Be kind 

One of the things that I appreciate about social work is that there is an abundance of things to do. You aren’t required to stay doing the same thing for decades at a time. There’s room to try something different and learn a completely new set of skills while still working in the field. One thing I’ve noticed is that while people are all different, they share a lot of commonalities as well. There’s a video that went viral recently where a lady was recounting her experience at a popular store. She observed a customer being nasty to a cashier that appeared flustered and to be having a bad day. After confronting the customer, the cashier shared that he had had a very recent tragic loss and was struggling to pay rent. The lesson from the story is that you never know what someone is going through so be kind to everyone. The holidays can bring up so many emotions for people as they remember loved ones they miss and re-hash old wounds with family members. It’s a time that many people are especially fragile and as someone who has worked in mental health, I’ve noticed there’s a increase in suicide attempts after major holidays. This isn’t an appeal for world peace (as much as we need it). Just a reminder to try to be a bit more patient and kind as you interact with people. You don’t know their stories. 

This Christmas

This song is one of my favorite Christmas songs. I usually only listen to Christmas music during the appropriate times (between Thanksgiving and New Years) but I think this one is good all year round. Growing up Christmas was a special day. We would semi-decorate the house and have a tree with presents. As I’ve grown older, those traditions have ceased and now are only distant memories. This has definitely cut down on the stress and the expectations that usually accompany the holiday season. For the past two or three Christmases (is that a word?) I’ve ended up working at my job. Now, working is definitely not a bad thing but it takes away from the “holiday” feel of having a day off. However, I’m not complaining. However, for next year, I want to be relaxing and someplace warm on Christmas.