Stop and smell the roses!

This is a busy time of year, between holiday gatherings, final exams and time off from school, overtime hours for busy workers, shopping, and travel. It is a lot to fit into the last month of an already challenging year! So during this time, it is important to take that time for yourself, to hit the pause button. Remember that during this season it is not supposed to be about stress but about sharing quality time with the people you care about.

Sounds good! But how do we accomplish this, with to-do lists that seem to be miles long? It is important to remember that one of the priorities right now is for you to enjoy yourself, and enjoy the season of giving and sharing. Look at your to-do list and add time for yourself. Be intentional about it, as much as you would for the other things on your list – even taking 10-20 minutes to rejuvenate will go a long way.

Focusing on your own Wellness

When we think about overall wellness, often people just think about physical well-being. There are actually multiple dimensions of wellness, with a general consensus in the field that there are 8 dimensions of wellness. For today, let’s look at each of those area briefly.

Intellectual Wellness: Ways to expand knowledge and skills.

Career Wellness: Ways to find satisfaction in your work.

Physical: Ways to take care of your physical health.

Social: Ways to stay connected with social supports.

Existential/Spiritual: Ways to expand your purpose and meaning.

Emotional: Ways to cope effectively.

Environmental: Surrounding yourself in a clean, pleasant and healthy environment.

Financial: Ways to feel satisfied with your finances both now and in planning for the future.

It is challenging to look at all these areas and consider how to improve your overall wellness, especially during this busy time of year. Instead, maybe pick one area to focus on for the rest of this month, something that will help you with creating some balance for yourself to help you maintain your energy enough to enjoy yourself and your loved ones.

Stay tuned! Over the next 8 weeks we will spend some time with tips for improving wellness in each of the 8 areas listed above. Meanwhile, remember to gift yourself with some balance, right now, and into the new year.

Tip of the Week: Time for you

Kaarin Anderson Ryan, PhD 9.13.21

When we think about time, often one of our thoughts is that there is never enough time in a day to do everything you want to do. One way to give yourself a gift of extra time is to wake up 15-20 minutes earlier than usual and use that time for something you enjoy. Have a relaxing cup of coffee (not in your car on the way to work), go for a walk, meditate, do some stretches. There are a huge number of things you can do for yourself with just a little extra time in the morning to get your day off to a perfect start!

Time for …

Photo by Krivec Ales on Pexels.com

Kaarin Anderson Ryan, PhD. 8.30.21

It is a time of transition for so many of us. It’s the end of summer and for many people this signals a start to a new school year. For a lot of people, it is a time of lifted restrictions and resuming more normal social activities. For other people, it is time to go back to restricted activities because of new outbreaks and variants. As we look at out own transitions this September, think about taking time for what is important to you and your family, no matter what else is going on in the world.

So, what fun activities is it time for in your life this month? Will you go apple picking with your kids? Will you read a good book? How about meeting a friend for coffee on a Saturday morning? Starting a new month and a new season is a good time to make a list of what you hope to make time for this month in the way of activities and events.

What goals can you set for your family this month? With a new season, it may be time for looking at your responsibilities and how you will handle any changes that are coming with autumn. Sending kids back to school is one of the big transitions people are thinking abut right now. Teachers, professors, academic professionals everywhere are gearing up for an unpredictable year. Students of all ages are jumping back into school with continued covid-related issues affecting their experiences. Parents of students are faced now with helping their kids navigate unpredictable waters with school while they themselves work on coping with ever-changing circumstances in the world. For everyone who is looking at changes in schedules and responsibilities this fall, this is a good time to take stock of what will be new and different for you in the coming months and make some plans on how to tackle these changes.

Is it time for anything else as you head into a new season? Maybe you have been thinking about some personal goals, like improving your health habits. Maybe it’s a good time to take on daily meditations and mindfulness practices to build your overall wellness. With the weather cooling off a bit, maybe this is a good time to think about spending more time outdoors in comfortable temperatures.

It is always time for something – work, activities, family, relaxation. Take a few minutes to think about how to frame the next few months, making time for what is important to you.