How to make your health a priority in 2020
It’s that time again – don’t we all feel like we just turned our head and moments later the end of the year was right in front of us!? It can’t be just me!
In any case, one thing is for sure – there will be tons of resolutions made and not too many of them kept. No shaming, that’s just how it goes. Sometimes we overreach and set unrealistic goals for ourselves, sometimes we get dragged down by life events, and sometimes our will is just not quite up for the challenge.
And yet, in the face of not just a new year, but a whole new decade ahead of us, we can’t help but feel compelled to make some promises to ourselves and set some goals.
If you feel like you’ve been neglecting your well-being, prioritizing everyone else while putting your own needs on hold, maybe it’s time to revise that and put your priorities straight.
Obviously I can’t say it better than Antoine de Saint-Exupéry – what distinguishes a goal from a simple wish is the plan behind it.
Another thing that doesn’t get mentioned enough is that motivation comes and goes. There’s no one who’s highly motivated all the time. What keeps people on track is a conscious effort, building habits and reminding themselves WHY they do what they do. Of course, sometimes a person isn’t ready to commit until they’ve reached the decision themselves. Until the pain and discomfort of living the way they do are great enough. Until a change is so pressing that it’s the only option. You don’t need to wait to reach that point but if you did, know that it’s never too late for a change.
So how do you start? What steps do you need to take to make sure you don’t fall off the wagon?
1. Know your WHY
It’s not hard to find reasons to focus on your own health. After all, that’s what we should all do – always. But if you still need to justify it, remember that you’re not just doing it for yourself, you’re doing it for your family and close ones as well. The healthier you are, the better your quality of life, the more you can contribute to the well-being of the people around you. Not to mention, you’re setting a good example.
2. Take smaller steps and create daily habits
My best advice is to sit down and make a realistic list of what are some attainable steps and measures you can take daily, in order to improve your wellbeing. Write them down and go through the list every day. You can start really small and expand the list as time goes and you gain more confidence.
- Make sure you sleep no less than 6.5 hours every night;
- Exercise at least 2x a week;
- Create a morning routine;
- Start meal prepping;
- Work on your mobility, stretch daily, try out yoga;
- Reduce screen time, e.g. no phone/pc after 8 pm;
- No take-outs, cook your own food;
3. Learn to say “no”
We live in a stress-ridden world and unfortunately, it can wreak havoc on mind and body. It’s your job to protect your mental health and prioritize it as much as your physical health. With that in mind, learn to value your time and effort and don’t be the person who always says “yes”. Establish boundaries and stick to them. I know this is easier said than done, that’s why I will again encourage you to write your goals down and keep revising them daily.
Another thing that I’ve found extremely beneficial for the mind is, as I’ve mentioned before, meditation. Although it takes time to fully appreciate it, practicing it is well worth it.
I’m leaving this list open and hoping that you’ll contribute to it in the comments! 🙂 Don’t be shy, share your goals and your mechanisms for achieving them, let’s exchange wisdom!