It’s a new year. It’s January. That means you need to write a long list of healthy resolutions, right? Wrong. Getting obsessed with new year goals could actually make your health worse.
It’s the same every year. We treat ourselves a bit too much over the festive season and we’re left feeling sluggish, guilty and in need of a new year reboot. At least, that’s what the ads are telling us. Bombarded with health products, we’re coerced into the new year, new me mindset. Enough’s enough. It’s time to make some genuinely healthy resolutions.
Life is a lot more relaxed around Christmas. We can eat copious amounts of cheese and chocolate because it’s all in the name of letting our hair down. Suddenly, January hits and the media changes its tune. Healthy living is in every headline. We’re surrounded by transformation pictures. The media pressure makes many of us pick challenging resolutions- and lots of them!
There’s nothing wrong with setting goals for your health. By all means, make your resolutions. Just make sure that you’re setting them for the right reasons. We don’t want to delve into low-carb diets or excessive exercise routines. Instead, let’s talk about the habits that are actually going to help you feel better. Here are some of our best suggestions for making healthy resolutions.
Take notice of your body
Do you actually need to lose half a stone by Valentine’s Day? The media are in a new year frenzy, and we understand why. January is the perfect time to promote healthy living, after a season of indulgence. There’s a whole industry operating around getting you back in shape. The question is, do you need to (and do you need to pay a hefty fee for the privilege)?
We’re suggesting a novel idea: take notice of your body. Sure, you’ve probably been treating yourself more than usual, but that doesn’t mean you need to take drastic action. Acknowledge how you feel and how you’re living. If your energy levels are low, it’s probably time to get back on track. Just do this in a way that’s going to make you feel your best.
Set different goals for your body. Instead of aiming to build abs of steel in two months, why not aim to run a bit further or get a bit stronger? You could even aim to wake up earlier and get in a morning walk before work. These small goals will help you notice improvements in the way you feel. Only then can you start to think about the way you look.
Rest up, there’s a long year ahead
Christmas is busy. Children need our undivided attention. Heavy nights are inevitable as we catch up with old friends from out of town. Just because we have time off work, it doesn’t mean we’ve actually had a break. Amidst flurries of to do lists, we forget to take some time to pause the chaos and acknowledge that we need to rest. Rest is starting to get the recognition it deserves in the healthcare sphere. It gives us chance to recharge our bodies and minds.
We all hope to achieve great things this year, as we rush to set goals for our health and careers. Write your lists, but accept that you might need some R&R before you can tackle them at full speed. There’s no sense in burning yourself out in January and flailing in the coming months. Slow and steady wins the race.
Healthy resolutions for your mind
Get long-term gratification by setting goals for your mind. Mental health is a broad term. We’re learning more about it, but for many of us it remains an unknown entity. What we do know is that the more you look after your mind, the more it’ll look after you.
Tough times crop up when we least expect them, that’s the way of the world. Being in control of your thoughts is a strong asset in the face of adversity. This isn’t something that happens by chance. It’s a journey, but it begins with small steps. This new year, make an effort to take care of your mental health and your other goals will seem far more achievable.
There’s several ways to go about this, so it’s important to find out what works for you. You may want to explore mindfulness and meditation, or you may simply want to take ten minutes every day to do something that brings you joy. If you want to take care of your mental health but don’t know where to start, check out our mental health blog post.