As we welcome March into 2017 and look forward to a warm Spring this year, let’s be reminded of our New Year’s Resolutions that we set so many weeks ago. It’s not too late to keep them! Many resolutions have benefits, but there are some that are particularly healthy for those who are grieving. Let’s continue with part three of 7 Reasons to Make and Keep New Year’s Resolutions While Grieving.
Need some more ideas? Make sure to check out part one and two of the series to see more helpful ways to move through your grief.
Join A New Community
This resolution can take many different forms. Whether it’s joining a book club to meet some new friends, going to a grief group you’ve never been to, or finding a small group through your church or community group; connecting with people is a powerful grief buster. Simply getting out of the house is a good first step. Finding a new friend can help you remember that there are still good things in life.
Studies show that being around people who are happy, gives you an extra boost! Research on positive emotions shows that they are contagious. Positive emotions can increase your creativity, enhance your decision-making, increase your ability to take in more information, increase your resilience, and they even reverse some of the negative physiological impacts of negative emotions. Be aware that you may need some time to be in the right place for this part of the New Year’s Resolution. It’s ok for you to avoid happy people for a time, but don’t let yourself stay in that place for too long. When you’re ready, join a new community!
Learn Something New
We all have a mental list of things we’d like to try someday. Now might just be the time to try and tackle something new. Starting something new can increase your confidence, break you out of a rut and give you a grander appreciation of life. A new hobby can also be a great stress reliever. Having to focus on whatever new thing you’re learning takes your mind off of the grief and stress that are bothering you. You never know, you might have some fun while you’re learning something new too!
Not only does undertaking a new task help you on your grief journey, but it also sets your brain up to be healthier long term. Researchers tell us that one of the best things we can do to protect ourselves from certain types of dementia is by flexing our mental muscles. What more reason do you need to start something new today! If you’ve never created a bucket list, here are some ideas to get you started:
• Learn a new language (German, Spanish, French, the list is endless!)
• Learn to knit or crochet
• Learn how to change the oil on your car
• Learn how to fly a plane (or a kite!)
• Learn how to sew
• Learn how to cook
• Learn how to kayak
Remember, you don’t have to become a prodigy in whatever new skill you choose. Just have fun with the process.
Bonus! Give Your Goal a Second Chance
And a third, and fourth, even a fifth chance! Let yourself fail, get back up and try again. Whether it’s eating healthier, being kinder or learning something new, keep working towards your goals throughout the year. The blessing of time is that it’s easily broken down for us in months, weeks and days. Every day you have a chance to try again at something you can’t seem to get the handle of. The point is, never quit! Even if you never master the German language, you will learn so much and be better for it.
How are your New Year’s Resolutions shaping up so far? We would love to hear from you in the comments below or send us a message on Facebook!