Did you know that 80% of New Year’s resolutions don’t come to fruition? We all start the year with lofty goals, only to fall right back into old routines before the end of January. This year, we want to turn the focus away from failure by creating actionable resolutions for better mental health. Check out these mood-boosting tips from CNLD Testing & Therapy.
Get Rid of the “New Year, New You” Mentality
One of the biggest reasons why resolutions fail is that they rely on complete reinvention. You don’t need to be a new person. Small lifestyle and thinking adjustments could make a dramatic impact on your quality of life. Forget about becoming a “new you” in the new year. Let’s work on being a happier you.
Identify What You Actually Want to Achieve
Another reason people fail to achieve their goals is that they try to hit the wrong target. Take some time to get to the root of your aspirations. Do you actually want to lose weight, or do you want to feel better in the clothes that you wear? Do you want to save money each month, or do you want less financial stress?
Once you figure out the core of your goals, you can plan a way to achieve it. People often get frustrated about their resolutions because they’re not actually working toward the right goal. Thus, they aren’t achieving the results they truly want to accomplish. Think carefully about what you want to change so that your resolutions can align accordingly.
Make Each Goal Measurable, Realistic, and Attainable
A goal must be measurable to be actionable. For example, a generic goal to “lose weight” does not have a measurement for success. A goal to “lose 15 lbs.” is quantifiable, so you know when you’ve officially achieved it.
No matter what mental health resolution you set out, make sure it is both measurable and realistic. Do not set out with a goal of getting rid of depression in 2023. That’s not realistic. You could have a goal of seeing a therapist twice a month or reading one self-help book per quarter. Those are both measurable and realistic, depending on your lifestyle.
The last thing you want to do is set yourself up for failure from the start. Do not expect to change your entire personality in one year. That is not practical. Give yourself grace, and start with small changes you can turn into mood-boosting habits.
5 Actionable Resolutions to Strive for in 2023
Here are some examples of actionable mental health resolutions:
- Go to bed at the same time every night. The goal here is to establish a consistent sleep routine, which can help your mental health. Your brain uses your sleeping time to sort through memories and emotions from the day. The more consistent your routine, the better your brain can process daily stress.
- Write a short journal entry every day. Use this as an opportunity to get your thoughts from the day down on paper. Some people enjoy using a five-year journal, where every date has its own page. On January 30, 2024, you would return to write a new paragraph on the same page you wrote on January 30, 2023. It allows you to see how far you’ve come or notice seasonal patterns in your mental health.
- Take an extended break from social media. This could be 30 days, 60 days, six months, or however long you want it to be. Delete the apps from your phone and allow your brain to detox. You might be surprised by how much free time you have to achieve your goals or how much your stress is reduced by eliminating the pressure of social media.
- Get dressed for work every day, even if you work from home. Create a routine that prepares you for “work mode.” Then when you’re finished working, you can change out of those clothes and relax. If you work from home, shut your office door or find a way to put work fully out of sight for the night. Check out Work Life Balance Tips for Workaholics
- Schedule one day a month to do absolutely nothing. No work. No chores. Nothing. You may indeed do things during that day, but the key is to not put any stress on yourself. If you end up sleeping all day, that’s OK! Give your mind and body a temporary break so that you can be prepared for what’s to come.
Use the above examples for inspiration, but feel free to personalize them to fit your mental health goals. You could also try our 25 Weeks to Better Mental Health program, which offers week-by-week tips on how to conquer anxiety and depression.
Remember: Progress Isn’t Linear and Doesn’t Happen Overnight
The road to better mental health is not a straight line. There are peaks and valleys you will need to pass through, and every transition takes time. Do not get discouraged if your resolution takes longer to achieve than expected. Progress is always worth celebrating, regardless of how large or small it may be.
CNLD Testing & Therapy has a diverse staff of mental health specialists who would love to support you through your journey. Our office is located at:
CNLD Testing & Therapy
5864 Interface Dr., Ste. D
Ann Arbor, MI 48103