Happy New Year! I’m happy to say that I’ve started my New Year off right so far with some old and some new healthier habits. I even started on January 1st which is very unusual for me but it was time. Plus, with the holiday being in the middle of the week, waiting for Monday (and I love my Mondays!) did not seem like a good option.
End of the year stress
How is it that things like our health can get so out of hand in just one, give or take depending on how long you’ve been celebrating, month? It’s like everything gets off track, you don’t know if you’re coming or going, everything is a party or super stressful, schedules and routines go out the window and life becomes complete chaos. Not to mention, 2019 was honestly one of the most stressful years I’ve had in a while. I don’t like to ever blame a particular year for stress but, yeah, 2019 was a doozy. So anyhow, here we are back at it for another new beginning, another 366 opportunities, another year of hopes, dreams and goals for 2020.
Turning it around
I have some things that are really going right for me at the moment and I feel it is because I jumped right in to my goals on January 1st instead of procrastinating like I often do. Here are some things I’m working on right now.
1. Cleaned up my eating. (This is always a given for January 1st.) I gave up all the snacks I’ve been living on for the last month. Threw out all the leftovers, the cookies, fudge, cheese (ok, I kept the cheese, it’s low carb), gave up all the stuff that makes me want to indulge a little too much. I’ve found that a low carb eating style really works pretty well for me. I’ve never committed fully enough to consider it to be keto, but my choices lean towards low carb, protein, some fat, lots of veggies, little bit of fruit, nuts, and minimal to no processed foods.
2. No alcohol. This one is tough for me. I’ve gotten into a pretty solid routine of nightly wine for some time now. And also added in on the regular…some beer, a few different rums, peanut butter whiskey, Café Patron…ok, yeah, time to make some changes. Seems I’ve heard that 1-3 drinks per week is considered acceptable for health and social appropriateness. So that will be my goal from here on out. 1-3 total drinks per week. Not totally eliminating but getting good control over it. I’ve started drinking some hot teas as an alternative just to give me something else to not get bored. Alcohol has become, or maybe it has always been, such an integral part of society and of our daily and social lives. It’s the Mommy juice, girls night, relaxation, every occasion mandatory beverage. If you need a little motivation to cut back yourself, check out This Naked Mind by Annie Grace. She puts a whole new perspective on alcohol that will make you rethink your choices.
3. 30 Day Yoga Journey. I miss yoga. I don’t know what happened to my yoga practice but it has been non-existent for way too long. I have been following Yoga with Adriene on YouTube and always recommend her for anyone looking to get started with yoga. She has videos for everything from low back pain to anxiety to sleep, stressful day, morning stretch, weight loss… you name it, she has it. This series is called Home and is about coming back to what feels good and what your heart desires. Adriene’s little nuances and cute dog Benji will suck you in for sure. My yoga practice is part of me getting back to myself. I’ve realized that over this past year, I’ve let go of being concerned with myself on so many levels. I wasn’t prioritizing myself, even though I preach it all the time. I wasn’t making time for anything having to do with me. Yoga is 30 minutes a day for me. We all deserve that. Seriously.
4. 30 Day Squat Challenge. This just gets me back into a little bit of a physical activity routine. I did it last year but sadly didn’t continue past the 30 days. This year, I’m consciously creating a better routine with it instead of just getting it done. Not having wine and not doing them at 10:00 at night is proving to be a better habit than how it went last year and hopefully will continue. By day 30 I’ll be doing 100 squats per day.
5. Meditation. Download the Insight Timer App. Pick your time and your topic. Just do it. I’ve been meditating for years, actually since I started massage school 25 years ago. Most days I do only 10 minutes but it makes a world of difference. I love that my boyfriend has taken on this routine with me. I believe the world would be a much better place if we all took just 10 minutes a day to meditate.
6. Vision Board. This is going to be an annual tradition. New Year’s Day, we all sat down and went through magazines, I had some really old magazines at my office but we even bought a few new ones for this purpose. I found that my travel and more extravagant selections were limited, so how could I create my vision for 2020 with those kind of limitations? It was really a nice afternoon spent with my boyfriend, my daughter and her friend. Such a feel good kind of day. Exactly as it should be.
7. Celery juice. I feel so good drinking celery juice. It’s technically not juice, I guess, I do it in my Nutribullet which is super easy and it gets done and I drink it. The clean up is so easy and you don’t need 20 stalks of celery for a tiny bit of juice. I use maybe 2 or 3 and throw in some kale, spinach, blueberries, cilantro, ginger or whatever is on hand and goes good with it. I know there is debate on what is better, juicing or using the whole vegetable. Like I said, when it’s easy, I can do it in about 5 minutes, it tastes great…that’s what counts for me and I’m getting some super healthy nutrients into my body, benefiting in ways such as helping digestion and decreasing bloating, improved cholesterol and reduced blood pressure. You’ll just feel healthier drinking it. It’s cleansing and refreshing.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar. This is an old go to for me. Anytime I’m feeling boggy, blah and just run down, a few glasses of apple cider vinegar perks me back up. I feel like it’s so cleansing to my body. Not everyone loves the taste so there are gummies that may be more tolerable for you or you can add honey, lemon or add it to your tea. I’ve come to love and even crave the taste of it at times. The benefits of apple cider vinegar are numerous, ranging from heart health to weight loss to lowering blood sugar levels. You’ll want to get organic apple cider vinegar and with the “mother” (aka the floaty stuff).
9. Happy Coffee. Where would I be without my happy coffee? The stressful year I mentioned earlier…not really sure how I would have gotten by without happy coffee. It seriously made every day just a little more manageable and helped me to know that I could make it through. No, I’m not talking about Starbucks or your everyday ordinary coffee. Happy Coffee is a special blend of nootropic ingredients that promote the release of your happiness hormones resulting in improved mood, increased energy and even weight loss as a bonus. I personally lost 25 pounds this year! It’s now also available as lemonade for an additional afternoon boost. I’ll be starting that next week so I will keep you posted how it goes.
10. Massage Therapy. You wouldn’t believe how infrequently I’ve gotten massages this past year or two. I will say that my boyfriend gives a fantastic massage (and pedicure for that matter). I am certainly grateful for that, but taking an hour of your day a couple times a month, to forget about the world and all your stress, and give your body the attention it needs to let go and be completely at peace, is one of the most healing things, mentally and physically, you can do for yourself. As a massage therapist, again I preach this and tell people how important it is to take care of themselves but I’ve not made it a priority in my own life recently. I already called and scheduled my first massage for this month, I’m also planning on a facial and a pedicure.
All the feels
So, basically I’ve jumped all in on some old habits and some new ones this past week. I’m sure some will go by the wayside but my intention is to continue prioritizing my self, my health and my choices. What it really comes down to is how you want to feel. I recently purchased a book called The Desire Map for a friend who is going through a time of renewal and redirection. It’s all about setting goals based on how you want to feel. The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte is an amazing guide to help you start off your New Year based on your burning desires and core beliefs. I’m so thankful I thought of this book for my friend because it reminded me that I was overdue for an overhaul on my own intentions and desires. I’m sure that’s had a huge impact on my current motivation.
I hope this has been inspiring to you. I hope you are reminded to prioritize yourself. Please reach out if you’d like any additional info on the topics I talked about. I always love to connect with anyone open to growth and inspiration in their lives.
Be healthy and zen,