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Monday, January 09, 2017

Simple Daily Habits to Transform Yourself in 2017

Not every New Year’s resolution needs to be out of reach.  In life, the smallest changes can make the greatest impact on your life and the lives of those around you. You don’t need to climb steep mountains or have the fattest paycheck to achieve the happiness of accomplishment. 

After all, a resolution is about improving yourself and your well-being. If you are going to go out there and train for that marathon, then good for you! Perhaps you’re going to commit to reading a new novel a month. No matter your resolution, there are simply daily habits that can help you transform your life in the New Year.

Find something about yourself that you love

When we think of resolutions, we think of change.  Change is good, but it is important to keep in touch with who you are and what you want to change.  When you think of your resolutions, ask yourself: “Why do I want to change this thing about myself?” Reflect upon it, and discover whether this is something you want for yourself or is it what other people or society expects of you.  Write a list of ten things you like about yourself.  You do not need to share it with anyone, but keep it in a safe place where you can revisit it when you need to.

Small Changes in Diet

Don’t be intimidated by the idea of a diet. Most people do not need to make an entirely drastic change in their daily food intake to remain healthy at first.  Take small steps in reducing certain things you eat, such as excess bread or artificial sugar. There are major benefits to small changes in your daily meals; cutting down on chocolate and other dairy products may help clear up your skin, while reducing your soda habit could result in much improved gut health. Truthfully, a large part of our health has to do with what we eat. Find a healthy balance for yourself. There are many diets out there, so find one that is reasonable and that you can stick to.  It may be wise to visit a nutritionist who can create a diet to fit your needs.  Take a diet one step at a time so that overtime your body will adjust and actually crave the healthy foods you need.

Get Active

Physical activity need not be overly strenuous.  A simple routine that involves movement of any kind is good for your body.  If, however, you seek to change your physical appearance, keep in mind that you’ll plenty of dedication and tenacity. Instead of going for something extreme, try an activity you will enjoy.  You don’t need to experience a lot of pain to get in shape. Some people find that yoga or weight training is right for them.  Just like with diet, you can rewire your brain to enjoy healthy exercise.  Or better yet, some people find that adjusting their body to fitness that they will find the inspiration to train for something more challenging like a backpacking trip.  Exercise is not just for your body—it’s vital for proper mental health. If you need to start with baby steps, consider investing in a Fitbit and learn to become more active in your everyday life.

Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Not everyone can afford a first-class trip to Europe or sign up for a safari in Zimbabwe, but you’ll be surprised at what you can do if you get out of your comfort zone.  Maybe that means just stepping off the beaten path and travelling to a different town.  If you are shy, maybe it is about overcoming your shyness to build relationships with others.  On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you have unhealthy relationships in your life, it may be time to step out of your comfort zone and distance yourself from toxic people.  Whichever path you choose, do something different to make 2017 a memorable year.

This is a guest blog entry.

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