Make More Merry This Holiday Season! 2 Guidelines to Make the Holidays Easier and Less Stressful

Welcome to November, my dear readers! The holiday season here in the US officially kicked off yesterday with Halloween and now we’re off for another holiday season! There is so much joy to be had celebrating the holidays with family, friends, and food. Between Halloween, Dia de los Muertos, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Diwali, Hanukkah, New Year’s and several more, there is a LOT going on! And, if you’re not careful, it’s easy to get swept up into everything, stressed out, burned out, and desperately counting the days to January 1 when you can start recovering. Just like with everything else in life, getting through the holidays is a skill that anyone can acquire – it just takes some practice. There are 2 main tricks I’ve learned that make everything go much easier:

  1. Guard your mental health
  2. Plan ahead

If this is your first year planning ahead, then good for you for getting started! This year might be a bit rocky as you figure it out, but it gets easier every year. I can’t promise that your holidays will be stress-free (because I don’t think that’s possible), but hopefully by sticking to these 2 tricks, your holiday season will go much smoother.  Continue reading

Getting A Cold? A Few Simple Steps Can Make All The Difference In Getting Healthy Again

Cold season is upon us with full force! It sucks getting sick and I have definitely spent my fair share of time getting sick and staying sick. In fact, I spent this entire past weekend and half of this week sick with the worst sore throat I’ve had in a long time. It was no fun being stuck in bed or on the couch feeling miserable, particularly because I missed my husband’s birthday! While it sucked missing his birthday, I am recovering faster than I ever have before (read: it used to take me up to 4 weeks to get over a cold when it should take about 1 week). It took me way too many years learning how to deal with colds, so please learn from my mistakes and read the following advice on staying and getting healthy from a cold.  Continue reading

Self-Improvement Isn’t Going Anywhere – It’s OK to Take a Break When You Feel Overwhelmed

Do you ever feel overwhelmed by how much self-improvement information is out there? There’s tons of advice constantly barraging us with how to be better at everything – how to be fitter, how to be a better parent, how to negotiate better, how to give back more, how to be more productive, how to go faster, how to go bigger, how to, how to, how to. There are books that can teach you how to improve yourself. There are courses and websites and lectures and conferences. There is so much information out there that information overload is a real thing.  Continue reading

It’s the Little Things…That’s Mint! (Or, Finding Hard-to-See Silver Linings in Clouds)

In my last post, I discussed a sensitive subject that I have never discussed outside of 1 or 2 conversations with my husband, 2 therapists, and 2-3 close friends. As you might imagine, I was extremely nervous about how it would be received. You, my wonderful readers, were very receptive and non-judgemental, which is appreciated more than you will ever know. Thank you.

Optimism is my general outlook on life, despite going through depression a few times. Depression has, somewhat surprisingly, reinforced my drive to be optimistic because I know how tentative my daily happiness can be. One way that I strive to be optimistic is to always look for the bright side or look for silver linings. It’s not always easy though, as Don Marquis eloquently put it:

every cloud
has its silver
lining but it is
sometimes a little
difficult to get it to
the mint  Continue reading

It’s the Big Things…Suicide Prevention

Please note, this post discusses a sensitive topic. If you are sensitive to discussing suicide or depression, please take this week off from reading Any Little Way and rejoin us next week. Additionally, this post is NOT advice for someone who is currently going through depression and/or thinking about suicide. This post is for people to connect better and encourage one another, regardless of whether or not they know someone going through depression. If you are slogging through depression or thinking about suicide, please know that you are a beautiful person, no matter what you may think about yourself and to please just keep going one more day and then one more day and then one more day. Never give up. And particularly, GET. HELP. if you need it. In the United States, you can call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273 TALK (8255) or you can text NAMI to 741-741 to be connected to a free, trained crisis counselor on the Crisis Text Line.

September is Suicide Prevention Month, which is very important. Many of us have a connection to suicide, given that 41,000 people commit suicide every year. This number tends to increase after high publicized suicides, such as after Anthony Bourdain’s and Kate Spade’s deaths this past summer. Their deaths were highlighted even more because this CDC report came out in a gruesome coincidence almost immediately afterward, pointing out how suicide is on the rise. Sadly it seems, more and more of us come face to face with the sadness and loss of a suicide and that’s one of the reasons why it’s important to focus on awareness all year long – and not just after the fact.  Continue reading