New Year Resolution: 3 Challenges to Hit the Psychological Gym

Chelsea Crow, Female Trauma Therapist

Chelsea Crow, Female Trauma Therapist

So you want to improve your health and physical appearance this year, but what about your mental and emotional health?  Are you looking to not only look better but feel better?  I mean really feel better – in a way that reaches deeper than just pure aesthetics.  Do you want to improve your relationships, gain a stronger sense of self, learn better ways to cope with and manage the stressors of life?  Then this year make a resolution to join the psychological gym and keep up with your mental health workout. 

As you probably already know, gym memberships skyrocket in the month of January just to be broken months later.  Why is it so hard to stick to a resolution?  My personal theory is because resolutions, more often than not, are unbalanced.  Don’t get me wrong, physical exercise is necessary and not only boasts great health benefits, but also assists mental and emotional functioning as well.  Going to the gym to further your personal health is a great idea.  But just as our body is wired for exercise, so is our mind. 

Here is what I propose to you as you prepare to make your 2017 resolutions:

1.       Consider how you can improve all aspects of yourself, not just the physical ones.  I do understand the physical aspects may be the easiest to focus on because they have the most tangible results, but it does not make the positive results of other areas of your life any less inferior. 

2.      I dare those of you who committed to your physical health this year to further those mental benefits that come with your workout regime and commit to some form of psychological and emotional betterment.  This can consist of investing in your own personal therapy, bettering your relationships through couples or family therapy, joining group therapy or a support group, untangling your thoughts through the tip of a pen or expressing your emotions through an artistic outlet – or maybe a combination of some or all of these things. 

3.      For the initiation of your new commitment, you might start by reflecting back on 2016 – both the good and the bad – and then looking forward at the new year ahead to navigate through your own personal goals. 

Whatever this looks like for you, I challenge you to jump in full force and commit for the year.  This may also include finding an accountability partner as you might do for your physical fitness plan.  Keep your other resolutions by committing to your psychological health today.  Don't just become physically fit, but mentally fit as well!  Let 2017 be your year for personal growth!

Chelsea Crow-Fuentes