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New Year, New Start: simple steps to achieve your goals

Every New Year brings new hope, new ambitions and, of course, New Year’s Resolutions. But it can also be a time of worry and anguish for people with mental health issues. Making plans for the year ahead when coping with mental health conditions like depression and anxiety can feel daunting.

If the bar is set too high, failure to achieve goals could come as a big blow, causing further mental anguish. But avoiding setting any goals could be equally damaging. Having something to work towards gives people something to focus on, and can encourage them to keep going through difficult times.

This year, try one of these ideas as your New Year’s Resolution.

Small steps

It’s easy to make grandiose plans at the start of the year, only for them to be forgotten weeks later as they’re just unrealistic. Instead, set small goals for yourself that you’re more likely to be able to achieve. That could be something like making time to see more of your friends and family. Socialising and talking things over with people close to you can help people to feel better mentally.

Don’t put pressure on yourself

Very often, you are your own worst critic. Try not to put too much pressure on yourself to overcome your mental health issues. This will only result in negative feelings and disappointment in the long run. Mental health is not the same as physical health – willpower can only get you so far.

If you find you’re putting too much pressure on yourself, why not try focusing your attention elsewhere? Taking up a physical hobby like a new sport or craft will divert your attention from your inner thoughts and onto something else.

Set monthly goals

Rather than a New Year’s Resolution, why not set New Month’s Resolutions throughout the year? These short-term goals will stay fresh in your mind, and give you something to work towards throughout the year. A whole year can be a little daunting and people often lose sight of their aims because of this. Twelve resolutions in shorter time spans are easier to manage. When you look back on the year, you’ll see how far you’ve come and all you’ve accomplished.

Start therapy

Therapy is a great way to work towards overcoming your mental health problems. Our Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) service offers discrete therapy at a time and location that suits you. There’s no face-to-face meetings or travelling to therapy appointments. Our CBT service has proven effective in treating mental health issues like anxiety, depression, PTSD, and stress. Interested? Find out more about [our service](). https://uk.iesohealth.com/our-service/

Make sure you avoid setting New Year’s Resolutions like these – they can be damaging to your mental health and leave you feeling worse.

“Cure” my mental health condition

Mental health issues are many layered and complex. You can’t simply decide to get better. Setting yourself a goal like this is damaging, and could cause you to view your mental health problem as an enemy, blaming yourself for your continued condition, rather than learning to deal with it better and overcome it.

Have you set any goals for 2016? Tell us about them on our Facebook page.

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