The tradition of resolving to improve in the coming year is nothing new – in fact, it’s practically ancient! 4,000 years ago, Babylonians resolved to settle debts and right communal wrongs at the beginning of the calendar year. Today, our New Years’ goals revolve largely around self-improvement, like exercising more or improving eating habits. However, though time and culture changes, one thing about New Years’ resolutions remains the same: They’re darn hard to keep! Fortunately, the staff at Community Support Connections have some handy tips to guide you in the right direction. Here are four common resolutions – and four helpful ways you can keep them this year!

     1. Eat healthier with nutritious, homestyle meals. Eating healthy and well as we age is a resolution as tough as they come. Having the time and energy to source and purchase fresh, local ingredients, much less prepare a home-cooked meal is not a luxury all of us have. Others of us no longer find cooking an easy (or safe!) activity to do. And others without regular access to reliable transportation may struggle even getting to a grocery store. Instead of turning to processed-foods, high in sodium or sugars, try a local Meals on Wheels agency. Dedicated to offering meals that are both nutritious and delicious, their entrées (whether hot or frozen) provide all the convenience of meal delivery with all the wholesome benefits of a home-cooked meal!

     2. Exercise more often. Exercising is difficult enough when there are plenty of group classes or fair weather to enjoy. But when we are all stuck at home, especially in the winter, how does one get an effective workout? Your local community or seniors’ agency may have the answer! Some have developed excellent alternative exercise programs over the pandemic, like Community Support Connections’ free virtual exercise classes. Even if you do not have time to join in, make friends, and learn from a qualified instructor, they have produced a handy guide to some great exercises you can do from home!

     3. Make a new friend. We could all use a little more social connection in this day and age – and there are plenty amongst us who are isolated, with few family or friendly connections. Investigate what your region offers in terms of friendly matching services you can volunteer with, like Community Support Connections’ Friendly Visiting program. Whether you give them a call once a week, or visit digitally over a platform like Skype, Zoom, or Google Hangouts, you can build a meaningful and powerful connection with another person – without even leaving your home!

     4. Help your local community. Maintaining a home is full of challenges – from ensuring it remains clean, to performing repairs and maintenance, to clearing the yard in the spring – and of course, dealing with snow on your sidewalk and driveway before you collect a municipal fine! Lending a helping hand to your neighbour is a great way to build a closer, friendlier community, and do good for others – especially those who could use the help the most. See if your local area has a service like Community Support Connections’ Help at Home program – where you can become an independent brokered worker doing just that!