Editorial—Winding Down

In this penultimate issue of the year, we’ve gathered an eclectic set of articles, which is another way of me saying that I can’t pick out any particular theme going on in the minds of the writers.  Yes, the holiday season seems to feature, but the various takes on it we have in this issue defy an easy grouping. Which, when you think about the variety in students of AU, makes a lot of sense.

The holiday season contains a lot of additional stressors and expectations on people from the norm. Whether it’s getting work prepared for the new year, the various parties and family gatherings and oh, crap, I forgot about uncle Bob, etc, the differences that come out in those situations are going to be magnified, if only because we don’t have time to allow the sharp, rough edges of our thoughts be homogenized into our usual expected roles.

The clash of the expectation that people be happy during these season with the reality of all the additional things we are also expected to do, the expectations of how we are to get along with family that we normally can’t stand, or even how it’s expected we’ll be surrounded by loved ones that many of us simply don’t have, can lead to a disconnect that, ironically, drives up unhappiness and ends up feeding into it’s own cycle of feeling like a failure to meet those expectations.  There is a reason, after all, that crisis centers see an uptick in the number of calls around the holidays.

So, to avoid that, I encourage you to retreat, if only for a few minutes, into the writings in this week’s Voice.  Whether it’s our feature Fly on the Wall, the proposes using the holidays to take up a new hobby, advice on how you might be able to deal with the emotions of lost loved ones over the season, a search for higher spirituality, some ideas for interesting gifts both for others or yourself, or just a dog-driven break from the routine, we won’t judge.

And if you just want a few minutes to forget about Christmas altogether, we’ve got you covered there as well. Whether with a look at how you might be inadvertently doing harm to your pets, a look at higher-order physics, scholarships, AU related social media, or just keeping up to date with what’s going to be closed, this week’s Voice Magazine will keep you informed.

But I hope you’ll take the opportunity to keep The Voice Magazine informed as well. That’s right, I’m still looking for your choices as to which articles we ran over the past year that you think deserve some special treatment.  What do you think were the best articles we ran last year?  Get your opinion in and I might even sweeten the deal by sending some lucky people a swag package of Voice goodies as a way to say thanks.

Then next week, we’ll be running the final issue of The Voice Magazine for 2018, take a much needed break over the holidays, and return on January 4th with our Best of 2018 edition, curated, hopefully, by you!  Not that this means I’m trying to get you guys to do my job, although I totally am, but also that I just love to see what articles you people pick. Sometimes I get votes for articles that I completely forgot about, but that really deserve it, and those are the best votes of all.  In the meantime, however, enjoy the read!