An Early New Year’s Resolution: Taking Care of YOU in 2021


I’ve had my moments over the last few months when I was simply not okay. And that’s okay, because this year has been really, really hard. Taking care of myself has gone out the window.     

And with all the craziness, it feels like there’s never a quiet moment to just stop and breathe. In fact, things often feel so hectic, that I never even have time to notice that I’m not stopping and breathing! 

Between the kids and the one million responsibilities that need to happen first, I had let myself take a back seat to everything else. And I knew something needed to change. 

I’m not an expert on mental health (I leave that to the professionals!), but as I’ve gotten older I’ve figured out how to keep myself balanced and feeling sane. I know what works for me and what doesn’t. 

The challenge is to make sure that I’m actually making the time to do those things. 

I need to remember that I’m important, too. This has become my early New Year’s resolution and also my reminder to anyone else who might need it. Don’t forget to take care of YOU. Taking care of you in 2021 needs to be at the top of your list!

taking care of you in 2020Here are some of my simple recommendations for taking care of you in 2021. 

Get Outside 

There’s just something about fresh air, even during the Seacoast’s colder months, that makes me feel like a more relaxed person. Bundle up and take your kids and dog for a walk, rake leaves (or shovel snow, depending on what’s in store for us in December ), or go for a hike. Being outside is an easy way to feel good and do something great for YOU. 

Catch Up With a Close Friend

You know that friend who you can say anything to and they love you no matter what? Contact that person and set up a zoom date ASAP. Or, if they live close by, figure out a time to safely catch up in person. I’m not talking about something elaborate, no need for fancy table settings or complicated snacks. Just grab a mask, your choice of beverage, and get chatting.

(Excuse me while I text my bestie from Chicago right now.)

Move Your Body

I used to be a pretty dedicated runner. Never fast or competitive, but slow and steady and consistent. Running was the perfect way to clear my head and enjoy some alone time. Enter 2020 and I can’t tell you the last time I laced up my running shoes. 

Not anymore! Even if I have to force myself out the door – running will be happening going forward. However you like to get moving and get your blood pumping, don’t forget to make it happen. 

Lend a Helping Hand

I love, love volunteering. It’s something that truly makes me happy, but also something I sadly haven’t been able to make time for this year. That changes right now. 

Bonus – get your kids involved. This post has tons of great ideas for volunteering as a family.

Enjoy Favorite Activities 

Do you love taking long bubble baths with delicious smelling candles and a good book? Then do it! 

Do you live to take a long bike ride along the ocean? Join a club and go for it!

Do you need to watch a Hallmark movie every now and then? What are you waiting for? Tonight’s the night!

I will not be letting my favorite hobbies take a backseat any longer this coming year. I’m vowing to carve out time for each of them, even if it’s only in thirty minute increments here and there.

Help me out, Mamas! I would love additional ideas. How are you taking care of you in 2021?

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I’m a Maine native and after a long stretch of time living in Chicago, I feel lucky to again call the Seacoast my home. I currently live in Kennebunk with my husband, two sons, and a spaniel mix who truly believes he is a furry big brother to our boys. I hold a Master of Education degree from the University of Maine and as a certified English and Special Education teacher, a passion of mine has always been helping students and connecting them to reading and writing. Free time is best spent in the sunshine with family and friends, curled up with a good book, eating my husband’s incredible cooking, running the beautiful roads of the Maine and New Hampshire coastlines, or creatively writing for the kids in my life. Being a mom is the most challenging and amazing job I’ve ever had. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.