The best present at Christmas is to be there for each other
The biggest gift we can give to one another is being there and being fully present to one another through the season and beyond. It is no accident the word 'present' meaning 'gift' and 'present' meaning 'to be there' look the same.
To be there with people and to be there for people is the ultimate in gifts. Being fully present means being there in mind, body and spirit. It means being alive to the situation, emotionally available, connecting with people and allowing them in and allowing your beautiful personality out.
Part of being present is really seeing people for who they are in this moment.
If there are people in your life you have always seen in a certain way, be open to them being different. See them as they are now and not as they were last year or last month or when you were in primary school together. Christmas is a time we meet and connect with so many old friends, neighbours, colleagues and family members from many different chapters of our life. They may be similar but they may be different in a number of ways. Allow that.
One quote I love by George Bernard Shaw: 'The only man I know who behaves sensibly is my tailor; he takes my measurements anew each time he sees me. The rest go on with their old measurements and expect me to fit them.'
Our mind often likes to make assumptions and presumes past understandings in present situations. When we do this, we miss out. It is important to never assume and to allow people to be who they are now, to allow them to change, grow, be different, better, kinder, and happier. The same applies to situations.
And… speaking of the past assumptions and perceptions…If you are holding pain, baggage or grudges with people or about people or even about yourself, things that are not adding in any beneficial way to your life today, ask yourself if you are ready to let them go? We often carry old hurts that serve to keep old wounds open and hold us in the past and prevent us from enjoying the gift of the present and the magic of current moments.
Letting go of old things will make space for good things now and even better things in your future.
Some of us are working through Christmas. Some have a lot of time off. Some work intensely before and some of us work more intensely after. For many, there are lots of parties, fun, laughter and time together. Some of us spend a lot of TV time and some of us have a lot of alone time. All of us will have reflection time. In this we will look at what is working well and what is working less well for us. But don't let this take from them moment. Productive reflection will always help us enjoy and appreciate the magic of what we have now more and better.
There will be delicious rich food, sharing with family and friends for most of us. Most important thing is to enjoy everything you do, person you meet and mouthful you eat. All guilt-free.
Christmas is many things to many people. But ultimately, this year it will be what you make of it for you and for those around you.
Make it a good one. May it happy. And make if fun for yourself and everyone else. If there are shadows of old lesser memories, make new ones and make them great. This applies to Christmas day and to everyday! Enjoy.