The start of a new year means a blank slate for many. And while the fireworks and the alcohol are fun in the moment, there’s a reason for the celebration. A new year means we all have the capacity to change ourselves for the better.
For a lot of people, that capacity for change means vowing to take better care of our bodies. But rarely do these vows and resolutions last longer than January. If you’re looking to permanently change the way you approach health, then it is time to form some healthy habits.
If you’re looking to toss out your old ways in favor of a brighter and healthier you, we have 7 habits you should pick up in order to become your best self:
1. Go to bed on time
Most of us have a predetermined time to rise when we need to get out of our beds and prepare for work or other obligations throughout the day. However, most people lack a proper bedtime, and you’d be surprised at the benefits of ensuring a constant time for you to shut out the lights.
The science is clear. Training your body to sleep at a certain time will help you realign your circadian rhythm and get a better night’s rest.
Think of it this way. You spend a third of your life asleep. The smarter you are about that third, the healthier and brighter you’ll feel during the hours you’re awake.
2. Cut down on the fast food
It can be too easy to choose fast food during lunch breaks, road trips, or on days when we just don’t feel like cooking. But while that hamburger may taste great in the moment, it’s no secret that an over-reliance on fast food and processed foods will keep you feeling bloated and lethargic.
Try simple tactics to keep you out of the drive-thru lane, like packing a lunch for work, or keeping snacks on hand. And whatever you eat, be sure to check the ingredients. The more preservatives and chemicals in your food, the worse you can expect to feel after consumption.
3. Get out into nature.
If you’re tired and weary of the view from your office or job, put aside a few hours to go for a walk in nature. A recent study has shown that spending less time at the desk and more time in the wild can reduce your stress, improve cardiovascular health, and put you in a healthier frame of mind.
Not everyone has the time or access to National Parks or trails, but no matter where you are, there’s probably a local spot where you can turn off the cell phone and enjoy the natural beauty around you.
Meditation is a foreign idea to many—and many think of Indian sages and third eyes when thinking of the concept.
Meditation is not “mumbo-jumbo” but rather is a way for you to gain perspective on your inner being and refocus your life. And rather than a unproven and strange idea, meditation is actually a scientifically proven phenomenon.
Taking just ten minutes each day to practice meditation will enable you to be fully present and aware during the rest of your daily routine. Your family, friends, and mind will thank you for entering the right headspace each day.
5. Drink more water
Through your morning coffee, afternoon soda, and evening beer or wine, it can be easy for you to feel as if you’re getting enough fluids throughout the day. But all that caffeine and alcohol may not add up to the recommended eight cups of water your body needs on a daily basis.
Work to eliminate sweet drinks such as soda from your daily routine, and replace them with a glass of cold water. You’ll be saving money, as well as helping to make sure your body is hydrated and taken care of.
6. Get smart about your health
Don’t let old routines and habits prevent you from saving time and money. A part of maintaining a healthy body and mind is by reducing stress, so it may be time for you to look at your current health regimen and find ways to get smart about how you approach your body.
Ask your doctor about the value of your current prescriptions, and ensure that you’re taking the optimal dose you need. Consider switching to generics or over-the-counter medication, or look into a SingleCare pharmacy discount card to save up to 80% on prescription medication.
Whatever you choose to do, remember to ask questions and seek help from professionals. The less time and money you waste, the better chance you have to be more productive and healthier you in the new year.
Many people view gym memberships as a waste of money, or only seek out the gym for the first few weeks of the year. However, a few weeks on the treadmill won’t have long-term effects on your health.
In order to keep your body strong and vibrant, develop a fitness routine and stick to it. Remember that old habits die hard, and it may take several weeks of soreness and stiffness to settle into the new normal. And if your budget is tight, consider finding a bodyweight exercise routine or utilizing cardio-only exercises instead. At the end of the day, there’s no excuse for skipping out on training your body.
With the promise of a new year, you can let the past die and begin again with a clean slate and a new outlook. Don’t wait until your doctor reminds you about your health. Rather, you should take proactive steps now to form better healthier habits and improve your well-being.
Whether that means taking up exercise and cardio, going to bed on time, or even taking a closer look at your prescription cost, be sure to develop healthy habits and finish this year stronger than the last.
Soon, living a brighter and healthier life will be just another aspect of your daily routine.
Have you adopted any new good habits in 2018? Have you been able to keep a new years resolution? Leave us a comment in the section below.