Still almost a month away, it feels like the Christmas celebrations are already well under way. Over the last two weeks, festive CDs have been loaded onto supermarket playlists, Christmas trees have been erected, and Buster the Boxer has become a national treasure.
Already whipping out the festivities, perhaps the shops just don’t have the storage room to hide away all their holiday decorations, so something celebratory must be out at all times. The pumpkins seemed to be swapped for Christmas trees overnight, without a day inbetween with an undecorated shop floor or window.
I am no Scrooge, and I do love the Christmas festivities, but when they start so early it suggests to me that we are a population that cannot be without a major celebration to look forward to.
It seems as if, had the world waited until December 1 to start decking the halls and singing ‘Shakin’ Stevens’, we would be in a state of limbo for the month between Halloween and the start of Christmas celebrations; hollow and confused by the lack of celebrations to think over.
The overall trend seems to be that we must always be looking forward to something greater than today. There is always a countdown or an event in the future in which we are more interested. We are wishing the days away and caring more about ‘37 sleeps ‘til Christmas’ than each day itself.
Why do we struggle so much to stop and appreciate each day for what it is worth? Sure, Christmas Day is inevitably more fun-filled than your average Thursday, but that doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy said Thursday without it just being another date to tick off the calendar.
It is not a wise lifestyle to live always starting your sentences with ‘I cannot wait until…’. As cliché as it may be, life is too short to disregard the present. So it is time to start appreciating the little things and being thankful for each day on its own. Yes, Christmas Day is usually one of the best days of the year, but it operates under the same principle as every other day: 24 hours for you to do with what you wish.
So if you find yourself focusing on the future a little too much, here is some advice to help you live in the now. Acknowledge that time flies. Wishing the days away is a dangerous feat; I cannot be the only one who checks Timehop only to be slightly scared that what I am seeing happened an entire year ago. And as much as it can be pleasant to look forward to Christmas, by the time it’s here you’ll be wondering where the time went, and that will be a whole month of your life gone.
Every day has potential. Especially when you are living in a city such as Edinburgh, where every day has the chance of being something special. When there are so many experiences to have and people to meet (it could have been Leonardo DiCaprio this week), you should start everyday thinking ‘what could happen today?’ This city is your oyster.
There are plenty of things to enjoy in the moment. Perhaps not the weather or impending exams, but somewhere in the midst of it, there’s a reason to be happy. Friends, family, finding a seat in Starbucks, convenient deals for ice cream in Tesco, the kindness of strangers – all good enough reasons to be pleased with any old Thursday.
Christmas Day will come around, but right now your time is today. Treasure it, appreciate what you have and don’t wish your life away.
[Image: Condesign @ Pixabay]