Here we go again: another Christmas season is ramping up and I wonder: 

Are you ready? 

I don’t mean are your gifts wrapped and under the tree. I mean are you ready for all of the silliness that comes with long to-do lists and unexpected sideswipes that can invade what should be a joyful time of year. 

After all, we’re celebrating the birth of Jesus and birthdays should always be enjoyable, right?

Our challenge is perspective. 

Somehow over the decades, we got lost in the wonder and magic of a Coca Cola promotion that stuck. Now for the most part, instead of the central focus of the season is about the all-important life lessons Jesus 

taught like kindness, forgiveness, and compassion, at the center of Christmas is a jolly fellow in a red suit, who flies around the world delivering presents to hopeful children and adults who trust that Santa has their name on the nice list and not on the naughty list.

I love the magic and beauty of the decorations, music and special food prepared at this time of year. I have my own tradition of making a plum pudding that my Mum and God Mum made for decades and the white fruitcake that my husband’s Mum made; it wouldn’t be Christmas without them. For me now, this season is about kindness, forgiveness, and compassion the gifts you won’t find in stores…they’re one size fits all and everyone needs them.

As anticipation is building and shoppers are shopping, what I’d like to recommend is a focus on the gifts we really need in our world. 

We need more presence; not presents. We need to acknowledge one another, be there and care for each other. 

What about the neighbor whose child or spouse passed away or the new immigrant who might not have a community here? Could we not deliver some kindness or compassion to them over this Christmas season? How about delivering a smile to your neighbors and your family, asking how they’re doing and then really listening to the answer?

Joy and happiness are not dependant on our bank balance, our age, size, nationality or our status. 

Happiness and joy are cultivated in our hearts and once shared freely with others have an amazing ripple effect. 

Experts who study kindness say that even when we observe someone being kind, we benefit. So there you have it: you give a gift; you receive a gift. 

This festive season, give a little bit of love to everyone you encounter. 

It could be that your kindness, empathy, and compassion are the Christmas miracles that change someone’s life.

Kathie Donovan
Currently a Wellings Ambassador and Living Well Advisor, Kathie was Canada’s
broadcasting sweetheart for almost three decades as well as co-host of the beloved television show Regional Contact. Kathie is a gifted storyteller who shone a light on characters and creative types tucked into small towns. Her love of connecting people, caring and sharing is inspiring. Kathie has authored two books with a third on the way; she continues to build on her annual event “Refresh Your Passion” and other workshops. Kathie’s priorities are to love what she does and live well.

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