Kick Start the New Year!
Buh bye 2018. Hello 2019. Most of us are thinking about new goals, revisiting the ones you didn’t meet this year, and looking forward to a fresh start; including myself. Whether your goals are big or small there are a few small things you can do to jump start your day one day at a time. These small but mood setting changes can help you get your day started right and set new healthy habits for the upcoming year.
Here are five things you can do to improve your day.
Wake and thank - The very first thing you reach for when you open your eyes should NOT be your phone. Unless if it’s to turn off the alarm. But once you turn off the buzzer put the phone down. I repeat, put the phone down. I used to reach for my phone first thing to see what I missed on Instagram or check my text messages and emails. But I started to notice that it was too much stimulation so early in the morning that it drained me. So I changed my routine. I’ve made it a daily habit to give myself a few minutes every morning as soon as I wake up to giving thanks and setting the intentions for the day. It takes me two to three minutes to lay in bed, in silence, and say what I am thankful for. “Thank you for a new day”. “Thank you for my family”. Whatever I feel compelled to give thanks for that day, I say it. Setting my intentions for the day as well. “Today is going to be an amazing day”. “God you are in control”. “I will be mindful of every minute”. By doing this every morning, I feel like it sets a good energy to tackle the day ahead.
Make your bed - I used to wake up and leave my bed a mess. Sheet tangled lost underneath the comforter. The comforter half hanging off the side of the bed. Pillows on the floor. Then when it came time for bed i’d have to try to put the puzzle back together. Digging the sheet out from the tangled mess underneath the comforter. Get the comforter back in it’s plaace so my feet aren’t exposed. This unruly mess did not make for a peaceful winding down night. One day I was over at my sister-in-laws house and she was making her bed. When she was done she said, “bed made is a good start to the day”. For her, having a nicely done bed set the tone for her day. After that I started to spend a few minutes in the morning making my bed. Honestly, it really is a game changer. Although the bedroom may not be all that tidy but simply having a bed made changes the energy of the room. If you do this every morning, kudos to you. You are ahead of the game. If you don’t, try it. One day at a time until it becomes a habit. Don’t forget to give yourself some slack if you can’t get to it a day here and there.
Be present - You probably hear this phrase all the time. And as much as you would like to be present life just gets so hectic, right? I started to think about how the days, months, and years seem to fly by. Asking, why does it seem that way? What I realized is that I was not living each day with true appreciation for the precious 24 hours I was given. Instead, on Monday’s I was already looking ahead waiting for Friday to roll around. Not even thinking about Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. Are you guilty of this too? I started to change my mindset. I began by thinking about appreciating life, every moment, every task, and every day individually. Not to say there have been and will be days that you wish there was a reset button but, for the most part, remind yourself that today was an experience and you survived the challenge. Where ever you are in life remember; tomorrow is in the past, the future you can’t predict, all you have is the present. Take your time. Life is a journey not a marathon.
Love your body - Everybody and their mamma’s New Years resolution, getting in shape, eating right, and exercising. Beginning of January you basically elbowing people to get to the last available treadmill. By mid-January your speed walking to the treadmill. And by February you can choose from any treadmill you want. There are very few people that live to go to the gym. I am not one of them. Don’t compare or beat yourself up. It’s a struggle for me and a constant roller coaster to stay motivated. Same goes with eating healthy. If you struggle with either, find what is going to motivate YOU. Not what motivates Kim K or Susie Q across the street. Not everyone has the same idea of fitness. Not all fitness activities stay the same. Change your workouts, settings, actives. I’m not a fitness guru but I know that when I start slacking it’s because I am bored with my workout. So, I change it up. I found a really cool fitness app that works for me. SWEAT; Kayla Itsines Fitness. This app works for me because I don’t have to think about making up my own workout. The app has different workouts in a variety of levels and time lengths. Each challenge is twelve weeks long and it tracks your progress. SWEAT has maternity, strength training, yoga, or at home workouts. It also provides healthy recipes to follow. One thing I can say we all have in common about staying on track with health and fitness is how we feel, amazing! Can we all agree? Physical activity and eating healthy feels good. It improves your mood, confidence, releases stress and happy endorphins. Who wouldn’t want to feel like John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever on the dance floor? I practically walk in kick-step, popping my collar, winking and pointing when walking down the street when my body feels good. That’s how great I feel when I am on track. If you fall off the train tracks, forgive yourself and get back on. Don’t dwell on it.
Quarterly review: Last but not least, as you work through meeting your goals, have quarterly check-ups. Don’t wait until the end of 2019 to review what you accomplished and what you didn’t. Check in quarterly. See where you are with your goals, make changes, add new ones, scrap the ones that are no longer part of your personal growth. If you have lost track, reboot the goal back into action. Most importantly be honest with yourself. Hold yourself accountable.
May 2019 bring you great joy, extend grace to those around you, live one day at a time.