It’s nearly Christmas…you knew that.
It’s such a confusing time of year. Definitely my favourite season, I absolutely love it but it’s also one that really grates on me.
I wasn’t going to do a specific Christmas episode of the podcast. However, after a conversation I had with someone recently I thought it only right that I should.
We decided it was a good opportunity to discuss some struggles that other introverted and highly sensitive people might identify with (they’re not all just about going to parties).
Space, Peace, Advent
December is great. I really like it. For me it has become a time to enter reflective ‘slow mode’ and look back over my year and begin thinking about the future. It’s about the in-between, the anticipation, the waiting. This is great space to experience. This amidst the chaos and over-stimulation of sleepless commercialism, relentless crowds and a non-stop stream of things to do.
If you value and experience the peace and space of this season it seems important to demonstrate it, to lead by example, showing the world that it’s possible to actually slow down and notice what’s around us.
One of the most prevalent Christmas traditions in the UK (I don’t know about elsewhere) happens around the beginning of October when we all have to say ‘urgh, this shop has it’s decorations up; Christmas gets earlier and earlier each year’.
It has become a great British tradition.
To be honest I don’t really care about the decorations. But in this episode I discuss some of the commercial aspects of this time of year that do bother me.
Everyone is Suddenly Everywhere
Generally if I see a crowd I go the other way. I hate crowds. But it’s really hard to escape them at the moment. Everyone seems to be everywhere. I don’t know where they’ve all been the rest of the year but now they’re wherever I am. And crowds truly bring out the worst in us.
I have to keep reminding myself that I am a part of the crowd. Just like the old addage, ‘you are not stuck in traffic, you ARE traffic’. It’s easy to point fingers. But if I’m in the crowd and don’t want to be then in all likelihood the crowd is full of people who don’t want to be. I can empathise with those people, I understand and feel their pain.
DO IT! It’s Not Christmas Otherwise
I don’t like mulled wine/warm alcoholic drinks or mince pies. There, I said it.
This never seems to go down well.
“But it’s Christmas. How can you have Christmas without mulled wine or mince pies?”
People always seem to have an opinion on what you have to do to be festive or because it’s Christmas. I’m pretty stubborn and don’t like being told what I SHOULD do.
And yes, I’m the kind of person who deliberately tries to not enjoy something if I’ve been told ‘it’s hilarious/the greatest thing ever/you’ve got to watch it, you’ll love it’. I’m not proud of it, but it’s my natural ingrained response to hyped up language, to pull the thing in question apart and unravel the hype surrounding it.
People People People
Obviously we need to talk about the social aspects of the season. There are crowds, there are parties, there are gatherings with friends and family. And I very much enjoy being around friends and family, especially if it’s for long enough to establish a sense of rhythm and routine in the days.
Rhythm and routine provides opportunity for space, and for me it’s the one time of year I genuinely feel able to completely switch myself off and just chill out.
How About You?
Do you have any techniques for creating boundaries and managing the social aspects of this season?
What are the big struggles you seem to experience this time of year? Please leave a comment below.