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As 2020 comes to a close, it’s time to reflect on the lessons learned and consider our dreams and goals for the upcoming year.

The past 12 months were anything but ordinary, and as a result, it’s possible that your New Year’s resolutions look dramatically different than in years past. While you may have been motivated to run a marathon or cross destinations off your bucket list, it’s safe to say 2020 had different plans.

For better or for worse, this past year changed us — and yet, it’s undeniable that certain important truths were also brought into clear focus. 2020 has been a lesson in the fact that self-care is a priority, not a privilege. At Haven on the Lake, we believe that committing to your own wellbeing benefits you in all areas of your life, from relationships to work.

Putting On Your Own Oxygen Mask First

How many times have you felt a pang of guilt for doing something that falls under the category of “self-care”?

Whether it’s going to your favorite workout class or buying a book you’ve been dying to read instead of something for your kids, this nagging guilt (although irrational) is all too real. It’s not just parents who are affected. In our productivity-obsessed culture, it seems like there’s always something you could be doing to optimize your life at any given moment.

But as all our big plans crumbled in the face of COVID-19, we were forced to slow down and surrender with grace (or try to, at least). Suddenly, our worlds got a lot smaller, and the things we took for granted  — family, friends, good health — were no longer guaranteed. No matter your age or situation, it’s a lot to handle. Self-care enables you to be your best, strongest and healthiest self, which is the only way you can take care of your loved ones to the best of your ability.

If it’s been so long since you’ve prioritized self-care that you’ve forgotten how to, not to worry! We have some ideas…

Exercise 

Physical activity, which is known to boost your immunity, is more important now than ever before. Not only is working out essential to your sanity and your health, but your kids benefit big-time when you make fitness a priority in your life. Staying active keeps you in shape, relieves stress and boosts your mood, which makes for a better atmosphere in your home. Plus, it can give you more energy to keep up with the kiddos: Research shows that regular physical activity is better at revving energy levels than stimulant medications.

Yoga

While yoga falls under the exercise category, this mind-body practice deserves a special mention. With a focus on staying present and tapping into the power of the breath, yoga is an amazing tool for dealing with the stress and uncertainty of the times. And if you have children, your yoga practice gives them the gift of a more relaxed, clear-headed parent, one who has the energy to chase them around the yard and play with them for years to come. No matter what your New Year’s resolutions look like, yoga sets you up for success by balancing your nervous system and supporting your immune system.

Journaling

Putting pen to paper is a powerful way to release your unfiltered emotions and find your way back to balance. You can keep a pretty journal that inspires you to write regularly, or simply tear your entries to bits once you’ve let it all out. Either way, you’ll feel a refreshing clarity that helps you move forward with a recharged mindset.

Feed Your Creative Side

It’s far from frivolous to prioritize the things that bring you joy…it’s downright essential to your mental health! Expressing yourself through creativity is healing on multiple levels. You don’t have to be an “artsy” person to find a creative outlet and reap the anxiety-alleviating benefits, either. The options are endless — whether you choose to paint, scrapbook, crochet, journal, doodle or try out new DIYs on Pinterest, letting your imagination run wild works wonders for your mood. Check out the CA at home webpage for extra inspiration and fun art activities for all ages!

Nourish Yourself With Whole Foods

For many of us, extra stress is a gateway to emotional eating and unhealthy choices. The catch-22 is that we need good nutrition — and the immune boost that comes with it —more than ever. Eating a well-balanced diet of whole, nutrient-rich foods is one of the simplest and tastiest ways to give yourself a strong foundation for the New Year.

When you fuel your body with herbs, spices and ingredients that soothe stress, your health, mental state and energy levels will thank you! Plus, with all the extra time at home, there’s an opportunity to slow down and reframe cooking from a rushed chore to a pleasant and relaxed stress-relieving ritual.

See You in the New Year!

At Haven, we remain dedicated to helping you find balance as we move forward into 2021. Whether it’s online or in-person, our mind-body classes build community in a time where many of us feel isolated. Haven’s broad menu of offerings can help empower you, plus provide deep relaxation and the immune boost that comes with it.

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