I wanna be like Buddy the Elf.

My mission this holiday season is to be more like Buddy the Elf. Not so much the eating-gum-off-the-NYC-streets or maple-syrup-on-spaghetti parts, but more the happy-happy-joy-joy-spread-the-love-bear-hugs-all-around parts.

In a nutshell, this means more hugs, more hellos, more singing Christmas carols, more childlike enthusiasm, more no-holds-barred love and joy and Christmas cheer and happiness. Elf is my all-time favorite flick (I also consider it a highly underrated tool for spiritual development), so why not bring the joy to life?

Buddy is everything I want to be, this season and always. Joyful. Unguarded. Loving. Innocent. Unafraid.

Besides, what better time of year to open our hearts? It’s hard, I know. The world can crush you — just ask Walter Hobbes. It can chip away at you, break you down — punch and kick you till the only way you survive is by building an impenetrable wall to hide your heart behind. But that’s no life. I should know; walls have always been kind of my thing. Despite outward appearances, the Great Wall of Hannah has been around a long time. When you’re super sensitive, playing turtle-in-a-shell seems like a totally reasonable strategy for self-protection.

But no more. I’m going all Berlin Wall on that crap — and opening myself up to infinite possibilities and infinite love.

Join me in this journey. Break down your wall. Let people in. Smile more. Spread the love. Christmas is as good an excuse as any.

Here are some ways I’m bringing the Buddy-ness:

  • Saying good morning, hello or at the very least, smiling at everyone. Really, everyone.
  • Hugs. Lots of hugs. Cheek kisses, too. We don’t touch each other enough.
  • Paying it forward in the Starbucks drive-through (or anywhere else it’s applicable).
  • Baking yummy treats for my neighbors and colleagues. Everyone loves pumpkin cookies.
  • Chatting with strangers, particularly those who might look lonely or out of sorts. They’re the ones that need my kindness the most.
  • Planning especially thoughtful Christmas surprises for the people I love. It’s not about $, just caring and consideration.
  • Giving $1 to every homeless person who asks. Or more.
  • Caroling. Or at least leading spontaneous sing-a-long sessions with friends.
  • Offering a favor. Babysitting. Moving help. Odd jobs. Whatever.

What about you? #bringthebuddy

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