The holidays can be very hectic, and when we add the pressure of New Year’s resolutions, sometimes our good intentions can spiral out of control. Don’t let the stress get you down! Without pressure, we wouldn’t have diamonds or pearls. All of us are yearning to be okay and to be better than we were last year. I’m going to get outdoors more and enjoy nature. I’m going to learn a new hobby or skill. I’m going to get healthy. I’m going to travel more. I’m going to spend more time with my family. I’m going to give more and take less! As we reach to live bigger and better, remember to take it slow, and build your new habits up one at a time. There are plenty of ways to play out your New Year’s resolutions on the Gulf Coast, so start 2014 as the best you that you can be.
Learn a New Skill or Hobby
Why? When we learn new skills, we add new pathways and connections in our neural system. These connections help our brain age healthily. By growing the capacity of our brain function, we continue to increase our imagination and deepen our perspective. This can lead to better relationships and even better functioning on the job.
How: If you want to learn a new skill, we’ve got plenty of places to flex your muscle memory along the Gulf Coast. Try your hand on a chartered fishing boat. Your captain and crew will help you reel in a big catch and will educate you on the various Gulf ecosystems. Explore your creative side at the Coastal Arts Center of Orange Beach. Get hands on with a pottery wheel at The Clay Studio and feel the heat at Alabama’s only public access glass studio, the Hot Shop where you can make your own glass creation. Blow a glass ornament, garden flower, twisted desk flower or paperweight.
Why? The benefits of a healthy diet and regular exercise extend far beyond that beach body. From keeping your mind healthy into old age to elevating your happiness and inner peace, there are plenty of reasons to honor your temple. Remember, it’s your body, and it’s the only one you’ll ever have! Treat it with respect.
How: One of the best ways to keep your body engaged is to quiet that mind chatter! A yoga studio is a great place to exercise this skill, and we happen to have a fantastic yoga studio in Gulf Shores. Glow Yoga hosts beginner workshops to integrate you into the practice and heated power yoga classes to help you get long and limber. Hot yoga is a great way to detox your body through your skin (this gives your kidneys and liver a break!), so go ahead and kill two birds with one stone. Whatever you do, keep it fun and watch out for their specialty workshops like paddleboard yoga. Speaking of paddleboards, the Gulf State Adventure Center rents out paddleboards by the hour or day, and as long as it’s not windy, even beginners will experience smooth sailing across Lake Shelby.
Enjoy More Family Time
Why? By spending time with your family, you relationships and learn more about yourself and others. Our families are a foundation for our lives. Reinforce valuable life skills in your children and loved ones by giving them a little bit of your time every day.
How: There are plenty of ways to enjoy more family time together, and simple things can make the most impact. Go jogging along the shoreline with your spouse. Explore the national seashore or our lovely state park system. Take the kids on a beach trip and team up to see who can make the best sandcastle, or enjoy a board game on a night in. Looking for something a little more special? Take a ride on a hot air balloon! The neighboring town of Foley has a hot air balloon festival in late spring, but there are also rides available for purchase all year long. If your family isn’t complete without your canine companions, bring them too! Fort Morgan is a dog-friendly beach, and Meyer has plenty of dog-friendly houses and condos that would make the perfect home away from home.
Why? Travel makes us happy, which is why we stand by giving experiences instead of things. Your dad is more likely to enjoy a round of golf over a new pair of golf shoes. Things break and get lost, but memories can last forever. Give the gift of happiness! Get out and explore the world.
How: Consider travelling in the off-season. Everyone wants to come to the beach in the summer, but the beach is beautiful all year long. Travelling in the off-season allows for cheaper fares, and as a bonus, it’s usually much less crowded. Another perk of beaching it in the south is our sub-tropical climate. We often have sunny winter days well in the 70’s. Even short trips are good enough to break up the monotony of your routine, so come for a weekend or take a few days off during the week. For those of you who are able to travel during the weekdays, we run great specials for the midweek. We also run discounts on certain properties based on owner preference, so check out our Hot Deals section, or check out our specials section for time and event based discounts. Meyer makes it easy to travel on a budget.