How to Beat the January Blahs

by Lindy Nelson-Paryag

The shopping is done. The gifts are purchased, given, received and put away. The festive Christmas decorations are put away for another year. Not even a crumb of a Christmas cookie remains.

I’m not sure if anyone else gets a little blue at this time of year, but I recognize the January blahs as an annual visitor. It is reasonable that we might feel a bit let down after the non-stop activities and endless to-do lists in December. I’m also convinced that some of it is plain old exhaustion. We all know that the women single-handedly navigate the planning, shopping and orchestrating of family Christmas traditions. Weather also plays a part. As I get older, I notice that cold and gray days greatly impact my mood.

How do YOU beat the January blahs? I posed this question to my friends on Facebook recently and received a wide range of suggestions from exercise to starting a new project to curling up by a warm fire to getting a happy light.

My favorite remedy is the discipline of gratitude. This past year, I participated in Ann Voskamp’s “Joy Dare.” If we keep a record of three things we are thankful for each day, we will count one thousand gifts by the end of the year. Being intentional about gratitude and counting my blessings daily was a powerful testimony to me. There is proven scientific research to show that being grateful not only improves our attitude but also our overall health. My attitude and mood, even my sleeping were significantly improved when I was faithful with my discipline of gratitude.

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:34

What remedies do you have for the January blahs? In what ways do you practice the discipline of gratitude?  Leave a comment below and let us know.

Loving God,

Thank you for giving us breath so that we may give thanks. We know that you give us this gift of giving thanks because miracles happen when we are thankful. We live our lives more fully when we have grateful hearts. Thank you for loving us no matter what, for walking beside us on our best days and our worst days.  Amen

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Lindy’s devotional above has challenged me to practice more gratitude. I have been wanting to start a gratitude journal for a long time. I just never seem to get around to it.  I finally sat down and started one. It is a spin on the comfort mini album project I did last year.

Gratitude1

For this project, I’m using a calendar holder I purchased from the dollar store. (Dollar Tree)  Note: if you decide to do something similar, be sure to open box and make sure metal pieces are there!

I had to change the dimensions of the original project to fit the calendar holder.

The original video tutorial I used to create this project can be found here.

Below are photos of the first “page” with scripture. Notice the “My Prayer” piece that pulls out to hold my prayer of gratitude.

Turn the page, and another scripture verse is revealed.

Gratitude2  Gratitude3

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Each “page” offers many spots to record scripture based on gratitude, quotes as well as listing things I’m grateful for.  To the right, is the beginnings of the second page.

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And finally, the pages put in the calendar holder. For the pages I used paper from the Christmas Glory collection.

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Do you have a gratitude journal or practice the discipline of gratitude in some other way?

My prayer for you is that you:

give thanks in all circumstances;  for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  1 Thessalonians 5:18

 

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