In this video, Fr. Mike tells us that Advent is not a penitential season. Advent is a season of devout and joyful preparation for the coming of Jesus.
He also explains the difference between happiness and joy. Joy is the sense of well being which comes from knowing that we are loved by the Father regardless of our circumstances.
The goal of Advent is not just to have a great Christmas, but to prepare for the coming of Christ. Jesus is constantly coming into our lives. Is there room for him, when he shows up? Sometimes we have to say no to other things to make space for our Lord.