Christmas welcomes two types of people.
Living in a city comes with being surrounded by 8 million other people. All of which celebrate Christmas with their own families. These 8 million people buying presents for however many other people results in a lot of shops being filled to the brim with urgency and impatience.
I fit into one of these two categories.
I don’t go out of my way to shop, but I don’t dislike crowds. Waiting in a queue doesn’t bother me, I see it as a chance to meet new people and chat to those ahead and behind me. We can’t see waiting as a waste of time, it’s purely a different use of our time.
There is another type of person.
They dislike queues, they dislike the crowds. Impatiently waiting and ‘wasting’ their time in a line that isn’t moving fast enough. Why isn’t it their turn yet?! The queues are always too long, the streets are filled with people in their way. The traffic lights stop them when all they want is to drive on.
I believe myself to be quite patient. I obviously see the inconvenience in excessive waiting, but ultimately we’re all in this season together and we have to work together. There is no point in getting frustrated at the teen behind the till because they’re working slightly slower than you would like. He’s probably working overtime to cover those who are taking leave. She may be a new Christmas temp. Be patient, this is the time to be merry and spread love. As cliché as it may be, it’s true. You will only ruin your own mood – and day – by acting otherwise.
So if you’re hurriedly finishing your Christmas shopping this week, or waiting in line for that much needed coffee before your shift at work, see this time as a personal break in your day. A time to talk to those around you; a time to take a breathe; a time to practice mindfulness.
Have a wonderful Christmas. Spread joy and practice patience.