A year like no other inflicts a Christmas (we sincerely hope) like no other. The festive and New Year period is usually a time for reflection, celebration and giving, and although this year is different, these sentiments are not entirely lost.
1. MANNERS COST NOTHING
For some workers, the Christmas period can be more manic than merry, and quite frankly, it’s often those who require their services who are at the root of the stress.
Medical professionals, healthcare workers, retailers, hospitality staff and many other key, essential and customer service personnel face increasing demand over the festive season - and this is without the added global virus pandemic!
So, whoever’s services you require this Christmas, just remember to be extra patient, courteous and polite to whoever is serving or treating you. Whatever you’re going through, they’re likely to be going through something similar.
It’s really no effort to say “thank you” and wish someone a “Merry Christmas”, or even write a positive review about their service! Small acts can make a huge impact, so ensure they’re positive.
And if certain organisations have let their customer service to take an unjustified nose dive … don’t take it out on the worker actually trying to help you!
Remember that many of the key and essential workers who have protected and provided for us throughout this pandemic will be working flat out over Christmas!
2. A CHRISTMAS CRISIS?
A COVID Christmas was always going to be hard to navigate despite the hopes of leeway with restrictions. It’s the one time of year many families and loved ones across the country and world come together, and this year, it’s just too greater a risk or not possible for millions.
While Christmas can be such a joyous occasion it can be a painful one, and this year, so many who would usually throw themselves into the merriment, face it alone and away from family.
It’s devastating and a horrible way to end a horrible year, but we can’t change it. What we can change are our attitudes.
If you’ve been fortunate enough to spend Christmas with loved ones, then appreciate it like never before. If restrictions mean you face enduring Christmas alone or away from loved ones for the first time, then remember you are not alone in this. 25th, December is just a day and the safety of you and your loved ones is far more important.
“Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind” - Miracle on 34th Street
There is no date to mark in your 2021 calendar as to when this madness will be over, but it will one day and it’ll feel like all our Christmas’ have come at once. When this day comes and you can be with your loved one without restrictions, don’t forget about those less fortunate at Christmas time and reach out to someone you know who may be struggling.
3. GOOD RIDDANCE 2020!
Has there ever been a more welcome New Year than 2021?
With that said, just because 2020 is nearly over, that doesn’t mean the pandemic is. Nevertheless, with the recent rollout of vaccines and other breakthroughs, we all hope 2021 will be a much happier, safer and brighter year.
While many have experienced a sudden disappointment with Christmas lockdown measures, without a doubt, Christmas and the festive period has introduced a distraction as welcome as 2021!
Jolly music, dazzling lights and gift shopping - even in a mask, it’s provided moments of normality. Debates over how early the tree can go up, whose turn it is to cook Christmas dinner and is Die Hard actually a Christmas film?
Winter and the dark nights will stick around for a while yet, and realistically we are facing future lockdowns. But let’s combat this by keeping the Christmas spirit and everything it means alive once the decorations have come down.
4. TRADITION IS OVERRATED ANYWAY
Nothing about 2020 has been ordinary, so why fret about having unordinary Christmas?
If you can, great! Enjoy it. If not, make it what you can. And enjoy it!
Watching someone open your gift on a screen isn’t the same as sitting around the tree together in a mountain of shredded wrapping paper, but it’s better than letting them do it in silence.
So many households have avoided the supermarkets or minimised their trips as much as possible, and while this may pose a challenge to a typical Christmas lunch, who cares if you have fish finger sandwiches or whatever else you find tasty!
Reduce the stress, and accept that while it may not be a perfect Christmas, there are more to come and they can have all the trimmings! How’s about a Christmas themed BBQ when it’s warmer and hopefully less restricted? And who said you can’t have crackers at Easter!
5. THE SEASON OF GOODWILL
If you’re struggling with your first, and hopefully last, COVID-Christmas then focus on how you can help others. After all, Christmas is all about giving.
Now, it’s been a tough year, and finances have been hit hard. But if you can’t donate money, donate your time and volunteer to a good cause.
If you’re lucky enough to receive a new intake of gifts, look at what in your possessions you no longer use and donate it to a better home.
Ensure you don’t waste food in a season in which we typically overindulge, find out where your local food banks are or deliver a meal to someone who is on their own.
With restrictions once again rising, it often feels like we’re at a loss with what we can do. But there is so much we can contribute to make this a better and less miserable Christmas for someone else, whether they’re a close friend or a complete stranger you’ll never meet.
We saw some incredible and courageous acts of humanity this year, and we will continue to do so in 2021 despite this wretched virus.
From everyone at Ambitions Personnel, have the Merriest Christmas possible, stay safe, be sensible and take care of those you can!