EDITORIAL: Holidays good for positivity

Sharing smiles and good feelings the best gift at Christmas.

Santa’s got the right idea.

Be nice and get presents. Be naughty and get nothing. If only his clear-cut distinction could extend to adults.

At some point, the promise of a gift is not enough of a deterrent to keep people from losing their tempers – no more so than at Christmas, when ‘excess’ is the word of the day.

Pop singers warbling Christmas carols on an endless loop; overheated stores that leave shoppers juggling their puffy winter coats with purses and prior purchases; lineups at the food court, the bathroom and the parking lot; tiny, bright lights twinkling on and off with no regard for synchronization with each other or the beat of the aforementioned Christmas songs would drive anyone batty.

Add in the high-sugar, high-fat diet, alcohol – and the ensuing hangover – and the chance of crankiness is more predictable this time of year than a white Christmas. And sadly, the holiday season becomes something ‘to get through’ rather than celebrate or cherish.

The solution? Maybe we take some inspiration from the children and give ourselves a time out.

A walk through one of Nanaimo’s parks – fresh air, the smell of the ocean or the forest does wonders for the soul. Read a book, magazine or a newspaper. Watch a Christmas-themed movie – sometimes seeing others go through similar, or worse, circumstances is enough to put things into perspective.

Most importantly, focus on the true meaning of Christmas – or any holiday that occurs at year’s end – and simply be nice to the people around you.

Sharing good thoughts and feelings is infectious and you might leave more than just Santa smiling this Christmas.