Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Take a Moment Tuesday
Several weeks ago, as I drove home one evening, I saw at least two houses in my neighborhood that had already decorated for Christmas. I mean full-out, lights and music and all the ho-ho-ho every electric socket could muster kind of decorating. Within the same area, two other houses still had all their Halloween decorations up – bizarre orange/black lights glowing and seeping into the street. What an odd combination.
It seems we have lost Thanksgiving (on many levels). We begin getting ready for Halloween practically at the end of August, then slide right into Christmas. Even the traditional day after Thanksgiving “black Friday” has now started weeks earlier in advertising, in stores, and on the internet. We’re driven by culture and media to move faster and faster, go-go-go towards the holidays, and run that hamster wheel life into the ground. And let’s not forget, it all has to be absolutely perfect (as if Martha was going to come in, inspection ready in her white gloves).
In the 80’s a fitness motivator was famous for her phrase “STOP THE MADNESS!” Today, let’s take her advice. Exercise your put on the brakes muscles, and take a moment to enjoy the next few days. Don’t think about Christmas yet. Put aside all things Christmas and focus on your day today. Enjoy the sights/sounds/smells/feel of your immediate moment. If you are in the grocery store shopping, watch other shoppers. Look at the colors, the fresh veggies, the smells as you go past the bakery (because they’re probably fanning out the baking pie aroma to entice you). Listen to all the sounds around you, from the piped-in music to the funny conversations at the check-out line.
Purposefully cultivate a thankful spirit as you prepare your home and heart for Thanksgiving. Begin your blessings list that you can share at the table. Is there anyone else you can invite that would be blessed by spending Thanksgiving at your table? A single mom with her kids? A single person who may be alone this Thanksgiving? An elderly person you may know? As you go through your pre-Thanksgiving preparation, be hyper-aware of each moment, and be thankful for it. If it’s cleaning, be thankful for the roof over your head. If it’s laundry, be thankful for clothes to wear. You get the idea. Begin thanks-living.