Christmas is coming… Can you feel it?
The stress of November is ripe to give way to the magic of the Holiday season. Bright reds and greens dot the (hopefully snow white) landscape, and the sounds of caroling fill the air. Not to mention the smells of family cooked food… YUM!
But there’s a catch! (There’s always a catch!)
Someone is on a mission to kill the vibe. A Grinch is among us! It could be anyone, but most of us know at least one veritable Scrooge! It’s someone who only sees the bad side of the Holidays; the excessive consumption and the greed-fest of opening gifts. Everyone’s cheer seems to bother them. They even hate the music! (Gasp!)
The thing about Grinches is that their attitude can be contagious. If given enough of a podium, they’ll start to infect others, one by one, until you have a family dinner full of humbugs!
Before I continue, allow me to confess… I’m a bit of a Grinch myself; I’m not fond of most Christmas music, and it always feels awkward to exchange gifts with my family. With so much going wrong in the world, do we really need to spend more on each other? I’m certainly no Scrooge, but a bit of a Grinch? Sure, I’ll admit to that!
But like most Grinches and Scrooges, deep down in my heart, I do love the Holidays!
So here are three things I think you should be doing with YOUR family Grinch to cheer them up this Holiday season. I call it the “Three Ghosts” of modern Christmas:
Don’t Engage your Grinch
Grinches feed on feedback! That’s how they “infect” others with negativity. Avoid confronting your Grinch, and telling them how wrong you think they are to be such a humbug! That’s exactly what they want, and it only reinforces their notion of the Holidays being a lame or phony event.
If left to their own devices, Grinches usually end up coming out of their grumpy little shells (their hearts inevitably grow three sizes, so it gets a little cramped in there).
If your Grinch is anything like me, they probably feel a bit awkward around Christmas. The good feeling of receiving love, warmth and gifts conflicts with the guilt of knowing there are so many others out there not as fortunate as us.
Lucky for Grinches (and for those around them), there is a super easy solution to this! All you need to do is give back. And in December, that’s easier than easy. There are dozens of organizations where you can volunteer, and hundreds of workplaces that offer programs to help the poor (does your workplace have one?). Even within your community, there’s sure to be a way to contribute to the greater good. Just ask a neighbour or go to your local community centre.
Especially with younger Grinches, grumpy and negative attitude is often not a result of actual Grinchiness, but rather a symptom of mental fatigue. Our kids work really hard at school, and it’s important to let them make the most of the valuable rest the Holiday season offers. If your kids are being grumpy or giving you attitude, make sure their Holiday schedule isn’t jam-packed with stuff to do! Give them a balance between activity and rest. They need it!
Of course, there are many other ways to cheer up a Grinch! How did you give YOUR Scrooge a change of heart? We’d love to hear your stories of Christmas transformations. Head back over to the comments section on Facebook to tell us about your Grinch!