mental health resolutions

New Year’s resolutions typically focus on physical changes: work out more, eat healthier foods, stop smoking, cut back on drinking, etc. While those efforts may lead to temporary happiness, they only extend to the surface. If you want to truly transform your life in 2018, you need to look beyond the mirror and into your core. Here are some mental health resolutions you can use to ensure true happiness in the coming year.

Take A Break From Social Media

Social media is a great tool for staying connected to distant friends and family members, but it can also hurt your self-esteem. People portray a false sense of reality on social media, and it’s easy to get caught up in that. “I’ll never be as pretty as her.” “Look how happy they are together.” “Man, I wish I were that rich…” These negative thoughts damage your mental health.

As you move forward with this year, restrict the time you spend on social media. Only check your accounts once or twice a day, after you’ve finished work and before you go out with friends. If you’re interacting with people in person, put your phone away and ignore social media until you get back home. This will allow you to make the most of your memories and leave each moment to the fullest.

Expand Your Support System

Having a solid support system is a great way to improve your mental health. If you do not have many friends or family members in the area, there are plenty of ways to expand your support system for the coming year. You could join a group counseling program for people who have similar experiences, like the women’s and men’s recovery groups we provide here at Heron Ridge Associates in Michigan. You could also start a new hobby where you can meet people with common interests. Focus on in-person connections to get the strongest support possible.

Eliminate Toxic People From Your Life

Removing toxic people from your life is just as important as adding supportive ones. If you have a friend who constantly belittles you or makes you question your self-worth, that stress creates just as much “weight” as fast food and addiction. You do not have to cut this person off completely, but you should work on distancing yourself from him or her. You deserve to be happy, and you should surround yourself with people who make you feel that way.

Get More Sleep

Sleep deprivation can make you feel depressed, irritable, groggy, lethargic, and confused. As you sleep, your mind sorts out all of the experiences and emotions you had during the day. If you don’t get enough sleep, your brain cannot process these events successfully. Combine this with a lack of energy, and you have a recipe for disaster. In 2018, work on getting a better quality of sleep each night, and extend your sleeping hours as long as possible.

Find Closure For Harbored Emotions

If you’re still holding on to anger or sadness from previous years, now is the time to let go. You cannot get a fresh start if part of you is living in the past. Yes, your past will always have an impact on your life, but it should not stop you from enjoying the present and looking forward to the future. Find a clear-cut resolution for any unresolved issues so you can clear a path for positive mental health.

Don’t Be Afraid To Get Help

Getting help is not a sign of weakness. It shows that you want to work through your personal obstacles in a proven, effective way. At Heron Ridge Associates, we have over 50 mental health specialists to assist you with depression, substance abuse, eating disorder treatment, couples counseling, grief recovery, and much more. Contact one of our counseling centers in Southeast Michigan to learn more about our programs, and obtain the assistance you need to conquer 2018 with confidence.

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