Reframing the New Year
Who needs New Year's resolutions? I'm not good at keeping them. However, I do like to reflect on the year just past and try to adjust my attitude in more positive ways--around work life, home life, organizing (thoughts as well as things) and eating/wellness.
Lindsey Pollack raised my awareness with The Remix (Harper Business, $29.99): for the first time, we have at least four generations working side-by-side. Not-yet-retired "Traditionalists" (born 1928-1945) may well be working alongside Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964), Millennials (born 1981-1996), plus members of Gen X (born 1965-1980) and Gen Z (born 1997-TBD). Pollack describes the traits (and birth ranges) of each in a handy chart, and explains how the acronym COPE (Create Once Publish Everywhere) encourages the spread of ideas in the preferred communication style of each. "Key takeaways" close each chapter.
Elizabeth Emens's Life Admin (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $26) taught me there's a name for all the "stuff" we do outside of work. Why is it one half of a couple ends up with car repair or child care--and it doesn't matter of it's male-female, female-female, or male-male (or they-they). A task generally "sticks," unless we become conscious of it and make changes. "Refreshers," quizzes and "ideas to try" will help you break patterns and create new ones.
Maybe you'd like to have more sit-down family dinners or introduce some new recipes to friends. Nothing Fancy (Clarkson Potter, $32.50) invites you into Alison Roman's secrets: "Roasting a nice chicken for people is such a good way to say, 'I love you' "--which, she confides, she discovered scrawled on the back of her unpaid electric bill. (And then she includes the roast chicken recipe!) Mouth-watering photographs show cooking in progress... and meals served on paper plates.
Here's to can-do attitudes in 2020! --Jennifer M. Brown, senior editor, Shelf Awareness