Give Connections this Christmas by Lura Hobbs
I love the holiday season, don’t you? The sights of Christmas lights, grand Christmas trees in parks and at malls and festive wreaths on doors everywhere. The smells of fresh Christmas – trees, apple cider, egg nog and sweet potato pie – warm me despite whatever the weather may be. The sounds… I love the Christmas carols, old and new. There’s no other time of year quite like Christmas.
But let’s face it, the holidays can also be stressful. From cooking, shopping, traveling, to preparing for family or guests coming to stay at your house, there’s an endless list of things to do in our quest for a memorable Christmas. We chase the “ideal” Christmas that’s filled with “stuff” and somehow in all that rushing, the warmth and peace of the season eludes us. How did this season of joy turn into stress and strain?!
So, let’s declare that Christmas 2017 will be different and the beginning of new traditions. We need to focus on the real meaning of the season – loving and giving. Take that Christmas shopping list and tear it up. I dare you to limit your shopping and quest for gifts that require wrapping. What if we replaced all the shopping with connecting? Here are some practical ways we can reclaim our Christmas joy:
- Reconnect with an old friend that doesn’t live close by anymore. Write an old fashioned letter or make a phone call (not a text) and take the time to truly catch up. The holidays can be a tough time for some. Your card, letter or call could be the most treasured gift for someone during this time.
Connect in person with a close friend that you don’t see often enough. Schedule breakfast, lunch or dinner and linger without a timetable to enjoy food and fellowship that will fill both of your souls.
- Connect with your spouse over a special date night to his favorite restaurant or take him to see his favorite sports team even if you’re not as much of a fan as he is. He will appreciate your time, thoughtfulness and effort.
- Connect with your kids with one-on-one time. Let them choose the activity and just dive in. They may want to go to the movies, bake some cookies or just play a video game with you. Having your undivided, untethered (put your phone and laptop away) attention is a huge gift that they will enjoy and remember.
- Connect with someone in need by donating to Angel Tree by Salvation Army or donate your time to a community event where you can serve those less fortunate.
Now that you’ve planned to connect/reconnect with the special people in your life instead of shopping to purchase gifts for them, you should also take time to reconnect with yourself. After a year of working hard, striving towards your goals and running at 100 miles per hour, take time to connect with you. How are you, really? Are you tired and need a break? Take a mental health day and just rest. If you have the funds, take yourself on a spa day. Spend some time journaling and making a list of what you’re grateful for this year. Make a list of what you’ve accomplished and celebrate your progress. Indulge in reading a book that you’ve been wanting to read but haven’t found time. Do something for you this Christmas that feeds your soul and empowers you to get ready for positive and fruitful 2018.
Remove the stress of finding the perfect gift for everyone on your list and choose connections with them instead. After all, Jesus is the reason for the season and his #1 ask of us is to Love Him and Love each other. There’s no greater or better connection than that.
Lura is an author and speaker with a passion for helping women reach their full potential while balancing life and work. When asked to summarize her philosophy in six words, it’s “Life is about choices, choose wisely.”
In her career, Lura represents the next generation of branding and marketing thought leaders. Lura is an accomplished national presenter and panelist, adept at targeting messages to C-level executives and broad-based marketing teams. Outside of work, Lura is a dedicated wife and mom to two daughters.
She earned a Bachelor of Science in management from Purdue University and MBA from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. She is formerly President of an integrated marketing communications agency based in Dallas, TX and now on her own quest with her consulting firm, Solstice Strategies.
Connect with me on Facebook in our group: Bravas – Leading Ladies Unmasked
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