Monday, December 3, 2012

Embracing the Christmas spirit

Being the bigger person is something many of us pride ourselves for being. I'd hazard to guess if we are truly honest with ourselves, we are really only the bigger person some of the time.  I'm not immune from the cries of martyrdom when I let someone walk all over me, despite how I might have acted, or what I might have said to someone else only minutes before.

It's not a trend I'm proud of, but it is a trend I'm aware of. And because I find I'm more and more coming under fire in these situations, and lauding myself for being the "bigger person" by not, essentially, standing up for myself, only to turn around and resort of passive aggressive behaviours, I want to stop the cycle of these catty attacks. For the month of December, I'm going to try to focus only on the good in people.

December is a good month for this exercise -- while I identify with the Christian leanings of the yuletide season, a belief system which is increasingly less popular and increasingly mocked within my work and social circles, the message of peace, joy and love that are plastered on civic street decorations, lingering in the lyrics to Christmas carols blared through malls and smacking us in the face at the end of made-for-tv holiday movies know no religious bounds. Rather than waiting until the arbitrary flipping of the calendar to make my new year's resolutions, why not embrace the root of the Christmas season?

Being the bigger person is not about letting someone walk all over you, it's about not walking all over others. It's about spending less time licking your own wounds and more time ensuring you aren't inflicting wounds on others. It's not just about standing tall when other's tear you down, it's about building other people up.


  1. I like your philosophy. And, you're right, manners and good values needn't be religious, just smart choices for living.

    Those of us who strive to be our best, and to care about treating others with respect, are far ahead of those who don't care or aren't even aware of their behavior. I salute you for this aspiration.

  2. Well said Cara...As long as you try your best, that's all you can do. Tis the season :)

  3. What a great way to celebrate what is meant to be a loving season. Once I mentioned that one thing I liked about myself is tolerance and someone said that that's just another word for letting people walk all over you. I see it sort of like you said: being good to others without judgement and standing up for oneself or others when necessary.

  4. I think this is a great idea. Personally, I've been making an effort towards being positive. Abstract yes, but I've been brow beating myself into being as happy as I can in any circumstance. Not taking the negative spins that so many my age (and otherwise) like to force. People think I'm crazy when I grin and make opposing comments to their complaints, but I feel so much happier these days, even without things that are necessarily "good" happening.

    I think its great that you want to look at your own attitude without having a calendar day marking a resolution. You don't need a new year to make a change, just the change of mind set! Go Cara!

  5. Good for you, it's so easy to get caught up in the materialism of this season but it's really all about spending time with loved ones which I for one am excited to do!

  6. Love it! I think you hit on something very true: a lot of people get nasty at the end of the year and then try to make up for it with new years resolutions in January. I think embracing love, peace, and kindness this time of year sounds like a beautiful thing to do.

  7. yes talking over people is one of the worst things ever. and I do believe you are right by the end of year people get tired and spill it all out often speaking over

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