It’s that time of year again when we write a long list of resolutions that we hope to keep throughout the year and yet, barely 3 months into the year, the list ends up in the trash.
But still, we continue to write them anyway because deep down we really want a better life for ourselves.
THE 5 GOLDEN RULES OF HEALTHY LIVING
Rule Number One: Measure Up
The first step to great health is merely paying attention to it. It’s important to ensure you’re healthy by visiting the doctor for checkups, knowing key factors like your blood sugar and cholesterol levels and running tests when necessary.
But, most importantly you need to keep a close eye on how you look, feel and act every day.
If you want to improve your lifestyle, you need to be constantly mindful of whether the choices you are making are helping or hurting your well-being. Will another bar of chocolate help you or hurt your body? How about some bottles of harmless beer?
Making healthy choices is definitely going to be more beneficial to you whether it’s going to bed earlier or choosing a piece of fruit for dessert, rather than cake. These small steps can help you boost your health without having to call a doctor:
• Get yourself a better sleep pillow
• Go to bed before 10 pm
• Know your blood sugar and cholesterol levels
• Get rid of expired medicine from your medicine box
• Live as if your doctor was watching you
• Make a list of health screenings you should get and set up appointments
• Wear sunscreen every single day
• Remove the TV in your room
Rule Number Two: Move More
Technology has expanded minds by bringing the world to our doorsteps with TV, phones, and laptops. Unfortunately, it has also helped to spread the “sitting disease” that makes us age faster thanks to too much time sitting around in a body that is designed to move.
The good news is, you can reverse that with one simple act; move more. Leisure-time activities like walking, running, gardening, doing Yoga or even dancing count really big. Watch your health and energy transform when you resolve to do just a few of these:
• Walk, not drive if possible
• Take the stairs instead of the elevator to go up or down a few floors
• Stand when talking on the phone
• Spend at least four hours a week outdoors
• Get up and move during the commercials
• Ask your favorite neighbor to walk with you for 30 minutes
• Walk the dog instead of just letting him out
Rule Number Three: Eat Well
Never eat chocolate again? That’s one of those resolutions that set you up to fail. Somewhere, sometime, there’s going to be a piece of chocolate that finds its way to your mouth. And, in fact, there is going to be…
Eating for great health doesn’t mean depriving yourself of flavor and satisfaction. It means filling up on the most delicious and satisfying foods around. It means eating more fresh foods from farms and less from factories. Think organic this year and drink a lot of red tea to detoxify your system.
Add flavor, taste, and freshness to your meals but don’t overdo it. And, take the time to savor your food instead of rushing through meals. Use these tiny resolutions and watch yourself become healthy:
• Eat at least one piece of fruit every day
• Avoid eating after 9 pm
• Try at least one new recipe every month
• If you must eat between meals, choose fruits over sweets
• Let vegetables take up more space on your plate than grains or proteins
• Eat a salad every day
• Eat slowly
• Drink gallons of water each day
Rule Number 4: Spend well
Last year was a rough one for us all; money kept flying out of our bank accounts without control. This year, you have to do better. Watch what you spend your money on and remember to cut down on some expenses.
Is a new pair of designer shoes really necessary? Do you need to buy the orange version of your favourite shirt? I don’t think so! Cut your coat according to your cloth, this year. Bear these tips in mind to remain on track:
• Save 20% of your income every month
• Pay off debts gradually
• Buy only things you really need
• Create a budget a stick to it
• Have a retirement plan
• Invest wisely
Rule Number 5: Enjoy Life
This year, go ahead and load up on everything you love except sweets, of course. The big secret is that doing more of what you enjoy, having meaningful relationships, and maintaining a positive outlook all give your health a huge boost.
And just so you know, laughter, love, and doing things you find important or meaningful make life worth living. Maintain the balance between joy and positive living with these tips:
• Start planning your next vacation (I’m serious!)
• Say “hello” at least 10 times a day
• Clean and organize your closet each week
• Don’t say “NO” to that hot date
• Read a book or two each month
• Try volunteering once a month
• Listen to live music at least once a month
• Stop having the same old fights with your spouse
Have a wonderful year ahead and I hope you really try to improve your lifestyle this year. Just remember you’re in charge and don’t worry; you won’t be alone this time. I’ll be taking my own advice too!
What is the one health goal that you really want to achieve this year?