I can’t believe I am actually writing a piece on Christmas, and using “terms” like surviving and stress as action words to describe it’s potential negativity. Somewhere along the way, and that is not “jingle all the way”, the jovial guy in the red suit and white ZZ Top beard, along with the real meaning behind Christmas, a baby born in a manger who came to save the world… got lost. Now, too many people look at the holiday season as being a dark abyss and they need to be “saved” from the holidays. Ah, tis the season!

I have been doing a series of radio shows lately discussing the stresses of the Christmas season, and not only surviving it, but engaging in preventative measures to not do anything absurd, reckless and dare I see even illegal! After finishing my latest interview, I actually thought you could do an entire song on the Twelve Days of Christmas and how/why not to do anything stupid. Apparently, after doing these interviews and talking to many people about the season (many at the malls– both store clerks and customers), I found that this time of year really does bring out the worst in some people. Talk about Christmas cheer!

Needless to say, since I have been discussing “how to survive the holiday season” on radio shows, I decided to put together a series of blogs entitled, “Surviving The 12 Days Of The Holiday Season!”. Apparently, I smile a lot, get excited about the Christmas season and act like a kid. I don’t know if I should be flattered by these sentiments, or what? I don’t tell the folks in the radio and TV business my little secret–I act like a kid all of the time! That said, with the Christmas season fast upon us as well as; snow, sleet, freezing rain, slush, regular rain and those in the warm clients that have the sun adding to their merriment, I offer you some friendly advice, after all, tis season…


Chocolate for which led to happy thoughts! When I am discussing “happy thoughts”, I mean that you are trying really hard to get into the festive spirit by enjoying the Yuletide season. Yuletide is German by the way, so you can call it Yule time season if you wish–meaning a festive season. And festive after all means “happy times”, big smiles, excitement…sweets! Since many Germans enjoy the Yuletide season by celebrating it using Advent Houses (Google Advent House Chocolate Calendar) and get to open a door or window each day thus getting rewarded for their efforts with a fresh piece of chocolate, they might be onto something–Chocolate. I don’t know about you, but eating chocolate makes me feel really good! Oh baby, it makes me feel extra special and totally alive!

The famous behaviourist Pavlov used dog food and a bell to create conditioned responses in dogs where he rang the bell and showed dogs food. After a while, the dogs associated the bell with food and salivated uncontrollably, as they came running when they heard the bell. A positive conditioned response was born!

So, let chocolate save your holiday season! Get yourself an Advent house, or make one by shoving Hersey kisses behind cardboard panels! Be extra creative…shove an entire Snickers bar behind each panel, heck it worked for Joe Pesci in the TV commercial. And don’t forget to look at pictures of the holiday season when eating your chocolate. The idea is to create the conditioned response, Christmas and chocolate = happiness! Warning: when going shopping for Christmas gifts, avoid chocolate stores. The goal is not to get you and everyone addicted to chocolate, just moving in the right direction toward a “festive mood”.  We will discuss eggnog at a later date!