Well, this year was a doosey for most of us! And I think there are plenty of us that can’t wait for Ryan Seacrest or Carson Daily to just drop the doggone ball already and get on to 2021!!!
2020 gave us a world-wide pandemic, devastating social unrest, a contentious presidential election, massive unemployment, and a busier than ever hurricane season.
In case anyone wasn’t clear on how bad 2020 has been, Time Magazine named 2020 the Worst Year Ever!
We did not have any training for this year, that is for sure!!! And many of us were not prepared. It had an impact, to say the least. We are more stressed, more depressed, more unemployed, and more hopeless than we’ve been in several generations. Many of us have lost jobs during this pandemic and for those of us who have kept our jobs (even though I know we are grateful) it has impacted us as well!
I hope I haven’t thoroughly depressed you because there are a lot of things you can do to Get Ready for 2021!
I would like to take you through Five Considerations to boost your Well-Being during 2021 and ask yourself if you are thriving in these area. I love creating acronyms because it helps me remember. The acronym I am using today is CLANG! I think this is an appropriate way to bring in 2021. A clang is a loud resonant metallic sound or series of sounds. I’m picturing ringing bells when the clock strikes midnight this Thursday! The definition sentence I read said, ‘the steel door slammed shut with a clang.’ I think many of us would like to slam shut 2020, right??? So let’s welcome in 2021 with a clang and slam the door shut on 2020 with a clang as well!
Strong relationships with others is a critical part of building resilience and boosting well-being. CONNECTING with others including family, friends, colleagues, and the wider community promotes well-being, and helps build a support network for when times get tough. And times have been tough this year!!!
We all need to feel close to other people and feel valued by them. We have had more opportunity to connect with the people we live with from my conversations, that has had a variety of results—some have grown much closer to the people they live with and others, not so much. At work, having good relationships with colleagues helps us stay motivated and engaged.
Connecting is about being there for others, talking and listening, and feeling a sense of belonging.
Here are some ways that you can connect:
This is a great time to embrace new experiences, look for and seize opportunities, and maybe even surprise yourself a little bit! Being curious and seeking out new experiences keeps the brain stimulated.
Setting goals, being open to new ideas and continuing to LEARN throughout life helps boost well-being and build resilience.
Learning improves our self-esteem, keeps us connected and involved and helps us adapt to change and find meaning in our lives. It has also been shown to help prevent depression in later years.
Learning is more than just formal education – it’s about exploring new ideas, seeing opportunities, embracing new experiences and sharpening our skills. It means being curious and having an enquiring mind, in all areas of life.
I’ve gotten FIVE new certifications since June!
Here are a few ideas to keep Learning:
Being physically active every day is great for our bodies as well as our minds.
Not only does being active improve our physical health and fitness, being active also improves our mood and overall mental wellbeing, decreases stress, depression, and anxiety. These benefits are increased even more when we can get outside. Also, if we are being active with others (which we can still do during this pandemic as long as we are practicing the CDC recommendations) it helps us feel more connected and can motivate us to build an exercise habit.
Being active does not necessarily mean a five mile run (although for you those of you who do that—I’m completely envious!) A simple rule—do what you can and enjoy what you do! It may be as simple as standing more or walking around the house more…create habits that bring more movement in your work day.
Here are some ideas to help you Be Active:
Paying more attention to the present moment, to thoughts and feelings and to the world around us boosts well-being.
Using attention to increase awareness, concentration, and focus on the current moment has been shown to improve well-being and your mood. These are skills that can boost our creativity, productivity, and accuracy.
Becoming more aware of the present moment means noticing the sights, smells, sounds, tastes and touch of what we are experiencing, as well as the thoughts and feelings that occur form one moment to the next. It’s about reconnecting with the world around us. Appreciating the little things and savoring the moment.
Here are some suggestions for upping your noticing game:
We define Mindfulness at WHEN as the moment-to-moment awareness of thoughts, feelings, and body sensations without judgment. It’s about being in tune with yourself and the environment with acceptance and curiosity. The goal is not to rid yourself of all negativity or anxiety, but to become aware without judgment or attachment to it. It is an attitude of befriending yourself and the life you live. Often, people who practice mindful awareness are less reactive, less judgmental, and more self-aware.
Here are some of the other benefits of mindfulness:
Does anyone want any of this? I know I do!!!
Giving makes us feel good! Practicing acts of kindness, big or small, increases happiness, life satisfaction and gives us a sense of well-being.
Giving is more than just sharing material things with others. It’s about growing a spirit of generosity and actively supporting others.
The acts of giving, receiving and being aware of acts of kindness, even indirectly, gives us a sense of purpose and self-worth.
Giving also helps with our connections.
Here are some examples for giving:
2020 is going to go into the record books for many reasons. Are you ready to CLANG the door shut on 2020? Use the next few days to get excited about this New Year. Remember, your well-being is up to you.
Cheers everyone to a wonderful 2021!!!
WHEN Career Chief and Training Officer