The stress of making New Year’s resolutions alone may cause a decline in health. According to the American Psychological Association, stress itself is linked to the six leading causes of death: heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, liver cirrhosis and suicide.
You probably tell yourself the same thing every January. Make a resolution. Lose. Drop. Change. Count calories. Exercise every day. Stop smoking.
Ultimately, you want to be a better version of yourself. Unfortunately, what you’re really doing is telling yourself you aren’t good enough your current state, and that once again, it’s time to fight against yourself, punish yourself and beat yourself up over all those so called “bad habits.”
But what if this year is different?
What if this year, you ease into 2017 with some small shifts towards a better version of you, working with your body and understanding what it needs in order to improve? It’s a lot better than the alternative most take: disregarding your body’s needs and pushing for too much change at one time. This year, you could be You 2.0, but without the drastic change in every aspect of your life.
Here are some ways to begin:
- You can still have coffee, but drink water before you drink coffee.
- You can still relax after work, but get up just 10 minutes earlier in the mornings to turn on a free 10-minute workout on YouTube.
- You can still eat carbs, but phase out the processed and opt for natural, like vegetables, potatoes, oats, rice, berries.
- You can go to bed half an hour earlier, and that may be all you shift at first.
- You can add more protein into each meal but still order out.
- You might not be ready to embark on exercise, so instead, you park farther away with every errand you run.
- You can add a five-minute mediation into your day (see the video below!). You don’t have to have a Juvo Board, though we do recommend sitting on an incline to reduce the strain on your back.
- You can limit time on social media to have more time with family in the evening.
- You can track your calories with a calorie counter to become more mindful, yet not change any foods at first.
- You can ease into not smoking by replacing one cigarette with five-minute walk for a while, then continually decrease your smoking from there.
This year, remember that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing when it comes to self-improvement; it just needs a little improvement over time. Small shifts will yield big results over time. By listening to your body, instead of fighting against it, you will naturally lower the stress finally be a happier, healthier version of yourself.