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Mental health experts offer tips to keep New Year’s Resolutions

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BECKLEY, W.Va. (WVVA) The pandemic isn't the only catastrophe that has taken the world by storm in the last year. Health experts say more West Virginians are experiencing mental health issues as a result of pandemic-related stressors, including the loss of jobs, virtual learning, and limited time spent with friends and family.

So for those who are resolving to have a brighter outlook in 2021, how do they do it?

According to Kristi Dumas with the Dumas Psychology Collective, they start by setting small, attainable goals.

"2021 is really about positivity. It's about looking back at the things we've learned, the things that have made us expand and widen our perspective, and we're taking those things we've learned into the New Year."

"One of the reasons New Year's resolutions break is because we make them without a lot of planning and thinking the whole plan through," she adds.

Dumas and Life Strategies Therapist Shameka Mitchell both agree there needs to be a plan of action.

"Just writing it down where you can visibly see it I think helps a lot," said Mitchell.

They said it is also important to show yourself grace when you fail. By taking it day by day, Dumas said you will be more likely to find a positive outcome in the long-run.

"As people, we're all afraid of change. We're afraid of things we can't control. The old saying goes how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. You have to find the little steps to get to the whole elephant."

Mitchell said self-comparison on social media can also be a dangerous rabbit hole that leads to setbacks.

"You're biggest competition should be yourself, not anyone else. So just stay consistent and reward yourself for making those things attainable. You can do it."

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Annie Moore

Multimedia Journalist

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