Anyone out there feel like your life goes totally nuts during the holidays? Not like life isn’t crazy the other 11 months out of the year, but for some reason, December seems to amp up on the nuttiness factor. What with all the decorating and the cooking and the company and travel and parties and shopping for gifts and all of that on top of our daily activities with kids and work and … well … life. Whew!

I am wired up to work and work hard at whatever I choose to do. A few years ago while managing a start-up dental office (I am a former dental hygienist and dental practice management consultant—have you flossed today?) I was working 70 to 80 hours a week, not taking lunches, staying very late, coming in on days off, etc., to be sure my office grew as fast and efficiently as possible. After several weeks of this, my boss, Dr. Kay Henry of Crystal Lake, Illinois, sat me down and told me something I’ll never forget. She said, “Jennifer, I’m getting really angry with you for working so hard and never taking a break. You do not need to be everything to everyone. You can’t save the world.”

I was speechless.

I had never been told not to work so hard. What? And how can you tell me I “can’t save the world”?! I most certainly can—can’t I?

In the years since, those five words, “you can’t save the world,” have changed my outlook and actions drastically in a very good way. I have learned to take breaks and replenish myself even if just for 10 minutes. I eat lunch now. I go get my nails done. I read a magazine. I journal in the mornings, and it’s quiet and it’s all just for me.

I want to encourage you, my readers, to take some time for yourself during the holidays. Do something that brings you joy and do it just for you. What brings you joy? Spend time replenishing yourself even if only for 10 minutes here and there. Let’s all keep the nuts to something we munch on and not someplace we go during the coming weeks. And if you are looking for an excellent toasty nut recipe, check ours out, it’s delicious! We enjoyed them. I hope you do too.

God’s blessings on you and your loved ones this Christmas season, Fayette County. Sit back and enjoy our December issue.