What do you want your 2021 to look like?
Picture yourself in December 2021—How will you look? How will you feel?
How do you make that picture a reality?
First, take a moment to step back and appreciate everything you have been through this year. 2020 was a rocky one for most of us and taking time to reflect on what you have endured and the lessons you have learned is a mindful way to begin your 2021.
Now, apply that same mindfulness to this year. Don't get caught up in the diet fads, detoxes, pills, and powders that promise you a "better you". Instead, appreciate where you are right now and be gentle with yourself as you work to improve your health and wellness. Use these helpful, simple tips below to start making realistic, sustainable, and healthy changes to your life this year so you can fully see yourself in December 2021 and be proud.
Tip 1: Commit to one small nutrition change every month. Before you know it, you will have adopted 12 healthy nutrition habits! Examples of small nutrition changes: switch from white flour products to whole grain products; make one meal every week vegetarian or vegan; replace sugary drinks with low-calorie alternatives.
Tip 2: Drink more water: You need water for just about everything that happens inside of your body. Not to mention, a hydrated body on the inside means a more youthful, glowing appearance on the outside. To find out how much water you should at minimum be consuming, try this easy math problem: divide your bodyweight in lbs by 3 = ozs. of water you should be consuming daily.
Tip 3: Don't focus too much on the calories: Instead, focus on the types of foods you're eating. By selecting a variety of colorful fruits, vegetables, and legumes for your diet, you will start to view food as an abundant fuel source instead of something that needs to be restricted and controlled. For example, instead of reminding yourself what foods you can't put on your plate, remind yourself of all the good-for-you fuel that you get to enjoy and nourish your body with.
Tip 4: Practice meditation: But seriously this time. Commit to just 3 minutes every day to sitting in stillness and using your breath as a focal point. Don't be harsh on yourself when your mind starts to wander away. The goal is to let it do so, but bring it back each time to your breath.
Tip 5: Make movement a priority daily: Even if it's only 10 minutes, do something active Monday-Sunday. Easy ways to fit in more movement: going for shorter, but more frequent walks; taking stretch breaks at work, or at your desk; parking further away from grocery stores and restaurants.
Tip 6: Get your sleep schedule back on track: Whether you make the commitment to turn off electronics for an hour before bed or you just commit to an earlier bed-time, going out of your way to make your sleep an important part of your life can do wonders for your health and wellness.
Most importantly, keep in mind how you picture yourself in December of 2021 and remember how you want to feel this year every day. Maybe you want to feel stronger? Peaceful? Whatever word you're connected to, for whatever reason, set that as your main goal and work every month with the tips above to help get yourself there.