Happy New Year!
We are officially one week into 2018. This is about the time where goals, resolutions, and plans start falling though the cracks as we go back to school and work after the holidays. We’re all guilty of it. We want to workout, but now there’s less time. We want to eat healthy, but old patterns start creeping in on us.
The key to keeping new years resolutions and becoming an overall healthier person in 2018 is to transform your goals into habits.
As Aristotle put it, “We are what we repeatedly do; excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit”
Here are 8 healthy habits you can take on this new year that will make you unstoppable.
1. Eat More Fruits and Vegetables – I’m sure this is obvious, but if you don’t do anything else on this list, eating more fruits and vegetables will change your life. Aside from the fact that you can look better; eating more fruits and vegetables will increase your productivity levels, mood, and focus which in turn, will make everything else on this list much easier. It’s true that you are what you eat. Use your food choices to fuel your day.
2. Create a Morning and Night Routine – Routines are something humans create naturally, whether intentional or not. We do this in order to save energy for other things that require our attention and willpower. Create a healthy morning and night routine for yourself that sets you up for a successful day and a relaxing night. Then do it every day (or at least on most days.) A morning routine could look something like: wake up, set your bed, drink water, meditate, practice gratitude, stretch, etc. Everyone is different so figure out what is is that energizes you and relaxes you. Instead of scrolling through social media every morning and night, train yourself to engage in a routine crafted for the life you want to live.
3. Workout in the Morning – There’s a phrase from the best-selling self-help book called “Eat That Frog!” by Brian Tracy that talks about how in order to stop procrastinating, get the most daunting task done first! He says we should all “Eat that frog.” We all know we need to workout, but most of us tend to put it off until later. Doing that just sets yourself up to miss the workout. Get into the habit of getting it done in the morning, then you can go through the rest of the day knowing you’ve already won.
4. Practice Mindfulness – Instead of thinking about meditation as a task to complete, think about practicing mindfulness in everything you do. After all, that is the whole point of meditation anyways, right? To increase mindfulness. What I mean by this is try to ground yourself in whatever activity you are currently doing. This is easier said than done, but the truth is no matter how much you want to get done in a day, this moment right now is all you have. If your mind is always somewhere else, than you’re not really immersing yourself in the moment and everything in your life will always reflect that.
5. Put Yourself First – You cannot give to others if you haven’t given to yourself. When you constantly give without taking time to replenish, you create a void within yourself that needs to be filled, so you might find yourself endlessly grasping onto things or people. The problem with giving up parts of yourself is nobody or nothing can ever fill that void you have created by neglecting your basic human needs. Friends, family, and relationships are definitely meant to be prioritized, but it’s not selfish to put your health and happiness first. It’s an act of self-love.
6. Spend More Time Outside – Spending time in nature does wonders for health and happiness. However, on top of all the benefits, it’s a constant reminder of how human beings are not separate from the world, we are part of something bigger. Being trapped indoors all day makes it easy to get lost in our head. Stepping outside is like stepping outside of ourselves. We can see that our problems don’t really matter as much as we think they do.
7. Explore New Places – For many of us, we spend our days in the same town, surrounded by the same people with the same mindset. Traveling and exploring new places is important because it expands your mind by placing you out of your comfort zone. It forces you to grow and interact with unfamiliar surroundings. There is a whole world out there! How sad would it be to reach a certain age and come to the realization that you had not made time to explore new places?
8. Think Long Term – Adopting this mindset will help you prioritize and ultimately make you a happier and more stable person throughout your entire life. We live in a world filled with forms of temptation for instant gratification. We know what we want, and we want it now. Instead of always searching for things to make you happy in the moment, ask yourself what it is you want from life in general, then adjust each moment accordingly. Practice thinking of your life as a marathon, rather than a sprint. Ask yourself, “What is the cost?” and be honest with yourself. Doing this will help you resist self-destructive behaviors.
Now, I’m not saying that by integrating these habits into your daily life you will become a superhuman and never have a bad day. But you will become unstoppable by growing into a healthier and happier person, and you’ll probably surprise yourself at what you can achieve!