Whether you believe in Santa or not, are there worthy lessons to learn from him – things we can apply in our family, profession, and community?
I sure can, and I’m thankful that he comes around once a year to remind me of my choices.
In much of our world, Christmas has been celebrated for centuries. Even if it’s not your tradition, it’s hard not to see, hear, and feel the love and merriment that abounds. Much of this is embodied in that jolly fella from the far north.
Let’s have a closer look at this dude.
Logically, can you think of any good reasons why a rational man would gather together his wife and a bunch or vertically-challenged friends and move to the North Pole? Logically, even Sangudo, Alberta would be a better choice for a toy factory. However, real estate may be inexpensive in that land of icier and snowier. And the hassles of global competition, government policies, and sensationalized media may not venture that far. Free enterprise at it’s best, with woollen underwear!!
On the other hand, logic doesn’t have anything to do with the essence of life – what Santa stands for. If we consciously implement Santa values to our lives, do you think we can be more kind, caring, and loving? Will we feel more peaceful, hopeful, and joyful? Will our businesses and work-teams thrive, regardless of the swings of the economy?
I think so. Let me explain.
Santa’s business is about real community. With his leadership, everyone works together as a team, with the intent of creating happiness, joy, and making this world a better place. Every person in the community cares for, and supports one another because they know that each individual is an integral part of the whole. If one person is not successful, nobody succeeds. There can be no weak links in the chain, or Christmas won’t happen.
To be successful, each person must feel good about themselves and their contribution. They need to feel loved, respected, appreciated, and included as a part of the team. In order to feel that way, they must also give love, respect, appreciation, and attention to others. It is a perpetual cycle – the more love is given; the more love is received. We know this principle works because Santa’s business and community have been growing successfully for millennia. I’ve not heard of corporate malfeasance or labour protests at the North Pole. Have you?
Are there challenges for Santa and his team – to fulfil this huge deadline driven order?
I’ve not been there so I don’t know. I can imagine there are power outages, equipment breakdowns, transportation and weather inconveniences.
But when it comes to the human resources, I’ll bet there is not one second wasted on non-productive, family- and community-destroying, non-Santa activities such as:
– whining about the weather,
– complaining about the boss,
– blaming others for what he/she did, or didn’t do,
– criticizing a wife, husband, or child for their behaviour,
– protecting hidden agendas,
– ignoring or selective listening,
– explosions of anger,
– withholding feedback,
– disrespectful verbal bombings, and
– _____________ (you fill in the blank with your favourite non-accountable behaviour).
I’ve got a challenge for you, should you choose to accept it. And I guarantee it will positively affect the quality of your relationships, ability to focus, productivity, and success. And most importantly, I know you will feel more peaceful and happy.
Here it is: Consciously experience life as if you are Santa.
You don’t need to wear his body, but accept his heart, wisdom, and vision. Here are a handful of common-sense Santa strategies. You can adapt them to suit your suit, as long as your intention is honourable.
1. Smile and laugh. It’s a great way to start the day. The more you do it, the better you’ll feel. Be a perpetually jolly elf.
2. When speaking to someone, look deeply into his/her eyes. Not just “at” their eyes, which allows the peripheral sight of the face, body and surroundings – look deeply into the center of the center of the pupils. Notice the childlike purity, innocence, and love. If you don’t sense it, you are trying too hard, or are allowing past experiences to pollute your vision.
3. Ask good questions. Be genuinely interested in who they are, their passions, and what they want. Santa is famous for his questions. You may wish to re-read last month’s article about using “why-less” questions.
4. Listen attentively, with your ears, eyes, and heart. Be empathetic and create what’s called “resonance” – an attunement to their meaning and feelings – an authentic connection. This is not to be mistaken as sympathetic, where you become involved in, or own their feelings – that would be a waste of your energy.
5. Respond kindly, respectfully, mindfully. Think about how Santa would respond, and use that thought as a guide. Find ways to put a positive spin on every conversation. Its fun and nobody’s eyesight was ever hurt by looking at the bright side.
I know you know this stuff already, and you know these approaches work. You’ve used them, and so have I.
So, here’s where the runners hit the rooftop, kiddo.
Do you apply these Santa strategies consciously, consistently, and persistently every day all year through?
My answer is “no.” What about you?
Do you experience peace, joy, happiness, and success every moment?
My answer is “no” again, but those things are on my Christmas list. They are what I want. And I know I’ll experience them if I make Santa-like choices.
What about you? What choices are you going to make, now?