Are you looking forward to Christmas this year? It seems that for many of us the idea of something bright and festive to look forward to offers a ray of hope and optimism.
No one has been affected by the global pandemic and many have been affected by serious health, loss or economic considerations. Therefore, the idea of comfortable family keys and a bright, holiday home provides a definite feel-good factor.
Yes, there are people who have prospered, even seen their businesses grow, but the pessimistic mood around the world has cast great shadows. We have had time to reflect on what is really important in our lives and, for many, we have realized that relationships with the people closest to us are the most important thing in their lives.
Nine out of ten people who have worked from home have said they want to keep doing it. Putting less emphasis on powerful clothing, status, and impressive spending, and instead being home, dressing more casually, and primarily working your own hours to fit in has become more important to many.
After so long locked up, constricted and restricted for much of the year, the idea of celebrating true family values at Christmas offers something to look forward to, a time to spend with loved ones, to appreciate our home, our family. and friends, even if it is through online communication.
These months of lockdown have proven that money and expensive gifts are not love, even though it felt that way in previous years when there was a spending frenzy to buy the latest toys, gadgets, and all the items kids said they wanted. . In those times when we spend money, we couldn’t afford to make up for long work, being a single parent, or trying to invest everything to make that special time. Some families got so in debt that it took up to three years to pay it back.
Lockdown has reinforced many family ties and values, showing us that home, relationships and time in nature are what really matter. So this Christmas, even if we’re ‘just’ exchanging homemade cards and inexpensive gifts, or maybe because of that, the true spirit of Christmas will be especially evident. And what is more beautiful than receiving a card that was made with you in mind? Or a canning jar, a homemade cake, a knitted handkerchief. All these things that have been done, given and received with self-denial and love.
Thoughtful gestures also make a difference. When someone gives you a Christmas present that will really benefit you, maybe a babysitting voucher, an offer to cook dinner, to help in the garden or with decorating, classes in a foreign language or to play the guitar, you know. that has been given to you. with a little thought. Much more relevant to you than an expensive fragrance bought from a department store.
Gifts for our partner can also be more thoughtful this year. When a loved one gives us a compilation of ‘our’ special music, a scrapbook of our time together told through tickets, keepsakes and memories, or a special photo gallery, then we can feel especially loved and cared for.
After the year that we have had, many of us have realized what is really important. We have recognized how much of what we had previously strived for is no longer as important to us as it once was. We don’t need all the trimmings and we may not mind spending money on things that are now considered wasteful or require overspending. Especially when the previous Christmases have seen many families spend so much that it has caused them a lot of anxiety and difficulties.
Therefore, Christmas this year can be a time to celebrate our homes, families and friends and make the holidays festive, comfortable and cozy. We can take some inspiration from Thanksgiving in the USA, a time when more families travel home to celebrate together over a family meal and yet no gifts are exchanged.
I may be wrong, but this year I suppose many of us will be looking forward to displaying our Christmas trees and decorations with enthusiasm. Let’s celebrate the true meaning of Christmas!