Welcome to the second newsletter of Nurturing Our Village!
We have been established to provide resources to families and children to help them thrive. In addition to adoption and foster care, we have a host of resources for families facing terminal illness, life with special needs, and other critical issues. You’ll find many kinds of resources on our site including support groups, camps, hotlines, mentoring, coaching, sources for scholarships, donations, and more. We’re hoping whether you’re the one in need, or you know someone in need, you are able to find a resource or an organization to make your journey easier. In this issue, we’re going to focus on tips to get you off to a strong start for the new year, and highlight a number of organizations to strengthen you or those around you.
NEW YEAR It’s 2023! The change of times may mean different things to different people. For some people, it is a time of looking forward to new things; for others it’s a time of reflection and feelings of loss. For most of us, it’s a little of both. Should you find yourself grieving a loss or preparing for better days, cultivating gratitude can help you appreciate all that you do have and increase your satisfaction with life.
CULTIVATING GRATITUDE It is helpful to get into the habit of noticing the things we have, the things that we appreciate, and the people that we are grateful for. This requires slowing down and taking inventory of those blessings in our lives, and the potential of them that we have yet to realize. Consider starting a Gratitude Journal. Each day, think of three things that you are grateful for and write them down. Rather than making a general statement, such as “I am grateful for my friends,” be more specific about what you appreciate, such as “I am grateful that my friend joined me for lunch today.” Once you have engaged in the art of cultivating gratitude, you’re in a great place to work on your vision for 2023.
GOAL SETTING We probably all launch out into each new year armed with dreams and resolutions. Have you had trouble staying consistent with your New Year’s goals? It’s not too late to reboot. First, to distinguish your goals from wishes, make them SMART goals. Big businesses track their progress by setting SMART goals. We can too.
Specific: Avoid ambiguous goals. Make yours specific and clearly defined. “I want to lose 10 pounds”.
Measurable: Measure your progress with specific criteria and milestones. Break down your overall goal into smaller steps. To lose ten pounds, what do need to do to lose one pound? How and when will you do the activity that you need to do to lose one pound? For example, I will stretch every morning as soon as I wake up and drink water instead of juice.
Achievable: Your goal must be achievable. It is not likely that you can lose 100 pounds in one year. To set a goal too lofty will court a feeling of failure and defeat.
Relevant: Keep it relevant to your life’s purpose. Why are you choosing the goal that you are? How will this move you closer to who you want to become?
Timely: In order to attain a goal, you need to give yourself a timeline. Bring in the sense of urgency into the equation. When are you starting? When will you finish?
Charting and reaching your goals contributes to your overall wellness, physically, mentally and spiritually. Challenges don’t usually get easier, but we get stronger as we meet them. Let’s get stronger together.
SELF CARE & COMMUNITY CARE Can you consider adding as a goal this year to reach out to someone in need around you? What can you do to make someone’s burden lighter? Can you make a meal, do a chore for someone, or call them periodically and see how they’re doing? We all have something we can do to Nurture those in Our Village. One easy thing you can do is check out some of the support groups that are available, and let others around you know about them. Below are a few examples of what you can find on the Nurturing Our Village site.
Parents Helping Parents – The Parental Stress Line is a toll-free, 24/7 confidential helpline for parents who need to discuss issues related to their children. Trained volunteer counselors answer the Parental Stress Line and offer support, empathy, encouragement, information, referrals, and crisis intervention. https://www.parentshelpingparents.org/stressline
On Your Feet Foundation – Provides services to birth moms who have given their children up for adoption. Runs retreats, support groups, and mentoring programs. http:// https://onyourfeetfoundation.org
For Parents with Adverse Prenatal Diagnosis
Prenatal Partners for Life – Support, information & encouragement for carrying to term with an adverse prenatal diagnosis and support for raising your child with special needs after birth. http:// https://prenatalpartnersforlife.org
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Nurturing Our Village has been created to help foster, adoptive and all other parents and children connect to the resources they need to thrive. We also want to connect those wanting to help with opportunities that will make an impact. There is a place for everyone in Our Village.