BESIDES the commercialisation of the Christmas season, I have found it to be a bizarrely stressful season for so many.
Certainly, the pressure on people to buy unusually special gifts for their friends and loved ones can be enormous. But there is also a great deal of stress on relationships, notwithstanding the stress that comes with the consumption of food and drink that comes with the season.
Just today I was going through a roundabout and was almost hit by someone insisting they betray my right of way. Didn’t even seem to look. But it’s indicative of the hurry and folly of the season.
There is, however, a danger in anticipating such a season as more problematic socially than other months of the year. We begin to see only the bad. But it can also be an advantage if we’re motivated to help people who seem to be stressed more than usual.
What can we do? For ourselves… for others…
Reminding ourselves that we have a choice at any given moment to embrace the moment’s rest, even when we’re working hard, is the recognition of a transformative mindset. For others it’s a case of simply understanding into the stresses they might be facing and enduring.
Tapping into the conversation going on in our minds is useful. The banter we have with ourselves can either increase the stress or decrease it. It can expand our joy or shrink it. Isn’t it ironic that the Christmas season is sold as the time we reflect on what we’re grateful for, yet, being a season that truncates time within the enormity of a plethora of tasks to do, we can quickly end up jaded.
Between consumerism and consumption, and the contraction of time within the complexity of many tasks to do, Christmas in the modern-day breeds dis-ease in anyone seeking peace. It’s important to get back to Christmas’ core message. A baby was born to become a man, to endow the world with God’s salvation plan.