The holidays bring in a time of joy, family closeness, a spirit of giving and hope for a better tomorrow. This is a time of year when dreams come true and problems seem to dissipate. It can be easy to get caught up in the commercial aspect of the holidays, but it's important to not let the holiday spirit die. Follow these tips to brighten the holiday spirit in all areas of your life.

1. Clean House

Spring cleaning is better done at this time of year. Not only will you have a clean home to display all your holiday treasures, but it's also freeing to get rid of the stuff you have held onto, that you no longer need, want or use, therefore allowing new things to enter your life. You can give your old things to those less fortunate than you in the spirit of the season, or you may choose donate to thrift stores or charities and receive documentation for the transaction and reap the benefit of a tax deduction. Either way, you are freeing your space and life of the past and moving ahead into the future with less baggage, giving to others in the process.

2. Mend Relationships

Some families have the luxury of close relationships within the family, others have tensions and frustrations that build over time, some only commune during the holidays, and others don't have any ties or connection to their families at all. What ever the case with your family, be sure to mend, as best you can, any hurts or tensions during this time. There is a holiday spirit that is very real and very present. This is a time where people open their hearts and minds in ways that is, unfortunately, normally closed off the rest of the year. Use it to heal any unseen wounds or unresolved issues with those you care about.

3. Random Acts of Kindness

Open your heart during this time. Do something nice for a stranger without any expectation of gratitude or praise. You may choose to do something anonymously or openly, large or small. It could be as simple as letting the irritated person grunting in line behind you go before you, taking care of a families meal at a restaurant settling their bill anonymously with the server, bringing toys to an orphanage or donating time or finances to a good cause. Step out of your comfort zone and do something for the people in this world that are around you, something you normally wouldn't do. Be creative, it doesn't have to be monetary means to give this season, but it must come from your heart and it must be done without any expectation for reward.

Remember, the holidays are about a lot more than just giving and receiving. This is a whole time of year where dreams come true and miracles happen. Where magic is real and life is vibrant. Use this time to help others, be part of the magic in someone's life. Look for the magic that surrounds you and you may just experience a miracle yourself.