By Guest Contributor Diane Wise
While this holiday season may not resemble our past festivities, there is some good news. Here are some of my thoughts about making the best of this month.
1. It’s OK to do things differently. Many of us go all out with decorations knowing we will have family and friends here to enjoy them. If that’s not the case, it’s fine if you simplify and do something different. Even though I enjoy decorating, neither of my children will be home for Christmas, and my mother is in assisted living, so I’ve allowed myself to only pull out the things that I love and bring me joy. It still feels festive but keeping it simpler has given me time to do other things.
2. It’s OK to decorate earlier than usual. Maybe people were just ready to feel the holiday spirit, but according to the American Christmas Tree Association, decorating for the holidays earlier can have positive mental health benefits. It can actually improve our mood for several reasons. First, it invokes good memories and feelings from the past. Second, thinking about others can help lighten depression. Instead of being inwardly focused, we can focus on giving and doing for others, and that can help us be happier.
3. It’s OK to lower your expectations of others. As individuals, each of us are dealing with the effect the past seven months have had on us. Many of us have fallen ill, or lost loved ones, and this may not be a season of joy for everyone. Let’s give each other grace and whenever possible, do something to lighten the load someone may be carrying. More than physical gifts, I think people want to know that others care, through their actions.
4. It’s OK to shop differently. Did you know that Amazon has had to hire 175,000 new workers to help handle the demand? Instead of rushing to the big retail stores or online retailers, make a decision to support the smaller businesses in your community. If you don’t want to get out and shop, consider giving gift cards from some of your favorite shops that have been struggling to make it.
Let’s finish out 2020 knowing we have made a difference by being gentle with ourselves and showing compassion and care to others. That’s how we can make the best of the true spirit of this season.
About the Author, Diane Wise:
Diane and Jenn are first cousins; her mom and Jenn’s dad are brother and sister. Diane is a wildly talented and creative artist, crafter and maker. These two cousins combine their talent to create Fiber Fusion. To see some of her latest designs, visit her site at https://www.getwisedesign.com/shop