As the week of Christmas officially begins, many of us will find ourselves caught up in a whirlwind of preparation and shopping.
Almost all of us desire our upcoming week to be a time of connection, relationship, memories, celebrations, and time shared in joy with one another.
And apparently, a large percentage of us think buying more stuff is going to help those things be accomplished. Don’t believe me?
Did you know that three of the four busiest shopping days of the year will occur this week?
But what if the most effective way to elevate your Christmas season isn’t found hustling and bustling about to different stores and websites?
What if, instead of filling our homes with more stuff this week, we chose to fill them with more life?
More stuff and more life are not the same thing. In fact, often times, it’s the pursuit and accumulation of stuff that distracts us from real life.
Christmas isn’t about filling our homes with more items. It’s about creating spaces for life and laughter, for connection and memory-making. Our relatives and friends don’t travel long-distances to our homes for the decorations and presents. They come for the joy and the warmth and the connection of being together.
Think back to your most cherished Christmas memories. Rarely are they about the gifts you received. Maybe you remember one or two, but that’s about it.
More often, your most cherished Christmas memories include being with friends and family, the warmth of laughter, and the feeling of belonging. These moments of connection are the most life-giving parts of Christmas.
Too often, we place pressure on ourselves during these final days. We dash to the stores for ‘just one more gift’ or rush about seeking the ideal ingredients for the festive feast. One more idea of something we could get pops up in our head and we rush out to get it.
But in this frantic pace, we risk missing the life happening right in front of us.
So this holiday week, let’s shift our focus from the external trappings of the season to what truly matters. Let’s remember that being present, both physically and emotionally, is more valuable than any present we can buy.
Even for the little ones, the real holiday magic isn’t opening boxes and boxes full of toys on Christmas morning, it’s in the time spent with family simply being together. Part of me thinks, deep-down, kids only want more toys on Christmas morning because it’s just one more opportunity for you to sit down and play something with them.
This Christmas week, let’s make a conscious choice to bring life, not more stuff, into our homes.
Let’s resist the constant urge for ‘just one more thing’ and instead, cherish the blessings already around us. Let’s slow down, breathe in the moment, and be fully present with our loved ones.
Christmas is a time of giving, of course.
But the greatest gifts we can offer are our time, our love, and our presence. These are the gifts that fill our homes with life.
So rather than more shopping, let’s consciously choose to slow down. Let’s savor the moments of togetherness and create an environment that prioritizes people over things.
Let’s fill our homes with laughter, stories, and the warmth of togetherness. After all, the true magic of Christmas is defined not by the stuff we accumulate but by the life and joy we share.
Have a great one everybody!