By Kim von Keller & Deborah Dusseljee, RPR, CRC, CLR – Principal, South Carolina
This article was originally published on the CompuScripts, A Veritext Company, blog.
Making the Most of 2021
Remember those resolutions we made this time last year? We were going to do things like update our professional wardrobes, attend legal industry gatherings and go to the gym. With the arrival of COVID-19 in early 2020, however, those good intentions flew out the window. So as we approach 2021, perhaps we should consider different resolutions for a pandemic year.
Learn to be Resilient
The social, cultural, and economic shifts of 2020 kept many of us off-balance, testing our abilities to successfully react to challenges. People have sometimes felt mentally confused, emotionally agitated, or even physically ill. Therefore, one of the best resolutions for a pandemic year might be becoming more resilient. The American Psychological Association defines resilience as “the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or even significant sources of stress, such as family and relationship problems, serious health problems, or workplace and financial stressors.” And while some seem to be born with it, resilience can be improved through mindfulness and practice.
In the article “How to Build Your Resilience during the COVID-19 Pandemic,” Katie Hurley, LCSW, offers tips to improving resilience. First, we should maintain connections with others through video chats or virtual meetups with book clubs or other social groups. Next, we should adopt coping strategies such as deep breathing, meditation, or visualization. Finally, we should focus on our physical wellness through proper sleep, nutrition, hydration, and exercise.
Learn to be Positive
While it may seem impossible, increasing positivity may be one of the best resolutions for a pandemic year. According to KVC Health Systems, individuals with a more optimistic outlook live longer, healthier, and less stressful lives. Additionally, those with a more positive outlook tend to be more persistent in their problem-solving. The practice of positive thinking doesn’t mean putting your head in the sand in the face of difficulty though. Rather, positivity helps you face life’s challenges without being overwhelmed by fear.
In a Forbes article titled “5 Ways to Be a More Positive Person,” Frances Bridges first suggests that we surround ourselves with positive people who lift us up during difficult circumstances. Second, we should actively practice gratitude, replacing our negative thoughts with those of gratefulness. Third, we should consider doing nice things for others. Fourth, we should work on eliminating negative self-talk. And finally, we should celebrate every accomplishment — meeting a deadline, finishing a to-do list, completing a work-out — no matter how small.
Learn Something New
As we consider our resolutions for a pandemic year, finding a new hobby has many benefits. An article in the New York Times titled “How to Find a Hobby” sites research that hobbies result in better health, better sleep, lower stress, greater happiness, a stronger social network, and improved work performance.
FutureLearn, a platform offering online course learning, suggests that you first think of things we like to do. Next, you should determine your goals in choosing a new hobby. Do you want to relax? If so, learning to bake or practicing yoga might be good resolutions for a pandemic year. Coding, playing a musical instrument or speaking a new language might be attractive hobbies if you want to learn a new skill. Is fitness your goal? Give dancing, weightlifting, or roller skating a try. And if you’re interested in self-expression, learning to paint, sculpt, or write music are all excellent resolutions for a pandemic year.
About Deborah Dusseljee, RPR, CRC, CLR
After graduating from Ferris State College with a degree in Court and Conference Reporting, Deborah began her career as a court reporter in 1984.
Debbie added to her court reporter, broadcast captioner, cart provider writing proficiency skills and became one of South Carolina’s first realtime court reporters and later became South Carolina’s first realtime broadcast captioning pioneer. She has served as President of the South Carolina Shorthand Reporters Association, Editor of The Palmetto Line, South Carolina Delegate to the National Committee of State Associations, and a chief examiner for NCRA certification testing. Debbie is currently a Registered Professional Reporter, Certified LiveNote Reporter, Certified Realtime Captioner, and Realtime Systems Administrator.
During the recent pandemic, Debbie used her web-conferencing knowledge as a realtimer to mobilize her staff, professionals, and clients onto a Zoom platform for taking virtual depositions.