Setting realistic expectations for 2021

Barstow St.
Barstow St.(weau)
Published: Dec. 24, 2020 at 5:25 PM CST
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - 2020 featured COVID-19, murder hornets, a charged presidential election, and many more events that are getting people excited to say goodbye to this year, and hello to 2021.

However, how much will really be different once we flip the calendar pages? Clinical psychologist Joe Abhold agrees, this year was unlike any other.

Dr. Abhold told WEAU,

“I think this year has been unprecedented both in the clients that I have seen and on a national level the levels of depression and anxiety have really been going up throughout this year.”

With January right around the corner, this time of year can elicit hope and excitement for what the new year may bring.

“We sometimes think that the new year is going to be a completely new opportunity for us and everything is going to be great,” said Abhold.

However, the beginning months of 2021 will look similar to 2020. People will still need to stay home, and mask up.

Dr. Abhold recommends seeking a balanced approach when looking towards the new year.

“It’s really important for people to balance hope and optimism with realistic expectations. It’s going to take a while for things to get back to normal and there’s going to be challenges in the months ahead.”

While that may sound grim, he says it’s still important for people to find optimism going into 2021 and adds, gratitude is a great place to start.

“If you really think about the things that you do have to be grateful for. It can give you a feeling of positivity and warmth about yourself and then about moving forward that more good things will happen.”

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