perfect holiday.
Instead, I want to be present there. I want to truly enjoy it. I want to feel relaxed and I want to laugh since I am not stressed about getting the living room cleaned and the Christmas cookies baked before all the guests arrive.
The gift that I truly want to give myself and my loved ones this year is the gift of saying “no.”
Because on Christmas Day, I want to be present instead of anxious and stressed out. I want to feel comfortable and relaxed.
We get to choose what we will and what we won’t put on our to-do lists.
We don’t have to attend every party.
We don’t have to buy gifts for every person that we hold dear. I enjoy giving gifts, but this can become a mental and financial strain. (And I know how this feels).
We don’t have to decorate every room in our house.
We don’t have to make every Christmas cookie that there’s a recipe for on the internet.
We don’t have to make every Christmas season perfect.
I don’t plan to ruin Christmas magic since it requires too much work. However, I do plan to allow myself to say “no” to the things which don’t bring me and my loved ones a sense of fulfillment and joy.
Christmas magic is all about celebrating the holiday with those you love. It’s about being together. It’s about the festive morning filled with thoughtfulness, joy, and laughter.
And perhaps it’s about buying and wrapping gifts or about lying on your couch and drinking hot chocolate as long as possible.
So, if you want to attend every Christmas party, do that. If you want to buy expensive gifts for every person you hold dear, do that. But remember – the magic is what we get to choose.