New year aspirations can lead you feeling overwhelmed. Here are a few tips to keep you refreshed, balanced, and healthy year round. Happy 2018!
1. Allow for a mindful pause.
Our thoughts, emotions, and running stories are interconnected. Setting the intention for a mindful pause centers the mind to be in the present moment and calms the nervous system.
2. Engage in healthy eating habits.
The holidays are the worst and the best for a plethora of unhealthy snacks and meals. It starts with the leftover bowls of Halloween candy, then the Thanksgiving feast and pumpkin pies, and seasonal holiday flavorings of mint chocolate and apple spice treats often packed with empty calories and high amounts of sugar. Unfortunately, these sugary foods temporarily spike our glucose levels, lead us to crash, and we are left managing a foggy brain. Engage in healthy eating habits to avoid overdosing on sugary foods, bloating, digestive issues, and excess weight gain. So when that office buddy, friend, or family member offers you a second cookie, reflect on whether you are full. And if you are, you have your answer. Your mind, body, and digestive tract will thank you.
3. Reduce your carbon footprint.
It’s the time to make a difference and give back to our amazing planet. Opt for giving life to the planet and reduce your new year consumption. Be grateful for all that you have. Showing gratitude for others is good for your health. Check out these websites to give to the less fortunate and to our planet while decreasing your carbon footprint. You may want to have them on a monthly auto payment for your pledge of giving.
Gift of life when giving to charity:
Plant a tree in the national forest:
4. Power down and tune in.
Social media is a fabulous way to stay connected with your loved ones in the new year, but the constant feed and interruptions can leave you scattered and drained. More and more studies are showing that phone addiction and overuse cause activity changes and imbalances in the brain and increase depression. Create a ritual during your day to have a no device time you while you engage in actual moments. Savor a sunrise or sunset, cook a meal, take a walk, pet your cat or dog, or read a good book and engage your imagination.
5. Relax with lavender or rosemary.
Our nerves can get fried and sometimes it’s challenging to relax. Scientific studies show that inhaling lavender or rosemary reduces stress by decreasing cortisol (the stress hormone) levels in the body. When you are feeling burnt out and out of sorts elect to calm with aromatherapy.
Tuning into the simple pleasures in life can lead to a calmer and more joyous days. I wish you balance, joy, and peace. May the New Year be all that you imagine.
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Jean M. Twenge, Thomas E. Joiner, Megan L. Rogers, Gabrielle N. Martin. Increases in Depressive Symptoms, Suicide-Related Outcomes, and Suicide Rates Among U.S. Adolescents After 2010 and Links to Increased New Media Screen Time. Clinical Psychological Science. 2017 Nov 14. https://doi.org/10.1177/2167702617723376
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