"Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn't come from a store." -- Dr. Seuss

How to be Smarter: To help motivate me to move through my to-do list, I write a super-short note that reminds me how easy it will be or why I'm doing the task next to each task that seems hard or boring. So instead of "Fix Chapter 9" I write "Update Chapter 9 - 15 minutes and it will look a lot better", "Do laundry" becomes "Do laundry so you're ready for holiday party!", etc. It's a small change that helps a lot when trying to power through long lists. How to be Prettier: SP&A Exclusive Discount Code: With the promo code SPA20, SP&A readers can get 20% off your entire order at Misfit Dynamo, a shop that sells beautiful handmade pottery that is inspired by photography, music, literature, and more. There’s a ton of beautiful pieces in the shop, but my favorites are the Stegosaurus Graffiti Mug, the colorful Tea Bag Rests, and this beautiful Speckled Blue Bowl. You can also follow the shop's work on Instagram, here. Enjoy! [Expires 2/28/2017].

How to be (less) Awkward: "Offer to freshen a cocktail or get someone you’re speaking with a glass of water. You don’t have to be the hostess to refill someone’s drink or get him a small plate of food when you go up to the cheese board." This and other ways to find common ground with strangers (even if the strangers are just family you don't see very often).