Allan Takes Aim Blog

The season to be normal

Posted on: 19 December 2012

Have you noticed how people refer to the last few weeks before Christmas as ‘the silly season’? I don’t think it’s silly at all.

In actual fact it’s pretty much the season when people revert to normal as they go about the business of finishing off the year, thinking more about their friends and family and the cards, letters and gifts they’ll send/give/receive, spending a bit more time socializing and looking forward to their holidays It’s all very normal stuff if you ask me.

Is it normal to work like mad to finish something off? Yep, sure is! In fact as well as being normal it’s very satisfying.

Christmas means different things to different people, but it seems to me to be all about celebrating the existence of his benevolent majesty, Father Christmas, acknowledging the solstice and finishing off the year. In the northern hemisphere Christmas is a confirmation that the days are getting longer. Down here, by Christmas day the days are getting shorter. Maybe in the southern hemisphere we should have a celebration on the 25th of June.

If we didn’t have Christmas we’d all go nuts.

The fact that parliaments across Australia shut down for a couple of months has a big impact on the normalizing process because when parliaments close down, journalists and commentators close down as well. What that does is flush out of the print and electronic media the tripe and nonsense that clogs it up for the other 46 weeks of the year. For starters instead of waking up in a lather listening to the frenetic Fran Kelly, I’m listening to the dulcet, boring tones of Roy Slaven.

With speculators, hedge fund operators and screen jockeys taking a break, every one with a self-managed super fund can breathe easier as the stock exchange returns to normal, if only for a couple of weeks.

Taking a holiday in January seems to be a normal thing to do in Australia.
This year Christine, Honey and I are whizzing up to northern NSW to spend a week at the beach with my daughters, Jo and Lisa and their families. (Why don’t you become a friend of Honey, wonder dog from Canberra on Facebook- honeymillercanberra? She’s sitting here beside me wagging her tail at the very thought!)

Paul Pearsal in his book, ‘Super Immunity’ said we need to take at least one 21 day away-from-home holiday each year if we’re to get the most out of a holiday. A week is not enough. It’s too frantic.

Leonardo Da Vinci said:

‘Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer. Go some distance away because then the work appears smaller and more of it can be taken in at a glance and a lack of harmony and proportion is more readily seen.’

Going to the cricket on Boxing Day, watching it on TV or listening to it on the radio is another normal thing to do in this country. On the other hand having a sale on Boxing Day doesn’t seem to me to be a good idea at all. Whilst I know there are plenty of people in essential services and hospitality who have to be on deck, shop assistants don’t have to join them. Where I come from Boxing Day was always a holiday. Give me a break!

Whoever thought up the idea of opening shopping centres on the day after Christmas day needs their head read? I think we ought to have a shopping moratorium for a few days after Christmas and let everyone have a few days off. Surely there are enough days during the year to go shopping.

In fact, if the governments of Australia had a genuine concern for people’s health they’d declare the week between Christmas and New Year ‘National Recharge Week’. During that time people could do the things they don’t have time to do during the rest of the year, particularly nothing.

Whether you’re staying home or going away, this year spend as much time as you can between Christmas and New Year doing nothing. There are 51 other weeks in the year to fill up with rush and nervous haste.

You could broaden the concept of doing nothing to include things like reading, going to the pictures, playing cards, doing lunch, getting a bit of exercise, having a siesta, but definitely no work, no shopping for things you don’t need or things you can’t afford. It’s a good time to give your credit card a recharge as well!

If you’ve come to the end of the year stressed out of your brain, my advice is to get lost – in a book.
In the meantime stay tuned- highly tuned, and take it easy.

I wish you a merry Christmas and hope you receive your heart’s desire in the sack on Christmas morning.

John Miller


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