FLOURISH! MEANINGFUL STEPS TO INCREASE PERSONAL RESILIENCE AND BE YOUR BEST SELF - EVEN DURING A PANDEMIC
This is an extraordinarily challenging time to be a nurse. The COVID-19 pandemic is stretching many of us to the limit and beyond, as we work overtime to treat anxious, frustrated patients while trying to come to grips with rapidly changing guidelines, supply shortages and the awareness that our own families are also at risk.
As you rang in the New Year…did you set new resolutions for this year? Or are you perhaps one of the many who have quit making resolutions as they seem to have lost their luster? How many of us have set resolutions each year in the past and by mid-February find they have all gone by the wayside? Resolutions are typically all about changing ourselves or our life - sending the message that whatever we have been doing is “not good enough”; goals that are based upon desires to change from a past perspective that we weren’t measuring up to well enough and believe we need to be better. Resolutions that aren’t kept end up setting us up for failure and create more negative self-talk and critical thinking.
While this time of year is always festive and exciting, it can also carry stress for many people. Balancing work, year-end schedules, planning holiday parties, time with family and friends, travel, making lists and checking them twice, and worrying about gifts for all can lead to an unbearable amount of stress and anxiety. To help us reduce our personal stress this season, let’s explore an inner strength we all share: that of Gratitude. Feeling a deep sense of thankfulness in life, taking the time to express thankfulness to others allows one to experience a variety of positive emotions, life satisfaction and happiness. Counting our blessings and taking a moment to be mindful of our own positive reflections adds meaning to our life and boosts our well being.
World Kindness Day is an international holiday that was formed in 1998, to promote kindness throughout the world and is observed annually on November 13th as part of the World Kindness Movement. It is observed in many countries including the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia and the U.A.E. World Kindness Day presents us with the opportunity to reflect upon one of the most important and unifying human principles. On a day devoted to the positive potential of both large and small acts of kindness, try to promote and diffuse this crucial quality that brings people of every kind together.
October is Positive Attitude Month and Emotional Wellness Month! Having a positive attitude makes any difficult or frustrating situation a lot easier to deal with. Are you a person who views scenarios from a “glass half empty” perspective? If so, it is time to change that! Looking at situations with a “glass half full” perspective is a thought process that makes a big difference. Barbara Fredrickson, in her book Positivity, identifies that the purpose of positive emotions is to broaden people’s perspectives and build their capacity to respond to challenges. Negativity narrows our focus to what threatens us; positivity expands our attention to new possibilities for building a better future. The Mayo Clinic states that a positive attitude can lower your stress level, which is good for your overall health and wellbeing!
During National Suicide Prevention Week of September 8th - 14th, individuals and organizations around the country join their voices to broadcast the message that suicide can be prevented and to reach as many people as possible with the tools and resources to support themselves and those around them. The theme of Suicide Prevention Week is Finding Purpose: Caring for Ourselves and Others. It truly takes whole communities joining together to make a difference – from individuals and families to workplaces, government agencies, and community organizations.
I recently heard someone exclaim “The Dog Days of Summer Are Over!” In my recollections, I had heard that phrase before, but it got me wondering… what exactly does it mean? So, of course, I did a bit of research and here is what I found…
To not bore you with a lot of history… The phrase, “Dog Days”, conjures up the hottest, most sultry days of summer. What and when are the Dog Days of Summer?
The “Dog Days” are based on astronomy. The Old Farmer’s Almanac lists the traditional timing of the Dog Days as the 40 days beginning July 3 and ending August 11, coinciding with the heliacal rising (at sunrise) of the Dog Star, Sirius.
Ahhh July! Known for ‘The 4th of July’, ‘Family Reunion Month’, ‘National Grilling Month’, ‘Social Wellness Month’, ‘National Ice Cream Day’, and ‘International Friendship Day’! We gather together for parades, fireworks galore, outdoor barbecues with friends and family, we may throw a vacation in the mix and we plan, enjoy and survive family reunions! And, if you have kids, you find yourself transporting them back and forth to summer camps! Phew! That’s a lot packed into one month!
Did you know the month of June is recognized for “Effective Communication Month”?
Did you also know 90% of our conversations are “controlling”?
We "TELL YELL SELL" with each other.
If you are a nurse, thank yourself and your colleagues for the compassionate care and service you provide to others!
If you know a nurse, remember to thank them for being there for you their compassion and their care!
Mental Health America (MHA) has chosen the theme this year of #4Mind4Body to raise awareness about the connection between physical health and mental health...
You've probably heard the phrase "April Showers Bring May Flowers."
But have you ever thought about what it really means?
Many believe the rhyme originated in 1557 from the writer Thomas Tusser. In his collection of writings, he called "A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry," he wrote in the April section, "Sweet April showers, do spring May flowers." There are many poems of April Showers Bring May Flowers, and each comes with a different style of writing and each has its own sweetness. Some view this expression as typically meaning, “get ready for a bounty of happiness and joy that only flower blossoms can bring.”
March 20th welcomes in the Spring Equinox and brings forth thoughts of gardening, sunshine and new beginnings! What are you looking forward to this spring? What kind of seeds do you want to plant in your garden, for you, and/or for your life? The arrival of spring is a perfect time to celebrate the new life that surrounds you in nature. Watch the sunrise and/or sunset, go for a walk in the park, go on a bike ride, take a hike or just lay in the grass. As you do so, observe all the new spring life beginning around you.
The arrival of Spring is the perfect time to practice the art of Mindfulness.
It's apparently a year to find peace, happiness and contentment in life…but how do we do that when we know (or maybe don’t realize) that deep inside we are already exhausted as we start the new year? How do we draw upon the resilience we need to experience that inner peace, happiness and contentment? Well, it all starts with self-care.
Last month we explored finding clarity in our general areas of life and setting intentions and goals we aspire to achieve for the year of 2019; now that we have done so, what steps do we need to take to ensure we keep our energy reserves up to meet those goals?
As you enter 2019, having clarity on who you want to be, how you want to interact with others, what you want, and what will bring you the greatest meaning in life will set you up for a successful year!
A fun and meaningful exercise to help bring clarity to your life is The Wheel Of Life Assessment. I am including a link for you to print out and complete a Wheel of Your Life! The 8 sections in the wheel help you identify areas of improvement in the major areas of life. Completing it offers a good opportunity for self-reflection and leads to growth.
Some guiding thoughts as you ponder the areas of your life...