It’s the time of year when holiday specials take over TV, and chances are you’ve likely watched Mickey’s Christmas Carol at least once in the past few weeks.
If not this year, you’ve probably seen it enough to remember this scene:
Scrooge McDuck and Mickey are at the office, and while Scrooge is doing his usual bah humbug thing, Mickey keeps insisting he show some compassion and have a giving spirit. Why? “Because it’s Christmas,” Mickey explains over and over again.
A simple enough reason. But that part in the movie always gets me – and not just because I don’t understand why these Disney characters wear shirts but never pants, even in the middle of winter.
It’s the concept that we have to cram all of our kind acts into December because it’s Christmas time.
Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s awesome for people to want to do something nice for others during the Christmas season. I hop right on that cheerful band wagon, too. It’s never a bad thing to be loving and caring.
But isn’t it important to be generous the other 11 months of the year, too? I shouldn’t be more compelled to donate to a charity just because of the time of year it is, but lots of us are.
Christmas and New Years always seems to put us in our little happy bubble that oddly only seems to last for those short weeks surrounding them.
Earlier this week while flipping through my notebook, I came across my New Years resolutions from last year. There were 14 of them meticulously scrawled out in red pen, likely in an attempt to make them stand out to my future self among all my other scribbles. Tallying up the number I had actually managed to follow through with, I came up with a lousy, pathetic three.
Why did I even bother making a list if I didn’t plan on sticking to it or even looking at it until 12 months later, only to see I had received a failing grade on an assignment I had given myself?
It’s not that the resolutions I made were lame; they were actually pretty realistic and beneficial to me and others. The problem was the timing.
Why is it always Jan. 1 that we feel the need to re-evaluate our lives and rearrange them? Why do we always opt to wait until the beginning of the next year to make a fresh start?
We can say we’re going to change all we want, but for most of us, that change is going to be gradual and may not happen with the snap of out fingers tomorrow.
Although the start of every year is the time we’re most focused on improving our lives and the holidays put us all in a giving mood, why should we always wait until that two-week window to think about improving our lives and being generous to others?
As we get ready for 2014, I don’t plan to make any of the same old resolutions or promises to myself that I may not actually keep.
But I do hope I remember to treat more of my days as if they were Christmas and New Years.
Let’s try a little harder to be the change we want to see year-round – not just when the season dictates.
Here’s to a happy new year!