Life can be broken down into many chapters, and 2020 is the perfect opportunity to start a brand new one. But let’s shake things up a bit and take the focus off resolutions. After all, studies show that less than 10 percent of those who make resolutions manage to stick them for more than a few months. Instead, let’s think about how different ways we can improve our day-to-day circumstances and the steps we can take to get there.
Because we help families throughout Binghamton and Endicott during very difficult times, the team at Allen Memorial Home has a unique perspective on life. Our work in the funeral industry – really, we consider it a calling – gives us the ability to see the “big picture,” and this is a point of view that serves us well. We’ve gathered our favorite life improvement tips that have made a difference to us. We hope you find them just as useful as we do.
- Find a way to get outside. We love the Endicott area. We really do. Most of our staff grew up here and can’t imagine living anywhere else. That said, the long months of frigid temperatures, icy sidewalks, and early sunsets can take a toll. This is why we make it a point to head outside every day during winter – even for just a few minutes at a time – to let the dog out, walk around the block, or shovel the driveway. The natural sunlight, fresh air, and exercise have countless benefits, and make bundling up worth it.
- Give your brain a break. We know our bodies need rest, but it’s easy to forget that our brains do too. Consider “unplugging” from technology more often. We find it’s almost automatic to reach for our phones when we’re standing in line, sitting at a stoplight, or heading to bed. Instead, try setting your phone aside, closing your laptop, and giving yourself time away from all screens. Your body and brain will thank you for it.
- Evaluate your social circle. Are you surrounded most days by people who smile, have a positive attitude, and encourage you? Or are your friends, family, and co-workers grumpy and negative? Surely you can see how those around you impact your mood for better or worse. If your social circle is supportive and leaves you feeling good about yourself, great. If not, what steps can you take to create healthier connections with others?
- Start each day with gratitude. It’s almost mind-bogglingly (yes, that’s a word) simple – yet so many of us don’t ever stop and do it: Research shows that thinking about – and especially writing down – what we’re thankful for helps us sleep better, express more compassion and kindness, and even have stronger immune systems. You can start right now by thinking of three specific things you’re thankful for. Do the same when you wake up tomorrow morning, and the day after. Before you know it, you’ll develop a habit of thanksgiving.
- Plan ahead to alleviate stress. We’re all winding down from the hubbub of the holidays, and this is the perfect time to take a look at your future. We meet with families every day who talk about how a few minutes of preplanning their arrangements goes a long way toward protecting their loved ones from worry and uncertainty in the future. Contact us any time to begin learning about the benefits of preplanning. You’ll be amazed how putting these details on paper affects your outlook.
As you take a look at 2020, what changes do you want to make that will lead to a healthy, happy year? As always, our caring team is here to help you in whatever way we can. We hope these next 12 months are filled with happiness and peace for you and your loved ones.