New Year’s Resolutions last longer than January

We've all been there. The anti-climax that the festive season is now over. The Christmas treats have been consumed, Santa has nibbled at our savings, and somewhere in between December and New Year’s Eve, we will all have discussed a resolution or two. So, what could it be this year?

The truth is, most of us are vulnerable to doing the same thing we do most Januarys: set some goals we planned in December (or maybe even earlier) and by the time we're reading this post, we may have already forgotten. Or, somewhere thereabouts! On the other hand, many people do make one and confidently stick to them. Resolutions are broken down into planning to exercise more regularly, to spending more time with our families or giving up bad habits we seem to find ourselves unconsciously falling into.

Planning resolutions in the first place, usually mean imposing limits on ourselves. Setting strict limits (e.g., I plan to go and exercise twice a week), only increases the risk of temptation to “Let’s start properly next week” begins to kick in. Repeating failure over the start of the New Year will only lead us to put it off again to the following year just because January 2019 didn’t go to plan. This solution is what I like to call a “planning fallacy!”.

We should open our minds to learn that maybe, not making resolutions, may lead to a healthier and happier new year. However, don’t get me wrong! If you do make a new year’s resolution, I have a few suggestions, to give ourselves the best chance of achieving them!

I think to start, most importantly, take your time and have a good brainstorm about how you vision your 2020. Remember, there are 12 months in a year, not just the one in January. Visualise what motivates you in your day to day life currently. Let me try to help you with three simple factors that I believe can drive nearly each and everyone one of us to stay healthy.

1. Autonomy – Our desire to direct our own lives.
2. Mastery – Our urge to get better at stuff and make a change.
3. Purpose – The feeling and intention that we can make a difference in the world.

Secondly, set goals! (not resolutions!) Goals are what takes us forward in life, “they are the oxygen to our dreams” as they say. Goals are the first steps you take in any journey and have the potential to also be our last. Plan goals not just for now, but for the next three months, the summer, or even next Christmas. Seems a long way away, right? But, they’re not. By setting these goals, you give yourself the opportunity to focus for the whole year. ‘Focus’ also allows you to measure your progress, which means staying motivated to achieve your goals. Motivation leads you to remain locked in and undistracted along your 2020 journey.

For me, getting outside and breathing in the fresh air, only ignites me to not to get trapped indoors. Don’t get locked in your house procrastinating about all the plans you have made but have yet to “actually” start them. Instead, get active, get outside, and be healthy. And it costs nothing!

This brings me onto my next bit of advice, I am a true believer in making sure that we consume a healthy amount of Vitamin D whilst we tackle these cold winter months. Vitamin D is often referred to as “the sunshine vitamin” because the sun is one of the best sources of this nutrient. Sun-derived vitamin D may circulate for twice as long as vitamin D from food or supplements Our bodies must have vitamin D to absorb calcium and promote bone growth. Vitamin D can be consumed in the following ways –

• Oily fish and seafood such as – Tuna, Mackerel, Oysters, Shrimp, Sardines, Anchovies. Many of these foods are also rich in heart a-healthy omega – 3 fatty acids.
• Include egg yolks in your diet.
• Eat fortified foods such as – cow’s milk, plant-based milk alternatives like soy, almond, and hemp milk, orange juice, ready-to-eat cereals.
• Alternatively, take a supplement. Nearly all supermarkets will sell vitamin D supplements.

I hope you guys enjoyed my New Year’s resolution health tips and can maybe include one health tip into your 2020 year!

Happy New year x

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