January is a fresh start. New beginnings can feel excellent but a little overwhelming, too. The holidays have gone, the year ahead looks busy, and perhaps you need some extra coffee to help you get up and go.
If you’re looking for ways to make the first month of a hectic new year a little more relaxed, we can help. Check out these quick thoughts on how to enjoy your January.
1. Be Mindful
The APA (American Psychological Association) tells us that mindfulness is acknowledging all that’s going on inside your mind and body and what’s happening around you. It’s paying attention to the feelings (good and negative), the sights, the sounds, and the thoughts you’re having. It’s like stopping to take a minute to be present.
With cell phones and constant distractions, being present in the moment can take some practice. Find a quiet space and allow yourself some time to calm your mind. When you do, take some inventory of your surroundings and feelings.
When we stop and take a minute to evaluate how we’re feeling and what we’re thinking before we do something, we can develop a better sense of control over our responses to ourselves and others. That little pause can do wonders—maybe even help you to choose the best possible words before that first cup of coffee has taken effect!
2. Be Grateful
January is cold. It’s usually gray. You might be dreading leaving your warm bed to tackle the day. Negative thoughts might flood into your head. But what if, just for a moment, you paused your thought process (because you’re being mindful, remember)?
Before your mind fills up with the ickiness that winter can bring, think of everything around you that you’re grateful to have. If it’s cold, this can be as simple as acknowledging the home you’re standing in, the warm stockings on your feet, or a blanket you’re snuggling to stay toasty. Some folks are not fortunate enough to have these things. Feel gratitude that you have what you need to be warm today, and keep that momentum moving!
Continue thinking about all the beautiful parts of your life. Think about the people you’re grateful to have. Consider all the wonderful opportunities you’ve been given. Write them down if it’s helpful. Practice this as often as possible, especially if you’re feeling grouchy. The more good you notice, the better you may feel.
This works the opposite way, too. The more negative things you think, the more they can sneak into your mind and make your day poor. If you choose wisely at the start of each day, perhaps you’ll have a better one!
3. Be Gracious
Grace is allowing yourself and others to be imperfect. In a world that values perfection, it’s important to remember that none of us can be 100% the best mom, teacher, dieter, or driver all day, every day. We all make mistakes, and this is ok. What matters is that we all keep trying our best.
Cut yourself some slack and try to do the same for others. Try not to feel frustrated for long when something or someone bugs you. Use grace to move past it for your peace of mind. By remembering that we’re all just trying to get by, you might find more joy in your day.
If you’re interested in helping our residents find as much joy in their day as possible, consider applying with us at Edgewood. We have more than 60 locations to choose from, many great jobs waiting, and we happen to have the best residents on Earth! We have no doubts that your January with the residents of Edgewood will give you all the joy you need. Check us out at www.edgewoodhealthcare.com to learn more.