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I remember when “Fiddler on the Roof” came out in theaters. Who can forget the earworm that came with Tevye’s song “Tradition”?
Traditions give us a sense of security, remind us of our humanity and quietly promise stability in an ever-changing world.
Until they don’t.
Christmas is full of traditions of every ilk — religious, family, cultural, and more. This year I pulled out ornaments we’ve hung on our tree for years. And I found I didn’t want to look at any of them. I put them back in their box. Our tree this year has a topper and lights. Period.
Considering Nellie is still pretty much a pup, no ornaments is not a bad thing. But it made me feel guilty for some ridiculous reason.
That’s a symptom, I think, of traditions that have become toxic. Either we’ve outgrown them, or they no longer bring that comfort and security to us and no longer serve a purpose. How many of us are keeping traditions alive that no longer make us happy?
Japanese de-cluttering expert Marie Kondo says if something doesn’t “bring us joy,” we should get rid of that thing. I think that mindset needs to include traditions that no longer serve us, even if it’s just for a season. Wasn’t that the conclusion of the Fiddler’s story? The traditions he clung to so hard and for so long were causing pain and turmoil, and he let them go and adapted.
What traditions are you keeping that no longer bring you joy? There’s nothing stopping you from changing it, from setting that tradition aside and doing something new. And you know what else? There’s nothing stopping you from picking that tradition back up next year if you want.
I needed that permission this year. Maybe you do, too.
For the next two weeks we’ll have an early deadline thanks to the holiday schedule. Please send content to email@example.com and ads to firstname.lastname@example.org by the end of the day on Friday, Dec. 20 for the Dec. 26 edition and by Friday, Dec. 27 for the New Year’s Day edition.
Speaking of the new year, the HT is hosting a 2020 vision board workshop on Thursday, Jan. 2 at 7 p.m. at the Meeker Co-working space. We’ll provide the board, the glue sticks and the scissors. Please bring an old magazine, or magazines, to share. RSVP to email@example.com so we know how many boards to provide. Donations are accepted.
If you’ve never made a vision board, it’s a fun, easy way to chart a course for the year to come. Vision boards aren’t as restrictive as a list of resolutions but still give you a way to set an intention for your year.
By Niki Turner | firstname.lastname@example.org