I admit that every year I make them and every year I start strong and waver within a month. It usually involves working out to lose 10 pounds. On average it takes 66 days before something becomes a routine. That is a long time for life to interrupt, reset the clock and set us up for failure! Granted there are some very driven people who focus and let nothing get in their way; those people tend to be successful with New Year resolutions. For the rest of us, I thought I would share some suggestions for the New Year that will encourage healthy habits.
First, everyone should strive to be financially healthy. We’re coming off of a big holiday season and heading into tax season. What a tough time of year to stash money away. That is why I love the 52 week challenge in which you start out simple and build on it. For week one, you deposit $1, for week 2 you deposit $2 and continue each week until the 52nd week of the year when you put the most away, $52. The great news is that if you are successful you will stash $1,378 away to use for Christmas shopping, a splurge or to invest. To help be successful, consider putting the money into a container with a lid glued on and a simple slot to put the money into. This will help to prevent you from retrieving it for other uses. Or give it to a close friend to hold for you. Also deposit the money on the same day every week so that it does become a routine.
Next, we want to be physically healthy. I encourage you to continue browsing this blog for healthy eating and exercise suggestions. It sounds simple enough: eat well, exercise at least three times a week, get enough sleep, and wash your hands frequently. It’s not as easy as it sounds, so I’ll give you couple of tips to help you be more successful. First find a work out that you enjoy, get a buddy to keep you motivated, and hang a calendar in which you get to mark off the days you worked out in a big red marker. What satisfaction there is in seeing those big red X’s accumulating! On the eating front, clear your cabinets of all of the junk! If it’s not there, it is much easier to avoid it when the cravings hit! Shop weekly or twice a week for fresh veggies to satisfy a crunchy craving and fruits to subdue those sweet cravings. Allow yourself your favorite treat in a small serving size if you’ve gathered at least 3 red X’s on your workout calendar each week! Set a family bedtime and ensure everyone sticks to it. Most of the time, electronics are the culprit delaying bedtime, thus I encourage a set time where everyone stows their electronic devices in the kitchen, turn off the television, and rests in their bedroom reading or working an activity book before they go to sleep. Avoiding blue light from electronics right before bedtime will help you get a more restful sleep.
Finally, let’s address emotional health. Everyone should have a hobby or hobbies that they truly enjoy, and they should make time to do so. Don’t underestimate the power of emotional health in conjunction with your physical health for a happy lifestyle. I love lists, so I encourage everyone to make a daily list of what to do. It helps to also add your workout, healthy eating and your hobby to your daily list. When you’ve completed it, cross it off your paper or delete it from your electronic device. It is very satisfying to complete your list each day.
Take a few minutes to make your list and get started on enjoying a happy and healthy 2015!