Tis the season to lose the small amount of sanity we have left.
With work, kids (at home or grown), aging parents and extended family, holiday pressure is that “one more” thing that easily upsets the apple cart. This year, I’ve taken closer note of the ideas for handling holiday stress in hopes of finding useful suggestions for keeping my wits about me through the New Year.
In the interest of helping you too, I’ll keep this short.
The American Psychological Association (APA) says you should take time for yourself, volunteer, have realistic expectations, seek support and remember what’s important -- and it’s definitely not store-bought presents, elaborate decorations or gourmet food.
The idea of taking time for yourself may seem laughable in the face of 5-foot long to do lists. But it really is a good suggestion. Give yourself permission to go to the gym, take a hike or read a book. The APA says recharged batteries help you and your family keep an even keel. A break from holiday music can be nice, too.
Riding into the sunset. After 9 years playing a "conservative, self-important blowhard who opines about the news and the media," comedian Stephen Colbert signed off as host of The Colbert Report this week, notes NPR's Fresh Air. The radio show has put together a tribute to Colbert based on six interviews conducted since 2005, including one in which he explains how creating his own Political Action Committee helped bring attention to how superPacs raise money (overtly and covertly) to elect and defeat candidates. Good stuff.
Sony hack attack. There's been a lot written about the hackers who attacked Sony Studios and leaked what they say are stolen emails and other documents. But we agree with The Huffington Post, which points out one of the biggest takeaways from the drama: Why are people still saying stupid things in email? As HuffPo notes, "For the zillionth time: You have to assume that everything you write in an email, instant message, or text -- any written communication, really -- will be read by your boss and your spouse and splashed on the front page of The New York Times. Seriously. Assume that."
How to make eggnog. One of the great things about the Internet is how fast you can find recipes for almost anything. A quick search for easy eggnog recipes turned up Martha Stewart's version, which calls for a 1/2 cup of bourbon (optional), and a one-minute, step-by-step take offered on the Instructables website. Eggnog not your thing? Check out Jamie Oliver's recipe for the best hot chocolate. Enjoy!
Photo of Stephen Colbert courtesy of The Colbert Report.