How I Got to the Front of the Line on Black Friday Without Trampling the 20-Year-Olds

When I was a kid, the Friday after Thanksgiving meant a day off from school. In the 1950s and 60s, stores were just coming around to the idea of being open the day after Thanksgiving.

How things have changed.

This is serious stuff, the shopping frenzy that starts on Black Friday, ramps up even more on Cyber Monday, and continues through December. Retailers are grinning ear to ear. I saw photos of whole families camping out in front of Walmart just to be the first in the store on Black Friday.

It’s scary that the highlight of a weekend intended to give thanks has morphed into one of greed.

I’m not immune to the shopping bug. In fact, I’m more susceptible than I would like to admit. To prepare for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, I also planned my attack on the retail world. I sketched out my driving strategy, planning which stores I would hit first and which I would shop at later. And I felt the anxiety rise when I wondered if the website for my favorite online shoe store would go down because of high consumer demand.

“This is all so ridiculous,” I told myself. But the anxiety did not go away.

Then, my favorite classic-rock station played the Eagles. You know which song. This one. I laughed right out loud! Thank you, Universe.

Take it easy, take it easy
Don’t let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
Don’t even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand
And take it easy

Here’s the advice we all need for shopping this holiday season: Take it easy! This month, I plan to play this song whenever I start to feel tense, anxious, or rushed.

Once again, it’s about what we tell ourselves. No matter what our personality, driven or laid-back, here is a life lesson for all of us.

To all my beautiful women: Get your favorite tunes and sing your way through the holiday shopping season!