**SPOILER ALERT: Don’t listen to this episode with your kids in the car!**
Santa Claus has been around for generations. As adults, we think of Christmas as a time for kids to get excited over presents and visits with Santa. We want to make it a magical time for them and tend to go overboard with the gifts, lights, and festivities. Some parents use Santa Claus as a way to keep their kids in line. After all, Santa knows who’s been naughty or nice. If children are good, they’ll get the presents they want. If they’re naughty, they risk receiving coal in their stocking or, in some cultures, being beaten with a stick.
But what about our own Christmas experiences? How have they shaped us as adults?
In this episode, BT and I discuss how the Santa Claus mythos could be detrimental to developing a successful mind.
- Whether the intention behind the Santa Claus myth is to encourage focused, good behavior or just to manipulate kids
- How jolly fat Saint Nicholas was actually propaganda created by a Civil War cartoonist in the 1860s as a way to bring the country together, because people were so divided over the Civil War
- The difference between magical thinking and the law of cause and effect
- How the idea of Santa can get kids to think of success only as an end game (i.e., “If I’m good enough, a fat man will come down a chimney and give me presents”)
- How the media portrays success only as an end result—it doesn’t show the work, discipline, practice, tough decisions, failures, and mistakes it took to get there
- How three Christmas characters—Zwarte Piet, Belsnickel, and Krampus—have been used to scare kids into behaving.
In my company, we teach the law of cause and effect, and how diligent work (not luck or wishful thinking) gets you the desired outcome. While we all have good intentions to celebrate Christmas in the same old ways, we must be honest about the long-term effects those traditions have. We should critically reflect on our own experiences that we had as children around Santa.
However you choose to celebrate, we wish you all a Merry Christmas!
Links & Resources
See how the Law of Cause & Effect can get you the desired outcome by listening to these previously released episodes from The Successful Mind Podcast
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