By Jessica Sepal
At this time of year we are constantly being bombarded with messages, advertisements and conversations regarding resolutions. So many of these are weight loss focused, involve a new fad diet or sadly take the enjoyment away from food.
We need to embrace a kinder and more realistic mindset when it comes to setting goals for the year ahead.
It’s all about creating positive habits, rituals and maybe even challenging ourselves a little.
Start small, don’t overwhelm yourself and forget the crazy diets. We have to start to think of the healthy life as a long term, forever situation.
Here are 10 non-diet related resolutions:
Make cooking at home a regular event.
This is the key to a healthy life and makes things so much more affordable too. Don’t expect to be the perfect cook or worry about whipping up fancy meals. Just cook simple, nourishing food that takes little time. Head to the Recipes section for plenty of 15-20 minute recipes.
Drink more water.
I know this one isn’t sexy but it is truly so important. Keep a large bottle of water on your desk at work or carry one in your bag.
Be kind to yourself.
You may not always get it right or master every skill and sometimes you may even fail, but give yourself credit for trying. Acknowledge the small wins, the everyday achievements and appreciate yourself for all the amazing things you do.
Be kind to others.
Often when we make resolutions we forget to think about the wellbeing of others. Smile at the people you walk past in the morning, call your loved ones, listen with an open mind and see how such simple acts can truly light someone up.
Eat the JSHealth way.
This means enjoying all foods in moderation and eating foods that make you feel GOOD. This also means including all the main food groups, no carb-phobia here. Stick to what works for you, not what works for someone else. Need some more guidance? See the image below for how to build a balanced plate.
Embrace the rest days or rest in general.
Stress is the root cause of many health issues, especially poor gut health. Our bodies need space to rest, recharge and recover. Allow your mind and muscles some time off – enjoy a nap, read a book, set boundaries with social media and prioritise quality sleep.
Try something new.
Try a dance class, paint a picture, try a new vegetable each week, explore a new beach, anything that spices things up a little. It’s very easy to stick to what is familiar but stepping outside of our comfort zone can be incredibly invigorating (and fun!).
Don’t remove foods or food groups, make healthy swaps instead.
Don’t overwhelm yourself by striving to have the ‘perfect diet’, it doesn’t exist and is not sustainable. It is important you do not feel deprived in any way for this to work long term! So, if you love your chocolate, go for dark chocolate. If you love your bread, go for a wholegrain option.
Move in a way that makes you happy.
Yoga, pilates, boxing, HIIT, barre class, boot camp, swimming, walking, tap dancing, whatever it is, make sure it’s something you enjoy. Instead of punishing your body, instead move in a way that makes you feel good. Remember – your body is your temple. It works hard to keep you alive and well. Now it’s time to love it back.
Make your bed every morning.
Sounds silly but it never fails to provide me with a sense of achievement. Start your day off right and by ticking off one small thing from your to-do list. Trust me on this one!