December is here, and in the countries that celebrate Christmas, the Christmas spirit has already invaded everything: streets full of light, families decorating their houses, shops full of people buying presents, Christmas carols and other seasonal songs playing everywhere...

For many people, this time of the year is full of excitement and joy, although it also comes with a certain amount of stress: maybe we´re making preparations for travelling, or it´s our turn to entertain family or friends at our house. Maybe we´re dreading that "overdose" of family reunions and other events that usually take place around this time, or maybe this year we´re facing some situation that prevents us from celebrating the way we would like.

Maybe it´s the first Christmas without a loved one, who´s going to be very present in our hearts and our thoughts.

Or maybe we´re going through a rough patch of any kind, and our discomfort grows even bigger during this time, when it looks like it´s almost compulsory for all of us to be happy (our friend Raúl used to call it something like "the universal peace and love simulacrum", I think he took the idea from an episode of The Simpsons).

For many people, unfortunately, that discomfort is much much deeper... There may be feelings of sadness and loneliness that the rest of us are not able to understand from the outside.

In any case, it seems to me that we ourselves create most of the problems with our own expectations, at every level: from the expectations that society sells to us through advertisements and movies, to the ones we each have on how we must behave or what we must feel, and the ones created by the dynamics in our family or our closest social groups. Year after year, we "buy" those expectations, and then we feel disappointed and frustrated when we are not fulfilled.

That´s why this year I´d like to propose something different to you. I propose that you rekindle your excitement for something related to Christmas (if you celebrate Christmas that is, or at least the winter holidays, or the new year). It can be a particular tradition or anything else you can think of that you´re excited about, no matter how small. And once that moment arrives, I propose that you let go of expectations and LIVE IT, enjoy it as it is, the way it´s happening, without comparing it to how you would have liked it to happen. Because things change, life is constantly changing, and the only moment that you can really enjoy is the present.

So, what about you? What are you excited about this Christmas?

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