By Rev. Tim Dunn, MDiv, LCSW, LCADC

“Tis the season to be jolly” are lyrics in the traditional Christmas carol “Deck the Halls.” A contemporary  variation on those lyrics could be “Tis the season to be busy.” We may approach the upcoming holidays with mixed feelings, expectancy of joyous times spent in celebrative gatherings with family and friends and in church. It can also be a stressful season due to demands of preparations, gifts to purchase, and places to go. One may even wish that the holidays would be over soon.

We may help to make the holiday season more joyous and less stressful by prioritizing our schedules and avoiding over-extending ourselves. Be mindful about our pace, activities, and budget for holiday spending. Take time away from busy malls, and take time to listen to or sing favorite Christmas carols, watch a favorite Christmas movie with family, or read a Christmas story to a child.

Most important, recall the true meaning of Christmas. It is the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, who said, “It is more blessed to give then to receive.” Someone once said to me, “I wish Christmastime was all year round because people are friendlier this time of year.”  So stress less and enjoy the season while it is here!