Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year. For About The First Hour.

It's November and everyone is starting to feel the stirrings of holiday excitement! It seems as soon as Halloween is done, the very next day the stores are brimming with Christmas music and gift ideas. I have to admit it gets me in the holiday spirit! I think ahead to decorating the house, putting up the tree and visiting with all my family. It wasn't always this way though. Once apon a time I worked in retail and the sound of Frosty the Snowman filled me with dread!

In retail, as soon as the calender flips from October to November, you are existing in a perpetual state of Christmas EVERY DAY. The human psyche is just not equipment to maintain that level of holiday cheer for nearly two months straight. Not helping the matter is the holiday music play list. There are not that many songs on it. If you're only shopping you may not notice this. However, if you are in the store the whole day you're the lucky soul who gets to hear Walking In a Winter Wonderland about a dozen times. I had two saving graces that got me through the shopping season. The first was that I was in charge to doing the Christmas and other holiday displays. To your horror, I'm sure, there is a period where Thanksgiving, Halloween and Christmas displays are up at the same time. I'm soooo sorry! The second was that I didn't have to run a cash or, heaven forbid, work at customer service. I've done this, and it is amazingly stressful.

I have had the good fortune of working on both sides of the counter. Most people who work in retail would love if everyone has to work there at some point in their lives. It teaches you a lot about yourself, about others, and about human nature in general. I'd like to think that I have a certain amount of wisdom in this area that I can share. Granted, it's not glamorous by any means, but if you aren't learning something in whatever you're doing, you're doing it wrong. So I plan on doing two more blog posts. One from both perspectives; the retail worker and the customer. The holiday cheer can quickly run on empty when you're stressed, waiting in line FOR EVER, and generally feeling like NOTHING is going your way. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Hopefully I can provide a survival guide for both parties that will keep you all from strangling each other.

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