What do I want for Christmas this year? Civility. I wanted the same thing for Chanukkah a few weeks ago. Did I get what my heart desired? No…at least not yet.
Regardless of what religious credo you follow, or do not follow, commercialism has commandeered this time of year. Instead of focusing on the love that exists between family and friends, commercialism has usurped the true focus of the holidays, replacing it with a quest to buy the hottest toys, most expensive gifts and throw the most lavish of parties. Bah humbug!
The spirit of the holiday season is supposed to be about peace on earth and good will to our fellow human beings. I personally feel that everyone, the world over, should employ such practices daily. You do not have to be Mother Teresa to accomplish such a “feat”; In fact, it only takes two simple words, “Be Civil”. I attempt to practice this mantra every day. To be successful, all it takes is opening the door for a stranger or loved one, throwing your loose change into the Salvation Army collection bucket, thanking the person who bags your groceries or allowing someone to merge in front of you on the highway.
The lack of civility, especially during the holidays, is disturbing. How many stories have we read about fights breaking out in the midst of holiday sales? I doubt this is what any higher power had in mind.
I know we are all going through trying times these days but regardless of how bad your life may be going there is always someone who has it worse. Instead of trying to find a way to place yourself at the top of the “poor me” pyramid, take a deep breath and remember everything you have to be thankful for. If you cannot come up with anything, though I trust that you can, go out, smile at a sales clerk, hold open a door for a mother shopping with her three young children and in-laws, and meaningfully wish the Santa ringing the Salvation Army bell a “Happy Holidays”. In doing so, you will give both yourself and someone else something to be thankful for this holiday season. You will have also given me, and the entire world, the gift of civility!
I wish you all a holiday season filled with joy, laughter and civility that carries on throughout the years to come!