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Mental health experts say to watch the wording when making resolutions

PHOTOS: New Year's Eve around the world
Posted at 6:12 PM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 19:27:08-05

CLEVELAND — In a year when so many of the things people wanted to do were replaced by things that were needed, 2021 could be the year to meet goals.
But mental health experts say if there is one take away from 2020, it is: be easy on yourself.

"There's not a big difference between December 30 and January 2," Adam Borland with the Cleveland Clinic said. That is what Borland advises clients to do if they want to make resolutions toward the end of the year. He encourages people to start "right now."

"I think resolutions is our American culture type thing, so there's some things that just makes us us, and resolutions is one of those," said Robyn Hill, a licensed counselor in the Cleveland area. She said after everything that happened in 2020, people should look toward the new year but, "I think we have this false sense of the New Year's want to change, and all of this other stuff that's going to go away."

Hill encourages people who want to make resolutions to be mindful of the choices they make.

"And I just, I'm just encouraged that they'll be holistic," she said.

"I think it's wonderful to have resolutions, but I just want to encourage people to think of them a little bit differently," said Dr. Carolyn Ievers-Landis about setting the traditional long-term goals after a year like 2020.

She is a clinical psychologist with University Hospitals. She said 2020 can teach people what they really need.

"What I want to say about resolutions is, I want people to think about them not in terms of that you can make something and break it or keep it but that you are moving towards your values," Dr. Ievers-Landis said.

It's that make it or break it attitude that isn't good for 2021. For Borland, that attitude means watching our words too.

"A goal was something that we can work towards, right?" he said. "I think in general, we tend to be our own harshest critics."