The Children AREN’T Nestled and the Creatures ARE Stirring

Clement Clark Moore needs a reality check. He penned “The Night Before Christmas.”

Moore made the whole thing up, including eight tiny reindeer. I think he wanted to do a good thing, but he sets unrealistic expectations that create dissatisfaction.

(Clement Clark Moore’s poem was originally titled “A Visit from St. Nicholas.”)

Sugar plum.

The children aren't nestled and sugar plums aren't even plums.

What really happens Christmas Eve?

#1. The creatures ARE stirring!

Mom and dad wish they could settle for a long winter’s nap on Christmas Eve.

Dad assembles a bike. Mom is wrapping gifts and cooking Christmas dinner at the same time. It’s 1:30 a.m. If mom is mechanical, she assembles the bike. But at least she reads the directions.

The ‘long winter’s nap’ lasts an hour or two if you’re lucky.

#2. The children AREN’T nestled.

The children can’t dream because they can’t sleep.

Our kids ‘dozed’ on Christmas Eve, if you can call it that.

Sometimes I sat on their bedroom floor and read Christmas stories by the hall light that peeked through the crack in the doorway (while the bike waited for assembly).

#3. Sugar plums aren’t plums.

Do you know what sugar plums are? Go ask an eight year old what they are.

I can’t remember the last time I ate a plum. And I’ve never eaten sugar covered plums in my life.

If you expect sugar plums for Christmas, you’re an idiot.

I just looked up ‘sugar plums’. They aren’t even plums! But you can buy a sugar plum essential oil on Amazon.

If you put sugar plum in your diffuser, you might actually see Santa this year.


Expectation impacts satisfaction.

  1. Ashes and soot ruin your clothes if you let them. Expect challenges and you won’t be disappointed.
  2. Expect to dedicate your life to generosity and you’ll always have a place.
  3. Expect people to be nervous around authority. Let them know they have nothing to dread. (Even when managing someone out, do it for their benefit, not just yours.)

Expect more of yourself than you expect from others.

What might leaders expect from leadership? (Good/bad)

What unrealistic expectations pollute leadership?

Note: I hate to disappoint you but this post, excluding the two above questions and this comment exceeds 300 words by 31!