Most people in the USA think of a holiday as the likes of Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Christmas, or the fourth of July. In other countries it also means vacation time.
How is a holiday different to you? To me, I notice the world seems to slow down. Emails are few, if any. Phone calls, except for relatives, stop. There is a quiet and a space created. I realize I do have time and space, and I can slow down. It feels good. It’s relaxing as well as strange.
Then, the holiday heats up with people, relatives, meal preparation, and clean up. It’s an active time, sometimes even rushing around, while also enjoying the other people. Usually people are together and not rushing off. There are no sports to take the kids to. Everyone is enjoying, eating, and relaxing.
Years ago, people used to do a Sunday meal with the entire family. That is, for the most part, a thing of the past. It used to be a mini holiday, when people could slow down and enjoy one another.
Vacations are often extensions of the holiday feeling. For those who can, what is better than shutting off the email, the office calls, the customer, and the hectic pace of life? Changing our routine, leaving the phone off, going to the beach, or on a hike, or just reading, feels great. We wonder why we don’t unplug more often.
Be it a one day holiday or two weeks vacation, the world can go on without us. Things still work. When we return from holiday, sure, some things weren’t done the way we wanted; but it all works out. The world will go on without us, as will our jobs and family.
One day we’ll all go on permanent holiday. We’ll be missed. But, life will continue for the others. So, when you think you have to work, you have to do X, Y, and Z, remember, when you go on permanent holiday the others will find a way without you.
As we head into the holiday season, let’s appreciate them for what they are and focus on them. Take advantage of the holidays to stop the insanity of our actions, slow down, breathe, enjoy the moment and family. Shut the mind off. Be in the moment. Be with the others. Share. Participate. Be part of the fun. Be part of the excitement. If kids are with you, get on the floor and play dolls, cars, trains or whatever the kids want to play.
Reach out and be sure to include at your table those who do not have family close by to share with. Enjoy someone new. Make memories.
Slow down to speed up your enjoyment of life. Do one thing at a time. Focus fully on what you are doing right now. Let go of the stuff. Let go of the “I should be doing”, let go of it all. In the letting go is the finding of the enjoyment that is life itself.