Happy New Year Lewis County! It’s crazy how fast time flies. Some of us will miss 2017, while others aren’t too sad to see it go. Either way, a new year can mean a fresh start – a chance to set and achieve new goals. Unfortunately, it’s common knowledge that many New Year’s resolutions are long forgotten by March, but there is a solution. The answer is to break down your goals into daily habits and build these into your life. It also helps to make goals that are more comprehensive, so you’re less likely to get bored and walk away. Here are a few suggestions for New Year’s resolutions that will positively impact your life, along with where to find the support to best achieve them here in Lewis County.
Studies have shown that positive relationships contribute strongly to our overall happiness, health and longevity. One study from the National Institute of Health summarized it best, “Social relationships—both quantity and quality—affect mental health, health behavior, physical health and mortality risk.” There are lots of ways to build positive relationships here in Lewis County. Here are a few places to start:
- Join a Meetup group. There are many in Lewis County, varying from adventure seekers to intellectual book lovers, to photographers and jazz lovers. Or join a local special interest club like the Centralia-Chehalis Vintage Auto Club.
- Connect with people who have been there. Whether you are a recovering alcoholic or addict, or have experienced a life trauma like death or divorce, there is a good group of people who can help and support you here in Lewis County.
- Find a faith community that matches your beliefs and head to church.
- If you are an entrepreneur or business person, join a group like the Young Professionals of Lewis County or your local Chamber of Commerce.
- Join a local club like Kiwanis, Shriners, Rotary or Elks.
Contributing to your community and giving back to those in need are both proven to improve overall happiness. They also give you a sense of purpose and meaning, which has exponential benefits of its own. Joining a group like Kiwanis, Shriners, Rotary or Elks is a great way to give back. Many of these groups engage in charitable projects, both at home and abroad, throughout the year. Here are a few other ways to engage and give back:
- Lend a hand with United Way of Lewis County.
- Donate or help out the Human Response Network.
- Ask how you can help The Forgotten Children’s Fund.
- Donate to the Salvation Army.
- Support Glean Me Lewis County.
- Donate supplies and time to the Lewis County Animal Shelter
- Support the work of the Visiting Nurses Foundation.
- Share a meal with someone in need at Gather Church or your local food bank.
Ok, I know, getting in shape is probably the most common and most easily abandoned New Year’s Resolution. Still, having a healthy body is so important to your overall happiness, it simply can’t be left out. There are many opportunities to get fit here in Lewis County. Here are a few to get you started:
- Join a group fitness class at Thorbeckes Fitlife Centers.
- Sign up for a gym membership at Anytime Fitness.
- Join the New Year Challenge at Embody in Centralia.
- If you’re entering your later years, check out these Senior Exercise Opportunities.
- Build a workout routine of your own with the outdoor exercise equipment at Centralia’s Fort Borst Park.
- Simply walk or jog through Lewis County’s many beautiful parks and other community spaces.
Go On an Adventure
This year, embark on a new adventure! There are so many things to explore, you could find something new every month, week or even day. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Hit the slopes on White Pass.
- Set off on an outdoor adventure from Packwood.
- Experience DeGoede Bulb Farm and Gardens.
- Go fishing, camp or simply explore the beautiful Riffe Lake, Lake Mayfield or Mineral Lake.
- Venture out onto our local bike trails.
- Explore all the amazing sites at Mount Saint Helens, Gifford Pinchot National Forest or Mount Rainier National Park.
- Hike a section of the famed Pacific Crest Trail.
- Explore on Horseback.
- Climb the Indoor Rock Wall at Thorbecke’s Chehalis.
- Visit a museum. Lewis County has several museums to choose from including the Lewis County Historical Museum, the Veterans Memorial Museum and the King Agriculture Museum.
- Take a leap with Skydive Toledo.
- Discover the stunning waterfalls of Lewis County.
Learn Something New
Life is full of new things to learn and experience. Here are just a few of the many opportunities to grow in Lewis County. After all, you never want to stop learning!
- Sign up for a Continuing & Community Education Class.
- Attend Centralia College’s free Lyceum Lecture Series, Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. The series has fascinating speakers on a series of interesting topics.
- Take a course at Centralia College.
- Take a cooking class at Lewis County Table.
- Learn to Garden with WSU Lewis County Master Gardeners.
- Learn the art of beekeeping with Lewis County Beekeepers.
- Be prepared with first aid and CPR classes.
- Learn to blow glass.
- Take up beading at Bead Opus.
- Take a class at Bethel School of the Arts.
- Learn to play a musical instrument.
As we embark on a new year and you commit to your own resolutions, be sure to select ones that will enhance your life, then find a supportive community to help you stick to it. In life, it’s not really about losing weight or making more money. It’s about living, and living is best when you build community, give back, get healthy, adventure and continually learn. Happy New Year Lewis County!