It’s a new year, and I don’t know about you, but I feel exhausted. After giving time and energy to our children, family, and friends during the holiday season, and after nearly two years of surviving a global pandemic, many of us feel tired, spread thin, and maybe a little lost.
Here are four ways you can connect with yourself to restore your energy and feel grounded again.
1. Spend time in nature. Time spent in nature is scientifically proven to improve a person’s mental health and physical well-being. Tuning in to nature allows you to also tune in to yourself, your thoughts, and your feelings. Sit on a park bench, walk along the beach, take a hike in a regional park, or visit that botanical garden you’ve been curious about.
2. Meditate. Practicing meditation regularly has many benefits, including decreasing depression, anxiety, chronic pain, and overall stress. When we slow down to quietly reflect, we can connect to a deeper sense of self. Never meditated before? Don’t get too overwhelmed. Apps like Calm and Headspace are great for beginning meditators. If sitting still isn’t your style, try beginner yoga or tai chi as a movement meditation.
3. Journal. Journaling can help you to relax, organize your thoughts and increase self-awareness. By expressing your thoughts and feelings through writing, you can process the difficult events of your life and while also connecting you to your hopes and dreams. You can use a classic paper journal, or get creative by typing your thoughts or incorporating audio recording by using journaling apps like Day One and Diarium.
4. Reconnect with an old hobby. Think back to some of your favorite activities as a child. Did you play a sport, create art, or practice a musical instrument? Maybe you enjoyed cooking or baking, or you took dance lessons. Reconnecting with a childhood hobby will instill creativity and playback into your life, reconnecting you to your inner child and your authentic self. As an added bonus, nurturing hobbies is also a great way to make friends and connect with others.
I hope one or more of these suggestions inspires you to set aside time to reconnect with yourself this New Year. After everything we have all been through, you deserve to take this time to care for yourself. I hope you explore, restore, and maybe even have some fun.