ut with the old and in with the new. January is the perfect month to regroup and set your intentions for the year ahead. Whether you are on team resolutions or not, here are some easy resolutions that will make this year your best yet.
Get your sleep
Have you ever seen a sleep-deprived toddler? They are a hot mess, and you are no different.
Lack of sleep leads to numerous health-related problems (mental, physical and emotional) so find a way to get the amount of rest you need to feel good during the day.
Not sure how much you need? The average adult needs between seven and nine hours of sleep per night . Try one week at seven hours each night, then if you feel you need more, increase it by 30 minutes for the next week and so on.
Eat healthy but don’t lose your mind
There are some seriously restrictive diets out there. Instead of jumping into a diet and going full force for one month, then caving and eating everything in sight for the next three months, make the decision to increase the amount of healthy options on your plate.
We all know that vegetables, fruit, and beans are good for you; they pack a lot of nutrients. Start there. Have healthy options on hand, within reach and already cut for easy serving. Try new fruit, and look up new vegetable and bean dishes for dinner to go along with everything else.
If completely restricting the food you enjoy sends you into an emotional spiral, just give yourself some slack and cut back on your unhealthy options instead. If you aren’t sure if you are meeting all of your nutrient requirements, try a multi-vitamin and speak to your doctor.
Drink more water
Staying hydrated helps your body to function and fills you up before a big meal (especially if it’s Taco Tuesday ;). Water is water, so whether you drink it cold, or hot with a slice of lemon, it’s all the same.
Not sure how much you drink in a day? Buy a 2L jug of water and fill it up to start. Check it at the end of the day.
Connect with your loved ones
This seems simple, but I’m not talking about sending your buddy a birthday wish on Facebook because you got a reminder. Reach out and make a personal connection, or re-connection.
A good friend of mine warmed my heart when she posted that she wanted to give away five of her favourite books for free. The catch was only a date to meet for tea. I never wished I lived in Vancouver more than when I saw that offer.
Revisit an old hobby
When life gets to the point where we are jumping from fire to fire, we often let our hobbies go. What once centered us and brought us peace is shelved for what we deem are priorities. When the truth is, not all of our priorities are really priorities. Some of them aren’t even important at all. We just give them more weight because they seem to scream louder in our heads.
Revisit something that brings you joy this year, and make it a priority.
Learn a new skill
What have you always wanted to do? Whether you want to learn a new language, design a website, do a handstand or learn to swim — this is your year.
Write a letter
Can you imagine how amazing it would feel to get a hand-written letter from a friend? Pick a friend or family member and sit down and write them a letter. Reconnect with your bad-ass self who used to take the time to write a letter, address it and mail it — with a postage stamp (for anyone under 25, you can buy a stamp at the post office).
Or better yet, write one letter each month and freak 12 people out in 2016.
Yes, we don’t have a lot of free time any more, but some new studies are beginning to link volunteering with improved mental and physical health . Not only will you be nurturing your sense of purpose, you will also be helping someone out.
Whether you have time every week, once a month, or just some spare time coming up, there is always someone out there who would be grateful for the help.
In a connected world where it is so easy to champion a new outrage every day, take the time to laugh.
Do you remember how you feel after a good laugh? The kind that leaves you out of breath, in tears and your stomach sore? There are just too many benefits of laughing to list here .
Consciously make time to laugh. Choose a comedy over a drama, see a comedy show or visit with that friend that always makes you laugh. Spending time with those who turn your frown upside down is good for your outlook and well being.
Need a good laugh? Laugh along with these news bloopers.
The internet is a fabulous place but for your own well being, decrease the amount of time you spend online. You don’t need to know every tragedy in the world every minute of the day.
You also don’t always need to see that someone in your Facebook feed is upset about something, bragging about something, going on vacation, or just flat out pretending that their life is perfect.
Try removing the Facebook app from your phone and check it once at the beginning or end of the day. You also have the option to unfollow the friends in your feed instead of unfriending them. When you unfollow, you are still friends, you’ve just requested to not see everything they post and they don’t know.