Hunting the Good Stuff in the New Year

MSG Jennifer Loredo, Senior Enlisted Advisor for the Army’s Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness Program

Jennifer Loredo and her children pose for a family photo in Falls Church, Va.

Jennifer Loredo and her children pose for a family photo in Falls Church, Va.

The holiday season is officially over and we are already two weeks into the new year.

I enjoyed closing out 2014 by spending time with family and reflecting on all the good things that surrounded me last year. I am also happy to say I did a fairly good job at being flexible through the holiday season and it certainly paid off. I was more relaxed and felt prepared when there was a last-minute change. It also gave me the opportunity to reflect on what really mattered and maintain a calm and positive attitude when around my family. I’m glad I set that goal for myself!

As we begin 2015, consider starting a new tradition of Hunting the Good Stuff.

Hunt the Good Stuff is a simple way to build optimism and gratitude. You may already do something similar around the Thanksgiving table when everyone says what they are thankful for, but Hunt the Good Stuff is more about sharing the good things that happen to us all as part of our daily lives. Sometimes it’s the simple and small things we leave out but make the most impact over time. If you put into practice each day, Hunting the Good Stuff may lead to better overall health and sleep , may lower instances of depression and improve life satisfaction.

So, here is how it works.

  • Write down three good things that happened to you each day.
  • Next to each good thing, write a reflection about one of the following:  why the good thing happened, what this good thing means to you, what you can do tomorrow to enable more of this good thing, what ways you or others contribute to this good thing.

Do you already Hunt the Good Stuff? What results have you seen? What tips would you share with others? I Hunt the Good Stuff every day and I’ve seen first-hand how this simple daily exercise can greatly improve my outlook.

I recently received an e-mail from an Army officer that participated in a training course I offered a few years ago.  In the message, he told me that he continues to use the skills and often sees positive results, proving to him that there is true value in proactively strengthening your resilience and optimism.

For me, this note was my Hunt the Good Stuff. Hearing from former students, readers of this blog, and others that I have had the pleasure of meeting, inspires me tremendously.  I think I learn more from you than you do from me.  That’s why continuing to connect with others is one of my goals for 2015.

For me, I know that 2015 is going to be a very exciting year filled with many life-changing events.  Not only will my oldest daughter graduate from high school and go off to college but I will also retire from the Army after 21 years of service.

Smile, it’s a new year!

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Hunting the Good Stuff in the New Year