It’s another frosty winter wonderland in Cleveland. ‘Tis the season for icy wind, sloppy roads, and not nearly enough snow plows, blankets, or daylight. If my fake news is correct, our nation’s political climate is equally frigid, with the FBI chimney-deep in its Secret Santa investigation and a caravan of snowmen melting at the border. It seems easier than ever to say “fuck being jolly” and go Grinch this year, but no one likes a Grinch, a Scrooge, or a Drumpf. Instead, let’s try and be decent people for a change with these five easy tips to make holidays happy again.
SPREAD THE WEALTH – In the hierarchy of human existence, if you have extra food, money, time, or cigarettes, you’ve got the power to help someone less fortunate than yourself. Donate directly to the charity of your choice, or at least one that your political or religious organization has officially endorsed. Help serve food at a local shelter, regardless of whether its food you’d actually enjoy. You can simply spare some change on the street, or trade lives with someone higher or lower on the economic totem pole. Every bit makes a difference.
BE THE NICE – It’s true—life’s tough and everyone’s got problems. Some people just don’t know how to react without a mean spirit. We’ve each encountered meanies in grumpy pants, and they’re definitely on the naughty list. Before we judge, walk a mile in their pants. It’s not hard to offend or be offended, but a huge part of refusing to Scrooge is repelling negativity instead of responding with more. Be kind even to those who aren’t. Maybe you can turn their frown into anything other than a bigger frown.
STRENGTHEN THE BONDS – Let’s be honest—to live, laugh, and love always feels better when you have someone else to share it with, which is why we have family, friends, and prison pen-pals. Take the time get closer to your loved ones, then create new relationships with the everyday people around you. Maybe you’ll find a new friend in a coworker you’ve ignored, or start a new family with that guy at the gas station. You don’t know the opportunities you’re missing!
MAKE THE MENDS – We’ve all held a lifelong grudge at one time or another. We’ve also all secretly hated people, wishing them ill will until the day everyone dies. It’s time to let go. Try to reach out and make amends with anyone you’ve wronged and those who wronged you. Apologize, because you know what you did. Forgive, even if their apology wasn’t good enough. Take the bitter memories you were clutching and bury them in the open graves out back. You’re not gonna need them anymore.
BETTER THE SELF – If you’ve made it this far, the world is already a better place. Good job. But this one’s all about you. There’s a reason why each new year, we blow out the candles and make a resolution. A new year is a new start, or at least a new calendar, and a new calendar means you’ve got a perfectly arbitrary excuse to try and improve yourself. Sadly, you must be a severely flawed individual if you’re taking my advice on how to go Grinch-less this season, but you’re already bettering your existence by ceasing to read this nonsense.