Wishing you a new year full of Tremendousness*

Conference calls, calendar conflicts, connecting flights, cross-country collaboration, critiques, constant emails… It’s shocking that what seems so simple—just doing your job—can be so complicated.

So as 2018 begins we’d like to share a few of our favorite things, things that help us get through the day—both at work and at home. We find these wellness practices especially helpful at the start of the new year, the perfect time to reflect on the past and make resolutions for the future.

We’ve designed a few gifts we’ll be sending out shortly: some coasters, some stickers, some cards—all with some messages of wellness and positivity for the new year—for any year, or for any day.

Thanks for being part of Tremendousness’ world—and here’s to living well in 2018!

It’s our job to be curious—to meet new people, to ask hard questions, and to understand people, ideas, and things that might be completely new or foreign to us. It’s a trait we feel is important both at work and in our personal lives. That’s because curiosity breeds empathy, the ability to understand and appreciate another person’s feelings and perspectives. We know it ain’t easy, but simply talking to people outside our usual social circles helps us to better understand those with lives, experiences, and worldviews different from our own. Sometimes all it takes is asking “Why?” instead of “WTF?” You don’t have to agree with their positions or ideas. Just know that curiosity makes you smarter, kinder, and more interesting. Curiosity breeds empathy—and it’s contagious. Do your part. Pass it on. Be curious.

Yeah, work gets stressful sometimes. Life too! But one of the best ways to deal with the feeling of being overwhelmed is to take a minute and just… breathe. It doesn’t get any simpler. Mindfulness practice often focuses on the breath because it helps our minds to concentrate on something besides our thoughts. This lets us engage in the present moment and become more aware of the world outside our heads. Whether past regrets or future worries, thoughts are just the stories we tell ourselves about life—they’re not life itself. The point isn’t to avoid thoughts, it’s to take a break from them sometimes. So… need a break? Try this calming, two-minute mindfulness exercise: Close your eyes and inhale through your nose for 4 seconds, hold the breath for 7 seconds, then exhale out your mouth for 8 seconds. 4-7-8, that’s it. Repeat 6 times. Take a minute. Breathe. Be present.

Good vibes isn’t about a fantasy utopia. And resilience isn’t about avoiding negative emotions—it just lets them exist side by side with all your other feelings. We all endure frustrations and mourn losses, but the resilient among us get through it with a dose of positivity—being able to see some good, even when things aren’t going your way. Sounds great, right? Unsurprisingly, that kind of well-balanced response isn’t easy to achieve. Built-in survival mechanisms have wired our brains to give extra attention to negative events—but the fact is that on any given day we experience positive events with much greater frequency. The key to building resiliency lies in noticing and appreciating those positive experiences whenever they occur. Seek silver linings. Good vibes only. Be positive.

Research shows that an “attitude of gratitude” can measurably improve your overall well-being—both in the office and at home. That’s because gratitude helps increase happiness, reduce depression, improve health, and strengthen resiliency. That’s something to celebrate! Expressing appreciation to others is a great way to be grateful, but you can appreciate yourself, too! Go ahead and celebrate minor accomplishments in your day—savor the tiny victories. Maybe even start a gratitude journal that captures what you’re thankful for (studies also show that writing down grateful thoughts before bed helps you sleep better). Bonus: the benefits are self-perpetuating. Being grateful retrains your prefrontal cortex to appreciate and retain positive experiences and thoughts… and deflect negative ones. Celebrate every tiny victory. Make it a habit. Be grateful.

*(and goodness, kindness, fitness, happiness, & wellness!)