In part one of our New Year, New You feature in last week’s inSide Drumheller, you will have hopefully found a few ideas to get you started on becoming a healthier person and what is available in the valley to help you achieve this.
This week we are looking at ways to improve your mind and spirit, would it be spending more quality time with the family, getting out of debt, being more organized, bettering yourself or having more fun.
The key to success is looking at what you really need to improve, tackling one area at a time, and stop proscrastination: do what you need to do and do it now, set some time aside in your busy schedule to free yourself from this burden.
In the valley, you will find plenty to help you on your way to bettering yourself and your quality of life.
Learn something new: this will open your horizons, help you forget about your busy life, make you feel good about yourself, improve your confidence and your mental health too. In the process, you will meet new people and it might even help you get a better paid job!
The Drumheller and District Further Education council offers an array of courses, from learning a new language, to cooking classes, improving your computer skills, finding or developing a new hobby, for instance photography. There’s even a course on public speaking and confidence.
If you are unemployed, you may even be able to get assistance, Annette Nielsen, program co-ordinator for the Drumheller and District Further Education told inSide Drumheller, “we work together with MH Enterprises and Alberta Immigration to help finance people to get their education and start their career.”
Join the library and make time to discover new authors. Did you know you can reserve books online via the library system and have access to 153 libraries?
Start a blog: it’s free, easy to set up and a great way to explore subjects you want to, it can also be a way to keep in touch with those people you have meant to contact for some time. Even the Mayor of Drumheller has one, so what are you waiting for?
Learn to play a new musical instrument, or create a band with friends. Concentrating on music is a great way to forget all your problems, it’s like taking a little vacation, and you will get a great feeling of accomplishment.
Learn a new board or card game, with your family or friends, a cheap, easy way to relax while learning a new skill. Why not play scrabble with your kids? A perfect way to have family fun and improve literacy skills.
Have a culture day where you and your family or friends visit all the museums and art galleries in the valley, find out about Drumheller’s history, and discover new artists.
How about trying quilting? Not only do quilts make a wonderful personal gift but it is also a great way to socialize, Bit’s and Pieces offers several options to get you started.
As well as offering classes, you can drop in anytime you want for advice or help and they also run a free social evening on Wednesdays.
Tara Semchuk, owner of Bit’s and Pieces explains why people may want to try it, “People get personal satisfaction out of it, some prefer to work on their project at home in solitary and find it relaxing, others like to come and sit in to do their projects and the socializing and meeting people and learning new tips and techniques.”
Bit’s and Pieces is also involved in Victoria’s Quilts whose mission is to provide handmade quilts to people with cancer in Canada at no cost to the recipient. “We have had lots of feedback on the comfort that people have got from the fact that complete strangers care about them” explained Tara.
As you can see the advantages of learning something new are many.
Get out of debt: it may be time to review your utility suppliers, are you getting the best deal? Contact them to find out about any special offers.
Shop around when getting your household or vehicle insurance.
Start a savings account, even if you only put $40 a month in the account, set up a direct transfer to come out at the beginning of the month, it will soon add up.
Maybe time to look for a new job? Work on your resume, get friends to look at it and give you feedback. Alternatively, use a professional service to do it for you, did you know The Drumheller Mail offers such service? And of course, don’t forget to check The Drumheller Mail online or in print for the latest job offerings.
Speak to your friends about possible openings where they work. Register on job sites to get notifications when new jobs appear in the area.
Is it time to shop around for a new mortgage too?
Taking the time to shop around for the best rates available will always pay off.
Declutter your house: clutter can be described as anything that is taking up space in your home that you no longer have any use for. Decluttering will help get rid of all those extra things and will make room in your life.
As you declutter, you will get a sense of relief and space, and it is probably the easiest way to relieve stress and you can even make some money in the process.
Start preparing for the spring clear up when the town offers a free service to remove your junk.
If it isn’t junk, what about giving it to the Salvation Army or Just You and I? Or how about organizing a big yard sale with your friends?
Go through your clothes too, do you really need to keep that top that you have had for years? Or that other one that has never fitted right? Have your children grown out of some of their clothes too? Is it time to let go of some of your worn out favourite shoes?
Take half a day to sort out your paperwork and find a good filing system that will be easily accessible and will ensure you stay on top of the paperwork so it isn’t such a big task.
Sort out your empty bottles, a quick way to declutter and make money too – did you know the DARTS bottle depot now offers a pick up service at the cost of a percentage of money made?
Hopefully those tips and resources should get you started on the way to a more organized life and help you find peace in your home.
Me time: don’t forget to spend time just for you.
Going to a spa, having a massage or pedicure is a great way to help you feel better about yourself quickly.
Have a full body check to minimize the effects stress may have on your body.
For instance, visit the Chiropractic Wellness Centre, as Dr. Imran Dharshi explains “Doctors can give you a new set of teeth, replace your eye if necessary, they can even replace your heart but they can’t replace your spine so you need to get it checked regularly and that’s where we come in, we are here to help your body help yourself.” Don’t forget that such treatments are often covered under your medical insurance.
Book a babysitter and go out for dinner with friends or to the theatre.
Making time for your own personal needs will give you an opportunity to relax, refocus, and recharge.
Volunteer: getting involved in a volunteering activity is a great way to learn new skills, meet new people, help make your community a better place, promote good or improve human quality of life but also to make contacts for possible employment and to have fun.
There is no shortage of community non profit organizations in the valley. Take a look at the Town of Drumheller Activity Guide Spring 2010 to get an idea of what is available.
The Drumheller Health Centre also have a volunteers resources department.
And there is also the Drumheller and District Humane Society. Could you help provide temporary accommodation to one of their rescued pets?
It takes time and commitment to volunteer, but your contributions to others and to your community will bring you feelings of self-fulfillment and the knowledge that you have made a difference.
These are only a few ways that can help you achieve a better New You in Drumheller, all you have to do is choose what it is you need to work on and take that first step.
Sources for some of the activities from the Town of Drumheller Activity Guide Spring 2010.