Shine bright!

Hello, everyone. Once again, I find myself surprised that another year has gone by. With daylight saving time and the end-of-year rush, we may find ourselves chasing after our tails this December. I have something to confess: I have not always fully enjoyed the festive season in the past because of the pressure I feel to be merry and bright. I’ve always been deeply sensitive to those less fortunate. Christmas was a time when I felt guilty about my privileges, like a safe environment and good health. If you are sick or in pain or grieving the loss of a loved one, Christmas may not be the most wonderful time of the year.  

Acts of kindness create a sense of connection and community

In recent years, I’ve come to appreciate the festive season. I’ve discovered that transforming my guilt into something positive by giving back through small gestures helps me find more meaning in this time of year. Research shows that engaging in acts of kindness and gratitude is associated with heightened feelings of well-being. During the Holiday season in particular, which can be a difficult time for many, the act of helping others can be a powerful source of joy and fulfillment.

Small ways to spread some light

I’d like to share with you a few ways to spread some light around you and, I hope, help you to feel it too:

  • Call a friend you haven’t talked to in a while.
  • Offer a helping hand to a neighbour.
  • Leave a loved one a surprise note.
  • Give a genuine compliment.
  • Drop off things you do not use at your local shelter.
  • Tell someone that you appreciate them.
  • Greet strangers.
  • Volunteer at a local charity.
  • Donate to a food bank.
Anaïs Fortin-Maltais, Well 50+& Caregivers program coordinator

I’d like to remind you that it is okay to not be okay over the holidays. That being said, the act of giving during Christmas can help us step outside our concerns and immerse ourselves in the true spirit of the season—generosity, compassion, and selflessness. In turn, this selfless giving brings a profound sense of joy and warmth to our hearts, reminding us that the true magic of Christmas lies in the bonds we share and the positive impact we can have on the lives of others.

On that note, I wish you and yours joy and light over the Holiday Season and all the best for 2024,




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