New Year’s is one of the greatest motivators to turn a new leaf, break bad habits, form better ones and take a moment to prioritize your goals for the next 12 months. Whatever you call them—resolutions, plans, dreams, hopes—the most important thing is to keep it simple and realistic. Most give up on their New Year’s resolutions because they’re impractical and too hard to accomplish, quickly ending in burnout. For instance, someone who never works out committing to working out 6 days a week, every single week. Though that kind of determination is admirable, it will be easier to stick to your plan if you can easily digest it. Check out the simple suggestions below to help you achieve your goals one step at a time.
How To Achieve Your New Year’s Resolutions in 2017
1. Keep a food journal
If your goal is to lose weight this year, start with a simple food journal. Take a couple minutes after every meal or before bed to write down everything you put in your body that day and how it made you feel. Be honest with yourself and don’t judge or editorialize. Oftentimes, this small act makes you more aware of the mindless snacking you do in the afternoon, or that dairy might be making you feel tired, and you’ll naturally start to eat and feel better.
2. Start meditating
Less stress, better sleep, reduction in chronic pain, weight management, lower blood pressure—the benefits of meditation are too good to pass up. Just a few minutes a day is enough to feel the benefits of meditation on both your mind and body. To begin your practice, consciously quiet your mind, relax your body and focus on your breath. Do this for 5 minutes 5-7 days a week, then over the course of several weeks, slowly add more time until you reach 20 minutes every session. Letting go of thought is more difficult than it sounds, so if you’re having trouble, there are many guided meditations available through apps and online to help.
3. Eat more veggies
Adding more vegetables to your diet is one of the best ways to get fiber, essential vitamins and minerals, and whittle down your waist at the same time. For every meal, even breakfast, make sure you’re getting in at least one serving of non-starchy veggies. This simple hack will help keep you full longer and naturally make your meals lower in calories and carbs. Sneak some leafy greens into your morning smoothie. Add 2 heaping cups of chopped raw veggies to your quinoa salad at lunch. And keep a big batch of mixed roasted veggies on hand to add to bowls of Ancient Harvest POW!™ Pasta at dinner.
4. Make time for you
Your emotional and mental wellness are just as important as your physical wellness. So make more time for YOU this year. Carving out some special you-on-you time every day, or at least every week, can help you slow down and decompress so you don’t stretch yourself too thin, or find yourself snapping at friends and coworkers. Take a bath with a glass of wine and classical music. Go on a reading bender on a lazy Saturday afternoon. Take yourself out to a fancy dinner. See a movie in theaters with tons of popcorn and chocolate. This small, dedicated act of self-love will re-energize you with long-lasting effects.