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From the Neighborhood Press

Looking Forward

Each year finishes with several anticipated holidays. Family, friends and communities come together to share good cheer, delicious food and exchange gifts. Beautiful decorations fill our retirement homes here in Rio Rancho. Hearts are so warm! It’s always a wonderful way to close each year’s chapter. And then comes the New Year – what will it bring to us all? There is excitement, anticipation and perhaps a little bit of question as to how each of us will fill this brand new year.

If you are the type that makes new year’s resolutions, you may be making a list of things you would like to accomplish. Common items on senior’s lists include weight loss, more physical exercise, creating book reading lists or taking an educational class. But you can also add some fun things to your resolutions this year. Try making goals for something productive, something fun and something healthy! 3 things to fill your new year. Goals shouldn’t be too difficult to achieve and should always include something to look forward to. Even if you are making life changes and giving up something enjoyable or doing something challenging, you can always include something rewarding as part of your new year’s goal.

Something productive

Growth is always a good goal to put on your list of resolutions. It’s likely you had some ideas in mind all year and just haven’t gotten to sit down and focus your time on certain aspirations you had. Many people have too many things they would like to accomplish and in the end, may not even get to any of the items on their list as it all seems too overwhelming. This new year, try narrowing your productivity goal down to just one thing – and stick with it. There will be many new years ahead to accomplish all the things you want to! But for now, prioritize a single goal for productivity. You may enjoy the challenge to be an amazing neighbor and look for ways to help others in your community grow. Do you have a hobby you could share by starting a special interest group in your 55 plus community? Or you might be thinking of a way to connect with and bring some joy and sunshine to those in assisted living or nursing home care. It’s rewarding to help others and it can also bring you quite a bit of joy as you socialize with neighbors in your retirement community!

Something healthy. This is a popular new year’s goal. Thinking of ways to stay or become more active and healthy is always on our minds. But you don’t have to make it too complicated. Next time you visit your doctor, you might ask what the single more beneficial lifestyle change might be to make for you specifically. Or, if you come up with your own goal, talk it over with your doctor first to make sure it’s a healthy option for you. For example, if better hydration is your goal, ask your doctor how many glasses of water or fluids you should drink every day. Discuss the benefits or drawbacks of caffeinated beverages or juices and how fluids other than water should factor into your drink count. Then plan to go shopping for a nice thermal mug or tumbler that can help you measure your fluid intake as well as keep your beverages cold or hot – and in a fun new color! You might also consider hunting for a new drink that you love to help you achieve your daily fluid intake goal. Freshly squeezed lemonade with a healthy sugar alternative may be great for the spring and summer, or a herbal tea with lemon juice and honey may be perfect for the remainder of the winter. Always find ways to reward yourself!

Something fun. This is the one you might actually start with! Yes, something fun can be a goal and should be part of your list! You may need an extra little incentive to achieve whatever it is that would make you feel happier this new year. It could be something you can share with others in your community, your family or just something you personally want to do this year. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to experience a hot air balloon ride in Albuquerque. Or a trip to the Alps. Start a little planner to help you accomplish your goal. Think about how to make it safe and enjoyable. Perhaps inviting a family member to accompany you would provide some extra security as well as company as you step out of your comfort zone. Do a little research and find out best time of year to visit those Alps. Watch some information videos or buy a book to help you plan better. Many senior communities have a wide range of special interest groups. Check to see if there is a group that can help get you inspired and help you in your endeavors such as a travel group. You might also need to check and make sure your suitcases and passport are ready to go!

Fill your new year with hope and fun in 2023. January is a great month to set aside for planning and deciding on your 3 goals. As the holidays fade away, there is no need for seniors to lose that excitement and wonder as we look forward to a new year!

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