Three Commandments for the Holiday Season
We have mixed emotions about the holiday season. On the one hand, it's beautiful. The holidays present channels for tradition, family time, and reflection. On the other hand, it's nasty. Consumerism can turn humans into monsters, utterly oblivious to etiquette and devoid of manners. To counteract the latter, we have created a list of commandments to keep in mind.
1. We Shalt Remainith Calm in Grocery Stores:
We're frantically running around the grocery store because we forgot the cranberry sauce. There are people everywhere, and they're all in our way; in fact, we suspect that the universe must've planted them there to smite us.
Finally, after fighting the hordes of strategically cosmic-planted humans, we make it to checkout just as the cashier closes his or her lane. We have a choice: We can lose our proverbial sh*t, taking the lane closure as a personal attack and start cursing out the worker, or we can (kindly) say, "Hope you're off to somewhere a little less crazy!" and move on to the next line. It's just cranberry sauce. We're going to be okay. The turkey will go on.
2. We Shall Practiceth Fitting Room Etiquette:
We need an outfit for the holiday party. Unfortunately, so does the rest of the world. We're in the retail store with the masses, and we're waiting in line for the fitting room. Here, we have another choice: We can leave all our clothes in a heap on the floor of the room, slowing down the time it takes to ready the room itself and simultaneously disrespect the man or woman who works there, or we can hang up the clothes because we are big bad adults.
We can even make friendly conversation while we're waiting in line, instead of rolling our eyes and scoffing at the person who has come out for a review of the sweater she's just tried on. Amazing! Insert applause here. 👏👏👏
3. Alloweth us to Remember that the Holidays are About the Mushy Stuff From the Heart:
Before we use our rhetoric to boisterously and ridiculously complain about our coupon that expired, let us turn to love. The person behind the counter is a human, trying to make a living, just like us. Let's use our heartstrings to connect. "How's your day going?" or "It must be intense, dealing with this many people." Let us give them a chance to breathe.
Also, instead of cursing the holidays because someone ruined it for us years ago, let us remember that we can make new memories. It doesn't have to be about the parent who never showed up or the awful ex who cheated on us. We can make cookies for our neighbor, or volunteer at a soup kitchen, or go on a scenic drive with an album that we've never heard before.
All in all, we can define our holiday sentiments around what we love, not what we hate.