The New Year brings new hope, goals and renewal.
It's also a good time to check in with yourself and
see if you are projecting to the world the person
you want to be.
By changing your attitude you can bring more
positive energy to into your life. And, your positive
outlook can benefit those around you.
You'll find some attitude
changing suggestions in this month's SANITY
Make a "New" New Year's Resolution - Change
Attitude. And while your rethinking those old
attitudes, how about considering your view about
people who have disability differences? How can you
be supportive? See TIPS on
Changing our Views about Those Who Have
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Wishing you health, peace and
Make a "New" New Year's Resolution
Change Your Attitude
The Same Ole’ New Year’s Resolution
New Year's Resolutions are often about committing to
an exercise program, losing those extra 20 lbs, or
stopping smoking. While all of these are likely be
terrific for your health, are usually begun with great
promise and enthusiasm, and are made with the hope
that your life will be better, funny thing is that often
our New Year's resolutions from one year to the
are exactly the same.
A “New” New Year’s Resolution
How about making this year the year of a different
kind of resolution? Changing our attitude about
something or someone (including ourselves) can be a
refreshing start to the New Year. So often our
attitudes remain unchanged and unchallenged; we
never question whether they still serve us well or
if they restrict us, holding us back.
Attitude Adjustment can Enhance our Lives
How many times have your own or other people's
opinions prevented you from doing or trying
something? “I always wanted to go skydiving but
my friends will think I’m crazy.” “I would like to take
an art class but I can't draw.” “I would like to learn
to play the piano but I was never very good at it
when I was a kid.” “I would like to travel but I don' t
have a companion.” “I would like to dance
don't have a partner.”
By changing our attitude we can try things we
thought we were "unable" to do and have
experiences that will open our minds to incredible
possibilities. Here are some Sanity Savers to help you
get started to change your attitude.
- No Challenge. No Change. - If you don't
yourself a challenge there can be no change and
without change there is no growth. Ask
yourself, “How can I be continually challenged?”
- Meet People Who are Different from You -
Step out and don't limit yourself to your usual group
(age, culture, race). Find those with similar
interests but who are from different
backgrounds. Meet and be with people who are both
younger and older than you. Learn from their
- You Are Never Too Old or Too Young to
Change Your Self Image - Daily events
influence your ability to stay focused, adaptable,
happy and positive. The stronger and more resilient
your sense of self, the better equipped you are to
deal with all of what life presents.
- Be Aware of Your Patterns - When we
don’t notice our patterns we get in our own way.
How can we possibly move forward in life if we are
bound by behavior or images that elude us?
- Be Conscious and Present –By being fully
aware, we can accept, reject or change that which
we don’t want into something that can be helpful
- Be Eager for Personal Growth - Seek
knowledge, adventure and friendship. Do not confine
yourself to a familiar road, traveling along paths
others have gone or mapped out for you. Leave the
path from time to time. Be adventurous. Find your
element; never stop searching. Continue your quest
life. It is all about growth!
- Be Resilient - Even if you have
a serious set back or loss, it is part your life's story.
You can integrate all of it. Just as a forest
is replanted after extensive logging, resilient people
figure out ways to adapt to what has been taken
them by time and/or circumstance.
- Find Your True Self Worth - All of us
have value; no matter how great or small your public
recognition and reputation. True self worth comes
from your personal inner resources and appreciation
your own self.
- Maintain a Good Self Image- Combine
flattery and critical self-analysis. Don’ t waste time
or energy putting yourself down. Focus on,
emphasize, and live in way that is consistent with
|Happening in January
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Feb/March 2006 Issue
Being with a (Much) Younger Guy
Dr. Dale Quoted
|TIPS: Changing our View of Those with Disability Differences
Many people in our world live with disability
Hearing loss, learning or developmental
disabilities, visual impairment, and spinal cord injuries
are among the multitude of disability differences that
set some of us apart from the “norm”. But what
is “normal” and how do we form our attitudes about
whom or what is “different”?
According to Everybody’s Different by Miller and
Sammons (Brookes, 1999), gaining knowledge
acceptance of those with disability differences
- New Awareness of disability differences in
- Better Understanding of your emotional reactions
to those with disability differences
- Increased Skills for interacting with disability
It's never too late to change your
It is never too late to gain a new understanding of
those with disability
differences (or, for that matter, any other
you might be harboring.) It is useful to ask yourself
how you developed your attitude and who helps you
maintain or perpetuate this attitude that you are
now challenging. Remember, without challenge there
can be no change. Think about what is invested in
keeping or hanging onto your former attitudes. How
have they served you? In what ways are those
attitudes limiting? To whom can you turn to revisit
your old attitudes to begin to construct different
Examine your attitude
By examining your attitudes and being open to
establishing a new perspective, you can free
yourself, your family and your children from a
restricted and often stereotypic view of the world
and begin to look at people who are different from
you with compassion. Remember that your attitude
about a person who has a disability difference may
have a vast impact on how that person feels about
or herself and how they are viewed by others. By
exploring ways in which you can alter your attitude,
you will be making a stand for what is right and
showing others love, care and support.
Here are some TIPS adapted from the Anti-
Defamation League to help you change your
toward those with disability differences and to take a
- Accept Your Feelings – It is normal to
have a range of feelings when you think about or
encounter someone who has a disability difference.
Acknowledging your feelings is essential to making a
good decision about what you want to do. Accept all
of the feelings you have; even the ones you think
- Recognize Myths, Beliefs and Assumptions
– Most of what we believe about people who
have disability differences comes from stories, family
lore, and little is based on fact.
- Speak Out – Be vocal about prejudicial
jokes and slurs aimed toward those who have a
disability difference. It’s NOT enough to refuse to
- Don’t Be a Bystander - Stand up for
someone who is targeted for being “different”. Be
- Find Support – Discuss your concerns
about those who have disability differences with the
people themselves when appropriate, with your
family, friends, co-workers and peers.
- Become Educated – Learn about the
challenges of those who have disability differences
and share what you learn with others.
- Report Prejudicial Incidents – Accept
tolerance in the workplace, at school, in the
community. Express what you see as unfair.
- Think Before Reacting to Other’s Prejudicial
Comments – Keep calm and don’t respond
immediately. Try not to over-react emotionally but
first understand your feelings. Then respond
- Exercise Leadership – Model to others
exemplary behavior and spread the word about what
is and is not okay.
Your daily life is your temple and your religion.
DALE V. ATKINS Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist,
lecturer and media commentator who appears
on the Today show.
She has more than twenty-
years of experience as a relationship expert,
focusing on families, couples, parenting, aging well
and stress management.
Dr. Atkins is the author
and/or co-editor of several books including:
SistersFrom the Heart:
Their Private Thoughts about their Private
Families and their Hearing-Impaired
OK, You're My Parents
How to Overcome
Let Go of Anger and Create a Relationship that
Wedding Sanity Savers
Handle the Stickiest Dilemmas, Scrapes and
Questions that Arise on the Road to Your Perfect
Find out more....
As Seen on the TODAY SHOW
Wedding Sanity Savers
How to Handle the Stickiest Dilemmas, Scrapes and Questions that Arise on the Road to Your Perfect Day
You're My Parents
How to Overcome Guilt, Let Go of Anger, and Create a Relationship That Works
Now in Paperback!