I hope you take some time to really think about each of these topics and commit to making this your best year ever! This list is much more than just adding in more nutrient dense foods to your diet, or getting to the gym 5 days a week. I will cover 10 topics to ensure that you have a well-rounded and amazing 2019!
Here's to fantastic health,
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit."
if you want to make 2019 your best year yet, then you need to plan for it! You need to have a solid plan, that is written down (using SMART planning for your goals) so you actually know what it is that you want.
The acronym SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic/Relevant, and Timely.
So take some time right now, or in the next 24 hours to grab a notebook, pen and day planner and write down what you want to achieve in the next year.
Ask yourself these questions: What do I want to achieve in my career? In my relationships? With my fitness? What do I want our of my spiritual practice, or how can I start something meaningful to me? What do I need to do to make these goals happen? Who do I need help or support from? Who can I help and support? How will I feel achieving these goals? When do I want to achieve these goals by?
Break down your big goals into smaller chunks and write deadlines in your day planner, this will make the goal feel more attainable if you see it broken down into smaller sections.
Think about your year goal, and then break it down into quarterly goals. then monthly, and then weekly. This will really help you stay on track.
Dr. Gail Matthews, a psychology professor, found you are 42% more likely to reach your goals if you write them down. So get those goals into your notebook!
"Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment."
2. Fuel Your Body You will never have the best year of your life if you aren't feeling your best!
Read that again.
The food that you eat literally becomes YOU. If you have been feeding your body garbage then you will feel like garbage.
Make a commitment to eat healthier in 2019. Small changes create big results. And I am not talking about the scale, I am referring to how you will feel! This doesn't mean you have to tell yourself you can't have the cookie, or the glass of wine, etc. Instead, take your attention to filling your plate with a variety of whole foods all day long, and if you have a craving for something, listen to your body. Cravings aren't bad, they are a signal to check in. (There are multiple reasons we have cravings and it's important to recognize why we have them and what to do about them.)
Over time you may find your tastes alter and you may not have as many cravings once you start eating more whole foods and hydrate!!
A healthy outside starts from the inside.
Women! Let's talk self-care... Why is it so easy for us to spend all day taking care of everyone else but ourselves?
Let's make a decision to make our needs a priority. It's not selfish. It's fair!
We deserve the same loving attention we give to our family. We are all guilty of it, so let's make a commitment to add in daily, weekly, and monthly self-care rituals or practices to our routines.
Self-care practices might include:
Making sleep (good quality sleep) a priority Brushing your teeth (x2), flossing, tongue scraping (also helps with cravings) Dry body brushing massages (and other health appointments) walking meditation journaling/practicing gratitude movement mindful eating (while sitting down, without any, or minimal, distractions) reading connecting with friends and family
4. Moving your body
This is the year where you commit to moving your body in a way that feels right to you. Do it as many times as you can every week!
We all know the benefits of exercise, so I won't go into that here. But I do encourage you to take some time and try out different classes, gyms, activities and do a combination of your favourite each week.
walking running yoga (check out my youtube channel if you are looking for something you can do at home) soccer group fitness classes (so many options!! Try them all!) rowing
This is a great chance to connect with a friend, go together to a class! or you may find you like to go solo - running is meditation to me!
It's not always easy, but you will always feel better after some movement.
Take care of your body. It's the only home you have.
Meditation is really mainstream now, but you still might be hesitant to try it.
Sometimes if we are unsure about something, it can be a big barrier to trying it out. But meditation doesn't need to be scary or hard. You literally could do it right now if you stop reading this, close your eyes and take 10 or more deep breaths.
Do it now!
See? Not scary. Now, like all things, start small, and when you feel ready, add on some time.
Many people think you can't meditate if you have thoughts come into your head. That isn't true, we are human, we are going to have thoughts. The trick is to just acknowledge the thought, and let it go. You could even silently say that to yourself - "Let it go" or inhale "let", exhale "go".
There are so many mediation apps out there these days (calm, meditation app, mindfulness timer pro, etc), you could do a guided mediation, or have a fancy timer. Try it out and see what works!
6. Nurture your relationships
Make it a priority to spend time with those that are important to you.
Set regular date nights for you and your spouse. Spend time with your family. Plan coffee or another outing with your friends.
We need connection and it always feels so good spending quality time with those you love.
Take 2 minutes right now, and send a message, or give someone a call and make plans to get together. And don't do it just this once, schedule it in your calendar to spend time with those who mean the most to you each month.
Most people work Monday-Friday, 8-5. That is a lot of your time spent wasted if you aren't enjoying the work you do, or the people you work with.
These are things you can change!
If you are not happy with where you work, start looking for a new job! Or maybe you enjoy the work you do, but the people around you are bringing you down? Find a way to spend less time with them, or consider talking to your boss about options.
The answer is always no unless you ask.
8. Continue Learning
Most days I wish I could lock myself away and read for hours, or research something uninterrupted.
There is no shortage of information out there.
Find what you are passionate about and spend time learning about it.
Take a class
Listen to audio
Start a note in your phone of all the books you want to read this year (and add it to your plan so it actually gets done). Research classes in your area if you want to learn a new skill Youtube - just don't get sidetracked - focus on what you actually want to learn about!
By the end of the year, you could have read 12 new books, or learned a new skill. Don't just say you want to learn something new this year, actually set some time aside and do it!
9. Give Back
We just had Christmas so we all know how good it feels to give.
You don't need to have a lot of money to get it on this, any amount helps and gives you that good feeling.
And if you can't afford to give money right now, give time.
Find a cause that is near and dear to you and donate in some way.
Maybe you decide to donate a small amount each month, or maybe you want to do it every few months, or once a year. Figure out what is best for you and follow through by adding it to your planner.
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.
The final tip to make 2019 your best year yet is another self-care practice that is becoming much more mainstream - practicing gratitude.
There are different ways to do it, but I recommend writing your list in a journal either every night, or every morning.
You could make a goal to write down 5 things that you are grateful for from the day, and do it for two weeks, then check in with yourself and see how you are feeling. If you enjoy it, then continue the practice daily.
There are many studies done that show the positive effects of practicing gratitude, so give it a try if you aren't already doing it!
Another thing I recommend is spending a few minutes writing down as many things as you can think of that you are grateful for, or that you accomplished in 2018.
If you show gratitude for the amazing things that happen to you, more great things will come your way.
If this is all very new to you, then following even just a few of these steps will ensure that you will have a great year ahead.
Remember, the key to lasting results with any goal is to plan, schedule it in, and make small steps in that direction. Those small steps compounded over time will lead to massive results!