In this week's Weekend Reads, learn how to bounce back from your holiday overspending, which apps can help you cope with anxiety and depression, and why you'll soon be welcoming Amazon's Echo and Alexa into your life whether you want to or not.
Are you nervous about working off that holiday binge? No, not all of those pies and turkeys you ate. I'm talking about all of the money you spent that was more than the supposed holiday budget you created. Well, good news: We both know that being better with money is one of your resolutions, so now's a great time to start. Our friends at Credit Sesame have a whole host of tips that range from recognizing where you went wrong to knowing which of those store credit cards you should close first to how to fix that broken (or at least roughed up) credit score. It's the perfect way to prove that 2017 is going to be different. New year, new you!
You use your phone for literally everything. Can you use it to help battle anxiety and depression? I'm not talking about those apps where you text back and forth with a therapist. I mean IntelliCare, a suite of apps designed by researchers at Northwestern to help you deal with struggles you're having. The jury's still out on the efficacy of the apps, and while they may not be a complete replacement for seeing a professional, they do seem to be able to make day-to-day living easier for people who need some therapeutic assistance. So delete that Angry Birds app you never play anymore and try out IntelliCare. It may make your subway ride - and the rest of your day - that much better.
Did you read any articles about the recent Consumer Electronics Show? If you did, was it all about the Amazon Echo? Probably. Voice assistant Alexa was everywhere this year, and she'll really be everywhere soon: Cars, TVs, refrigerators, hairbrushes (seriously, the show had "smart" hairbrushes. And toothbrushes. And high heels. Why? Who knows.). Who would've thought the AI apocalypse would be ushered in not by Google or Apple or Microsoft or Yahoo (RIP) but the once and future bookstore Amazon. Time to get those alibis ready for when your future Echo tries to rat you out to the cops!