Mental Health Moment: It’s a New Year!


It’s a New Year!

How about making some resolutions that you can keep and that are great for your mental well-being? You can achieve this in three ways:

First, pick up a copy of Daniel Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence: Why it Can Matter More Than IQ. Emotional intelligence is a set of skills, including impulse control, self-motivation, empathy, and social competence in interpersonal relationships. It’s a good time to become aware of our emotional intelligence after a possibly stressful holiday season. This is our opportunity to make some changes in ourselves in order to create better family gatherings in the future.

Second, clear clutter. Research has found that chaotic surroundings make it harder to focus than an organized, tidy setting. Clutter causes our senses to work overtime on stimuli that aren’t necessary or important. It also makes us feel like there’s always work to do and creates feelings of guilt. If it’s something you use frequently, find a spot for it. If you haven’t used it or worn it in the past year, box it up and take it to a local thrift shop so someone else can enjoy it. Try Marie Kondo’s best-selling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing to get you started.

Third, practice gratitude every day. Studies show that gratitude can make you 25% happier. Think about that for a second… you can be 25% happier simply by taking the time to count your blessings and think of all the good things in your life! Being grateful will also help you to overcome adversity, improve the quality of your sleep, and allow you to get along better with others. For next year, resolve to be more grateful.

Research shows that the best way to accomplish your goals is to start by clearing the clutter: mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally. To make a lasting change in our life, we must find the energy that is causing us to be stuck in the unwanted pattern/situation in the first place and release it. We shower to wash daily dirt and grime off the outside of our bodies, but no one teaches us how to clean up on the inside. If we clear out our spiritual grime, we can create a new pathway to positive change in our mental and physical daily life.