Local Lifestyle

Mountain Musings: The New Year’s challenge

As the pandemic and the war in Ukraine continue along with famine, violence, discord, hate and intolerance and other ills of mankind, the big challenge for the 2023 New Year is staying positive while the world around us isn’t necessarily being that way.

Winter often has gray, bleak days but those stretches of blue skies and sunshine bring happiness, comfort and healing to weary hearts.

The magic of Christmas is almost at an end.  Those holiday decorations will soon be tucked away in boxes and crates until next Christmas season.  The restful vacation break and time with family is replaced by the usual whirlwind grind of everyday activities.

So how do we extend those welcomed feelings of holiday well-being?  We focus on the positive, the fun in life, on whom and what we love and how we can make things better in the world around us. That world can include home, work, school, church and community.

The main thing to do to stay positive is to count your blessings.  We all have some.  Sometimes when life piles on you more things than you can handle, it’s hard to see what you have to be thankful for.  But just look around and you’ll discover that there are people who have it much worse.

Be grateful for everything that you’ve been given-family, loved ones, friends, pets, health, a home, food, clothing and a caring community in which to live.

What is it that you enjoy and love?  Make sure that you keep that close at hand in your life. Does watching a great movie make you happy?  Then by all means do it as often as you can.  Does listening to your favorite music soothe your soul and bring you joy?  Then make it a part of your daily routine.

Remember all the things that you love and include them in your life as much as you can –keeping in touch with friends and family, going for a walk, being outside, watching the birds at the feeder, reading a book, dancing, making crafts, cooking, baking, building things and more.

For that joy that we find in what we do will spread to other parts of our life and will touch other lives, too.

Positivity brings more positivity, kindness attracts more kindness, gratitude draws in more thankfulness and love breeds more love.  Pretty soon we have a wealth of positive feelings and emotions being generated that begins to overtake the negativity and fill the world with goodness.

Nature, animals and music can also be such a comfort when life gets tough.  Their beauty calms and soothes unconditionally.

We also need to take special care of ourselves and rest when we are tired, rejuvenate when we are burned out, de-stress when we are too wound up about everything and find peace in the midst of chaos.

For there will always be chaos and discord on our life’s journey.  Just as there will always be joy, love, peace and harmony, if we leave our hearts open to them.  Stay positive, loving and thankful and keep trucking.