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Have a Mediocre Christmas

Have A Mediocre Christmas

by Jonathan Robinson

 

...another Holiday Season is upon us. So why am I wishing you a "Mediocre" Christmas?? Because I want you to be happy! I've seen that people who have expectations that their Christmas be wonderful and stress free almost always end up disappointed and depressed. The truth is that the Holidays are truly miserable for about 50% of the population. Having a mediocre Christmas would be a big step up for many people...and such a goal would surely put less pressure on you.

Since I was born Jewish, my family didn't celebrate Christmas. Thank God! I would watch people rush around during the Holidays-fighting crowds and traffic, and wonder why people did this to themselves. Ironically, because I didn't expect anything, I enjoyed the Holiday Season. My parents would give me a piece of chocolate and a small present for Hanukah, and I was a happy camper. That's the power of low expectations.

So this Season, expect to get stressed. Expect your family to annoy you, and expect sickness and other inconveniences to happen. If you do that, when such things do occur (as they almost certainly will), you'll be able to shrug them off. No problem.

As you lower your expectations, you may find that you are pleasantly surprised by moments of depth, connection, and joy. If that happens, good for you. If it doesn't, well you weren't expecting to have a good time anyway-so it's no big deal.

I hope this doesn't sound cynical. Studies show that the higher people's expectations are, the less they enjoy themselves. I have a friend who recently saw the play "Hamilton." He'd been waiting for months to see the play, and he paid $500 for his ticket. I asked him how the play was and he said, "The play was really, really good, but I had a terrible time." When I asked "Why?" he replied: "I had heard the play was so amazing that the fact that it was only really good made me feel incredibly disappointed." Don't let unrealistic expectations ruin your Holidays! Instead, aim for mediocrity. It's a lot less stressful...

On another note, if you are truly feeling down about the Holidays or any other thing, seek out something or someone that can help. The first gift you should buy this Holiday Season is something to take great care of you! Get a massage, buy something fun, or feel free to hire me for $100 a session. Sometimes something simple like a little gizmo or a single coaching/counseling session can make a tremendous difference.

So I wish for you mediocre Holidays. If you miss mediocre and you manage to have fun this Holiday Season, well, I guess that's acceptable. But whatever you do, don't aim for "wonderful Holidays." That can really make you miserable...

Warmly,

Jonathan Robinson                               Nov. 27th newsletter at findinghappiness.com