…to help you keep your New Year Resolutions
New Year’s Resolutions…Have you ever made them? Do you usually keep them? All too frequently, people make resolutions that only last a few weeks. I am going to try and share some advice on health and wellness that allows you to stick to your new regime, leaving you feeling healthier and happier long term!
First and foremost, it is important to recognise the connection between mental health and physical health. If you’re endeavouring to lose weight, it isn’t simply a matter of cutting calories and exercising more. What matters is a holistic approach where you’re tackling both your physical health and your mental health at the same time.
A great way to achieve this is to have a morning wellness routine. It does not need to be long, 5-10 minutes is sufficient, and it doesn’t even have to be overly energetic. Allowing yourself a few minutes of “you time” every morning can improve your whole day.
Start your morning routine with a moment of gratefulness, a deep sense of gratitude for all of the good in your life. These can be the same things each and every morning, or they can change. Once you find yourself in a state of gratitude, set an intention to stay in a positive mindset throughout your day, and know that you can draw yourself back to this positive mindset even when trivial annoyances arise. Once you’ve had a moment of gratitude, and your intention to stay positive is set for the day, allow your body to wake up physically with some gentle stretches. Anyone who has ever watched an animal wake up knows that it stretches in many different ways before proceeding with its day, and so should we. Aim to link your breath with your movements, inhaling as you sweep your arms overhead, exhaling as you forward fold. Short morning yoga routines can be found easily online.
Once a morning routine is well and truly set, any other goals that you wish to achieve will seem a lot easier. If your goal is weight loss, it can be very helpful to view your food as fuel instead of as something you eat just because “it tastes good”. You wouldn’t put garbage in the fuel tank of a sports car, so why should you put garbage inside your body? You also don’t need “fuel” right before going to bed, as your body is winding down, so aim to stop eating 3-4 hours before you sleep so that your body can focus on restoration and healing instead of digestion.
If you’re hoping to exercise more, find a type of exercise that you enjoy, be it yoga, swimming, walking, or running, as enjoyment will be key in continuing with it long-term.
If you’re hoping to find a deeper sense of calm and contentment, ensure you have outdoor time each day, as the healing powers of nature are profound.
So, in a nutshell, what do you need for overall health and wellness? It all boils down to a few simple principles that you can practice each day: a sense of gratitude, a positive mindset, an awareness of your breath and movement, a connection to nature, and an aim to fuel your body properly so that it can function well for you.
by Chantelle Dawson, founder of The Balance Rooms Yoga and Wellness Centre
11 Smiddy Hill, Pickering, North Yorkshire YO18 7AN Tel: 07490 535 001