How To Have The Best Christmas Ever

I love Christmas: any excuse for a get together; not to mention that I’m seriously into the concept of peace on earth and goodwill to all mankind, but we have to face the fact for some it’s a sad lonely time with painful memories. So, first thing to do is find ways of laying the ghosts of Christmas past to rest if we have them. Our past doesn’t determine our future unless we let it. For a meaningful advent help others; instead of buying expensive presents and barraging the digestive system volunteer, perhaps give to a worthy cause.

For many it’s a frantic rush to finish work and do everything that needs doing. Plan ahead to manage the pressure because when it’s off many get colds, flu and bugs. Everything’s more enjoyable when we’re healthy so make time to be mentally and physically as healthy as we can.

Don’t overspend- keep it real. There’s huge hype around Christmas whipped up by the brilliant brains of advertising. Avoid roller coaster spending. Plan to avoid the after- Christmas blues by having things to do and some cash left over for January and February.

Be thankful for the many people who work at Christmas. A friend in emergency services told me in the last eight years they’ve only spent one Christmas at home with their partner. I looked shocked, but they said ‘Never mind it went quite quickly’.

Find, reinforce and share the treasured and helpful rituals, ditch the unhelpful ones and be flexible. Recently spoke to a lady whose daughters in their 20’s come home for Christmas and they love waking up on Christmas morning listening to Pinky and Perky music because it has so many treasured memories (well it takes all sorts). Rituals might not be the same for everyone, an element of consensus and compromise may be required.

Respect other people’s space. New families may feel the need to break with tradition and be at home. For many of us there’ll be a family house cramming competition, which can be difficult for adolescents sleeping in an unusual place. So it might be an idea to create a chill zone or safe haven eg.  sitting on the stairs or a corner where people can go for a bit of quiet time. Celebrate and tolerate differences. For many Christmas is a religious festival of great significance, for many it’s not. I have Muslim, Buddhist and Sikh friends who like Christmas and demonstrate a true generosity of spirit.

If there’s a bit of family tension and someone’s getting up your nose don’t rise, especially after Christmas beverages which may make us think we’re cleverer and more right than usual. ‘Perhaps say to ourselves ‘I wish I didn’t mind and I won’t let it get to me’. Rather than ‘Yer talking shite and I’m gonna to put you right.’

If someone’s being abusive, avoid becoming a victim. Seek help – it’s a sign of strength not weakness.

Plan to do fun things, walk, bike ride, play cards, board games, do stuff and accept it’s different these days as most teenagers will probably be happiest playing with their most recent video game or on their phone. It’s a fine balance.

Everyone should help out with the cooking and chores, unless of course there’s someone who really loves cooking. Don’t feel compelled to do turkey and all the trimmings, there are some great alternatives and I’m actually really surprised how many people I know who are getting fast food delivered!

Make time to connect with people, speak with family and friends – share the love

How do we solve our problems in life? It’s through asking constructive questions; which could be ‘What can I do to make it the best Christmas ever without overspending?’ ‘What can I do to help my family and friends have the best Christmas ever?’ We get back what we give out, it’s important to spread sunshine and kindness and of course to smile (but not in a creepy way) so all that remains is for me to thank you for reading my blog and I wish you a happy, healthy and wonderful Christmas and of course peace on earth and goodwill towards all mankind.