At the beginning of November, there’s always a helpful person who will point out—not knowing about the landmine they’re about to thrust me into—that there are only X days until Thanksgiving, or Advent, or Christmas.
I used to think that panic had to follow. But then, a few years ago, I made myself stop dreading Christmas for the four weeks prior. Instead of gripping the arms of my chair and screaming, I tried a different approach.
That approach involved forgetting that, to the rest of the world, the four weeks before Christmas ARE the Christmas season. I had to realize that Advent is worthy of its own preparation and it exists to help me better celebrate Christmas.