How to Get into the Festive Spirit!

Okay, we’re a week away from Christmas, and not everyone is basking in seasonal bliss just yet.

This year, I’m all over it The chips have fallen thus that I’ve been able to prepare and allow for cool, Christmassy activities . . . but that’s not always the case. I’ve had an ex-boyfriend completely ghost me the week before Christmas, with no explanation, which led to a series of panic attacks (and several months of unimaginable pain) that made Christmas 2014 total hell.

Christmas, good or bad, is intense. It requires a lot of energy to be consistently enthusiastic about baubles and gift tags for the better part of the month, and for some people, Christmas highlights not what they have, but perhaps what they’ve lost.

It’s totally okay to not be ramming a Christmas tree up your arse to be a paragon of yuletide cheer, and don’t let anyone guilt trip you if you feel a bit ‘meh’ about it all.

That said, there have been a few things in the past that have helped me bring a sense of anticipation to the proceedings, and they may help you!

  • Do something nice for someone else.

This is my first suggestion, because it’s by far the most important. If you do something to bring a little Christmas cheer to another person, it’ll make you happy to think of them enjoying themselves and contribute to their excitement. A little of that has to rub off.

You can donate festive food to a foodbank, go and sing a few songs to old folks in a home, pop in and see someone who doesn’t have a lot of company, or take in some extra goodies from a baking session to staff in local shops or neighbours,

Okay, some of that takes some time. If part of the reason that you’re not excited is because you’re too busy, an e-mail to a friend you’ve not seen in a while or some time spent supporting Blogmas posts can go a long way.

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  • Ask for help.

Are you the main organiser in your home/group of mates? That’s great, but there is absolutely no reason why you should be doing all of the work. For God’s sake, delegate. If you’re normally a gift wrap extraordinaire, your partner may think that you want to do all of it by yourself like you normally do.

If the thought of it is making you stress out over finding the time, ask someone else to do it, or to do the food shop, or write the Christmas cards. Better still, do it together! Crack open a bottle of Bailey’s or heat some mulled wine and divide and conquer.

  • Don’t feel obliged to do EVERYTHING FESTIVE, ALL OF THE TIME.

It’s almost like we forget that life actually continues during December, that we have to work, wash our undies and pay our council tax bills. It’d be great if we all had a month off to swirl around like ice princesses on skating rinks and go carol singing door-to-door every night, but that isn’t the case.

Write a list of the things you’d ideally like to do between now and New Year’s Day – baking cookies, meeting up with friends for a hot cider, having a Home Alone movie marathon, finding a snowy mountain to scale . . . whatever. Right, now circle the three most important and concentrate on making plans to do those things. Consider everything else a bonus. Christmas is about making the most of the time off with family, not showcasing the perfect ten days off on Instagram.

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  • Go to a Christmas market . . . but NOT on a weekend.

I appreciate that this isn’t possible for everyone (myself included), but if you live near a Christmas market, go an soak up the atmosphere on a quieter evening. You don’t have to have loads of money; take enough to go and get yourself a warm drink. Seeing people enjoying themselves will remind you what it’s all about, and you may forget about other things that are weighing on your mind.

 

  • Drive around town to look at extravagant light displays.

Oh, how whimsical! A walk on a dry evening is always a good idea anyway if you’re feeling overwhelmed. Put in your earphones and listen to some festive music. By this, I don’t mean Slade and Wizzard . . . if you’re not feeling Christmassy, they’ll only serve to piss you off. I like listening to Celtic, wintry folk albums, or ambient black metal. If you drive, go for a spin and stop somewhere for a hot chocolate. Again, seeing other people brightening up their home is an instant feel-good.

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  • Create your own tradition.

Some people feel divorced from Christmas because they feel that they either have to cleave to old traditions that they no longer have any interest in (i.e Midnight Mass for people who no longer have faith) or that they’ve never done the things that other people consider sacred.

 

Never do anything for the sake of it. Christmas pyjamas seem to be a thing for everyone (not in our house, and I’ve had my Grinch ones for three years). If you sleep in the nip, why would you subject yourself to a night of sweating your tits off just for a few good photos? Save the money and buy a bottle of vodka instead . . . and get absolutely smashed!

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All the best in finding your Christmas spirit. If you don’t, don’t worry, you can still have a wonderful Christmas without being mega pumped for it beforehand.

Love and strength,

Steph
xo

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