The New Year is a great time to set new goals and wipe the proverbial slate clean, especially when it comes to your health.
For some, this involves a new exercise regime, a diet, or maybe even a little downtime that results in us spending more quality time with our nearest and dearest.
Whatever approach you take, there’s plenty of ways to embrace the New Year with a healthier outlook, as we show here…
Focus on gratitude
Being grateful is good for our health, especially in terms of our well-being. Being thankful for even the small things in our lives, such as a sunny day, a smiling stranger, or a polite cashier is proven to reduce depression and our stress levels, which in turn lowers blood pressure.
On top of this, counting our blessings is also said to slow down the aging process!
Make sleep a top priority
Sleep is incredibly important for our mental and physical wellbeing, but unfortunately, we don’t all get enough of it! From scrolling through our phones to mindlessly watching TV, before we know it, it has gone past midnight. The result?
An exhausted mind and body, which can lead to weight gain, strokes, and chronic illnesses such as diabetes. Try to turn technology off at least an hour before bed, and instead take a relaxing bath, listen to some soothing songs or read a book.
Up your fitness levels
You don’t have to go to the gym every morning, noon and night to up your fitness levels, but it does help to keep you engaged if you can commit to doing something.
Whether this is a weekly walk with friends, joining an evening running group, hiring a PT, or taking up a new sport – such as swimming, tennis, or hockey – there are plenty of ways to get fit in the New Year.
The important thing is to find a routine that works for you and to stick to it when you do.
Build social relationships
It’s easy to neglect our friends and family, especially in this day and age. From tight deadlines to hectic work schedules, it’s important to find time to fit in a visit to see your parents, spend quality time with your partner, or after school hours with your children.
Thankfully, there are many ways to make this work. Numerous studies have shown that those who have satisfying relationships with colleagues, friends, and family are much happier, tend to live longer, and have fewer health problems.
Embrace learning a new skill
Whether it’s learning a new language, picking up a paintbrush and becoming your own version of Picasso or signing up to music lessons, learning a new skill is not only exciting but can be beneficial to our health and wellbeing too.
Asides from taking our minds off work deadlines and hectic social commitments, learning a new skill also helps to improve our memory, as it gives our brains a regular workout.
Pack out your home with plants
A number of houseplants have air-purifying properties and can help to boost the quality of air in your home. Not only does this help you sleep, but it can also have a calming influence more generally.
There’s also plenty of options that require minimal care, allowing you to enjoy all of these benefits with the minimum of effort!
Look for ways you can brighten someone else’s life
Irrespective of where you live, there is bound to be a local charity in need of your services. Whether it’s cooking for the homeless, helping out at a local cat and dog shelter, or donating old clothes, books, and toys to a specific foundation, there are many ways you can brighten up someone else’s life.
Go at your own pace
Instead of going hell for leather in the New Year, take your time to tackle your goals. The less you rush them, the more you are likely to achieve. We already live in a fast-paced world, so New Year should be an opportunity to make time for ourselves and slow down.
From spa days to a calming round of golf or booking a holiday for some winter sun, take some time away from a hectic day-to-day routine and really feel the benefits.
Make your health a priority
It’s easy to forget to put our health first, especially when you have a family to look after and deadlines to meet. However, when we don’t, this is when we become susceptible to illness.
Whether it’s a medical check you’ve been putting off for a while, a health screening, or a vision exam, it’s important to keep yourself in tip-top shape. If you don’t, and you do become ill, you’re no use to anyone!
While we’re on this subject, it is a good idea to encourage your friends and family to do the same. In fact, why not book a family health check-up this New Year?