‘Tis the season to be jolly

‘Tis the season to be jolly! At the expense of repeating myself I would like to state the fact that

literally, and not just as a cliché, “this is the season to be jolly”.

Whatever your belief about the meaning of Christmas and/or if this time only represents a holiday

season the same expectations are held by most of us. We want to be happy, we want to leave all

our troubles behind, we want to share and give, we want the whole world to be in love………ok, I am

getting a little carried away, but for the most part it’s true. So this is my reminder to you.

Having spent years in the retail trade and in particular in shopping centres I have seen the best

intentions turn to downright nasty and selfish in the extreme. And, from all varying socio-economic

groups and areas. In fact, the worst I have seen is amongst the so-called “beautiful people” of the

leafy suburbs.

Patience and goodwill fly right out the window. The car parking area is “dog eat dog” for spaces

with drivers speeding around to grab that elusive vacant spot. Look out any kids that, now being

on holidays, should wander out into the way absent mindedly singing a Christmas carol. Once

inside the mall things are no better and pushing in front of other shoppers, ramming people with

trolleys, raised voices at shop staff etc etc…. If not by you, well, you’ve certainly seen it from others.

I can recall one customer we served had the bottom lip actually trembling with stress while being


Doesn’t sound all too jolly to me. arlo xmas

So let’s consider some measures to help ourselves and others.

I used to remind my staff every year around this time to treat our store like a happy haven for shoppers. When they visited we made sure they would leave more relaxed than when they came in.

It didn’t take much effort; just a little consideration for what everyone was experiencing and slowing

the pace a little thereby giving the gift of allowing them to take a breath. Simple as that.

Here are a couple of tips to sidestep the hassle and keep a smile on your face.

• Make a list of what you need to do and what you need to buy. It’s much easier to plan your

• Give yourself time. When you are in a rush because you’re running late everything seems to

• Shop or investigate via the internet. This can be done in the comfort of home any hour of

• Stores are open for many extra trading hours during this period. Check the variations of

• Park a little further away than normal. Wherever you shop the hassles will always be closest

• Get a packet of Rescue Remedy jubes to chew on. They give instant calm and are a great

• Be polite on the roads out in the traffic. You won’t get there any quicker by zipping in and

These are just a couple of tips to help and in the end it’s up to you to relax, breathe, smile and

impart on others the goodwill that you have inside. And who knows, if you’re calm and relaxed and

happiness exudes uncontrollably it may just become infectious. And so in the words of Arlo Guthrie

or very similar ……

“If two people, two people do it, in harmony,

they may think they’re both faggots and they may copy them.

And three people do it, three, can you imagine, three people walking in

and being jolly and walking out. They may think it’s an

organization. And can you, can you imagine fifty people a day, I said

fifty people a day walk around during Christmas being jolly and

walking out. And friends they may think it’s a movement.

And that’s what it is, the Christmas Anti-massacre Jolly Movement, and

all you got to do to join is sing it the next time it comes around on the


Well friends, there’s not going to be a guitar to sing to but if you listen real closely I am sure you’ll

hear a carol or two coming over a store sound system to let loose. And you had better sing loud

otherwise you won’t hear yourself over me!

Wishing everyone a jolly and relaxed Christmas holiday period.


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