Did you know that adding something positive to your life during Lent, alongside making a sacrifice, can provide a major boost to your mental health?
When many people sacrifice a particular vice or habit on Ash Wednesday, Maison Vie’s founder and licensed marriage and family therapist Susan Harrington is suggesting people also add positive reinforcement to their lives. Instead of just giving up alcohol, sweets, social media, etc., she is recommending everyone add an intention this Lent that improves their family life, betters themselves or helps others.
“Let’s use this time not only to make sacrifices but also to improve our families, ourselves, and our community, doing something that lasts far beyond Lent,” Susan said.
While many people make a sacrifice that typically concludes with the coming of Easter, Susan wants to help people develop happier and healthier families all year long. This Lent, gather with your family and create a plan for a daily or weekly activity that focuses on enhancing your time together.
“Contrary to popular belief, good mental health does not mean feeling happy all or even most of the time. Of course, happiness is wonderful, and we should all feel happy now and again – it’s just not the cause or effect of good mental health. Instead, good mental health means feeling and thinking in a positive manner more often than not.”
Easy Suggestions for Families
Weekly activities: Play a board game, video call a distant family member, visit infrequently seen extended family, take a one-tank trip, family bike ride, feed the ducks, take a nature hike, work in a soup kitchen, prepare and enjoy a meal together.
Daily activities: Hug each family member, ask about a family member’s day, nurture a window box garden, compliment each family member
Easy Suggestions for Individuals
Take a class, work on a long-neglected or yet-to-be-started side project, mentor someone, focus on really starting to work out to enhance your health, start volunteering for a charity.
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About Maison Vie New Orleans Therapy and Counseling
Maison Vie, which translates as “life-giving home” in Cajun French, provides affordable therapy and counseling services in the New Orleans area for Families, LGBTQ+, Children, and Groups. Whether you are in need of support and counseling through a challenging situation or you’re just ready to move in a new, more positive direction, Maison Vie’s therapists are specifically trained to guide relationships toward healing and happiness by providing an environment filled with acceptance, care, respect, and openness.