Wrapping up Christmas

Wrapping up Christmas

I’ve recently started teaching a course called The Power of Purpose. What I hadn’t realised is the impact the work you are teaching will have on your own life.  What a gift!

It’s been particularly interesting to notice how I’m now managing Christmas.  In previous years, Christmas has ended up a chore.  I start off with the best of intentions.  But, as it gets closer to the finish line on 25th and there’s still “too much to do” and “not enough time to do it all”, I feel more and more stressed and resentful.  I end up writing cards through gritted teeth, trudging around the shops desperate for inspiration for gifts but bereft of ideas and cursing that, once again, I’ve missed the last posting dates.  By the time it gets to Christmas Day, I’m exhausted and all I want to do is get through lunch and collapse in front of the telly.

This year it’s been different.  I set my purpose for Christmas to be about enjoying all the preparations in the run-up to Christmas Day and seeking connection with people throughout.  It’s transformed my experience.  Having that purpose in place supported me to get real about how long the preparations would take and to make the time for them.

Earlier this week, I sat in my living room, set Spotify to my favourite Christmas music and enjoyed the winter sunshine streaming through the windows as I wrapped parcels.  I’ve had warm and loving conversations with family members as we agree who will bring and do what towards our Christmas lunch.  With the result that I managed to renegotiate vegetable chopping (which I loathe) for sauce preparation (which I far prefer)!

On Wednesday, the last posting day for parcels, I headed for the Post Office.  I side-stepped the long queue for the counters and used the machine – and was supported by and had a delightful conversation with a member of staff.  Later, I headed to my favourite Hampstead pub and sat by the fire writing Christmas cards.  As I wrote, I held my loved ones in my mind’s eye and my heart was full of love and gratitude.  And, I paused from time to time during the afternoon to enjoy some lovely connections with the staff who were bustling about preparing for a busy evening ahead.

There’s still more to do but I’m clear about how long it will take and when it’ll happen and am feeling calm about it all.  Meanwhile, I made time today for a carol concert and supper with a dear friend and am looking forward to a Christmas concert in Worcester Cathedral with my father and a big walk on Christmas Eve with my brother.

I hope you have a purpose in place that is supporting you at this festive time.  Whether or not you’re conscious of it, you will have a purpose.  We always do.  Mine at this time used to be to ‘just get through it’.  The question to ask yourself is whether you have a purpose that you really want!

Wishing you a purposeful Christmas, full of peace and joy,