Ok, maybe I should be more clear - don't make the same old new year's resolutions that we all do to lose weight, eat better, exercise more or stop smoking. All of those are great goals and very important, of course, but I would encourage us to think as much about our MENTAL health as we do our physical health. Mental wellness and physical wellness are so intertwined that it's hard to separate them and we know that one impacts the other. So in this new year, when we are given a fresh start and while we are motivated (hopefully beyond this month!), let think about how we can ensure that we are paying attention to our mental health.
The following article excerpts are found on the Empower website and you can read the entire article here:
1. Resolve to treat yourself nicely and write out a list of 10 positive things you like about yourself and look at that list often
2. Resolve to seek help if you need it - help reduce the stigma!
3. Resolve to be physically active and mentally active every day
4. Resolve to ACT and not REACT to negative situations and people around you
5. Resolve to RELAX - at least 15 minutes a day do something that helps you feel calm and something that you enjoy
6. Resolve to put yourself before your illness - we are NOT defined by our mental or physical illnesses (don't say "I'm depressed", say instead "I HAVE depression")
7. Resolve to be mindful and present NOW - we can't change the past or control tomorrow, but we can live in the moment today
8. Resolve to be the person you want to be and know you can be - you may have seen the saying "God, please help me be the person my dog thinks I am"? Well this is like that, you have goals and aspirations and you need to take steps, no matter how tiny, to become that person.
9. Resolve to forgive yourself and others - we all have great intentions and we really do want to keep our promises and resolutions to ourselves and others but sometimes we will fail and it feels like we are going backwards and not moving ahead. That's ok - the great thing about new years is that there are also new months and new days and you can choose to "start over" any time...the calendar has no control over our making better choices!
So happy 2015 to you and remember:
"Your present circumstances don't determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start." Nido Qubein