A Healthy Welcome
The first month of a new year is always a great jumping off point for starting fresh. Even if it’s not on your new year’s resolutions list, this is a great time to rethink your approach to wellness. Who doesn’t want to be as healthy as they can, and imbue their life with a new sense of purpose?
You don’t have to set your sights on making sweeping life changes. The best approach is to start with focusing on the smaller stuff. Maybe that’s walking more each week, or cooking one more meal at home. Starting smaller will help you work toward your larger goals—without feeling overwhelmed.
Your goals need to be realistic goals
Too often we can start an initiative with huge, vague goals like “get in shape” or “eat better.” These types of goals are ones most of us are less likely to stick with. More specific goals, and ones that are manageable, like taking three 60-minute walks each week, or replacing the burger and fries lunch with a salad are the kind that you can actually keep up with. KEEP IT SIMPLE—Realistic. Achievable. You’re much more likely to create healthier habits this way.
So what do realistic and achievable goals look like when you're thinking about wellness? Part of the equation is physical, but don’t forget about your emotional wellbeing. Here are some common goals that go a long way to renewing your passion for wellbeing.
Walking is a most effective exercise
Walking increases your metabolism. It will result in burning calories, but it also helps to prevent muscle loss. This is particularly important as we get older. Studies have also shown that daily walking can lessen your risk of type 2 diabetes, lower your blood pressure, and ward off cardiovascular issues.
Take a different approach to self-care
Most of our schedules will allow for 60 minutes of self-care practice one day a week. Self-care can include exercise, so maybe going for a bike ride, or swimming laps, but it’s more than just that. Some other ideas for self-care could be reading a new book, talking to a therapist, or quietly and mindfully sitting in nature. This is a goal that is realistic & achievable, and by the end of the year you can have tried out 52 different self-care activities!
Make the kitchen a place of play and creativity
It’s far too easy to get stuck in a cooking rut. Week in and week out you can find yourself resorting to the same old meals. This can end up feeling totally the opposite of how cooking should feel—energizing, fun, and rewarding. A very manageable goal is to seek out a new recipe every week. It could be a hearty soup, or a protein-packed smoothie. This is a goal that might even spark a newfound love of cooking, and make the people at your dinner table really happy!
Feeling better, and improving your overall wellness is a worthwhile objective. The start of new year is a great place to put a stake in the ground and set some goals that will help you achieve that. Just remember, keep it simple. Don’t over complicate it.