There’s no way to sugarcoat it: the last few years have been tough. We all deserve a fresh start, so here are some simple ways to bounce back, stay healthy, hydrated, and feel like yourself again. Small changes can make a big difference!
7 Tips on Forming Healthy Habits for the New Year and Beyond
1. Get Lost In a Good Book
You can always escape the craziness that comes with this time of year by cracking open a book. Fiction can whisk you away to a fantasy land you could never dream up on your own. There are endless genres of literature to suit your every need. Instructional books can teach you something new and exciting. And no one’s judging if you flip through something from the self-help section. Don't know where to start? Here are the 100 books you should read in your lifetime, according to Amazon. If thumbing through pages isn’t your thing, or if life tends to get hectic for you during the holiday season, scour the digital shelves of audiobooks. No matter how they’re consumed, books make for a great getaway.
2. Make Sure You Get Enough Sleep
If anyone deserves some R & R, it’s you. Getting at least 7 hours of sleep every night is a simple method of self-care that can work wonders on your mood, your immune system, and even your productivity, not to mention your general well-being. While we’re no sleep experts, we do know little things like weighted blankets, melatonin, chamomile tea, and sleep masks can help you get some satisfying shut-eye. Make the extra effort to wake up on the right side of the bed this year.
3. Meditation for Mental Health
What do LeBron, Oprah, and Bill Gates have in common? They all practice meditation. Remember when meditation felt like some sort of strange magic reserved for monks, mystics, and hippies? Now it’s mainstream, and its health benefits, like lowered blood pressure and improved mental health, have been well documented. You don’t have to light candles, burn sage, or shave your head to reap the rewards. Instead, easily get started by downloading an app on your phone. Headspace and Calm are two popular options that teach you how to meditate from the comfort of your home.
4. Healthy Eating for a Healthier You
Does anyone else feel like they’ve been living off of fast food and TV dinners? Cooking can help wean you off of takeout. You don’t have to go all Bobby Flay to toss together a reasonably healthy dish. Pick up some whole food ingredients (fruits, veggies, whole grains, etc.) to prepare healthy food that leaves you feeling good afterward, which also has the added benefit of lowering your risk of heart disease. You might even find the kitchen rewarding, fulfilling, and — dare we say it — fun. Cooking is not the only way to achieve healthy eating though. If you want to make healthy eating part of your healthy lifestyle without doing the work (or dedicating the time), there are more than enough meal delivery services out there that are better for you than the drive-through.
5. Exercise Routine for Your Mind
There is already so much emphasis on physical exercise when it comes to wellness, but how about mental exercise? Exercise your creative muscles by giving drawing a go. Use gardening as an excuse to get some fresh air. Don’t forget - it’s never too late to pick up an instrument. Maybe even consider learning a new language to get ready for that next trip you’ve been daydreaming about. The mental stimulation is certainly a perk, but so is the opportunity to get some socialization, whether it’s with an instructor or a group. If you prefer to stay at home, there are also plenty of virtual options out there, like starting your own podcast. Plus, having a new hobby to showcase can give your self-confidence and self-esteem a major lift.
6. Drink the Good Stuff
We’re not talking about top-shelf liquor. Alcohol, soda, and sugary drinks do your body more harm than good. The best investment you can make in your overall health is water: Drinking water can help you lose weight, feel great, and perform better. But it’s not as simple as turning on the tap and tossing back a glass. Tap water is often brimming with chemicals linked to cancer, bone disease, reproductive problems, and more concerning healthcare issues. First things first: Invest in a powerful water filter, so you know your glass of water is clean. Then have at it.
7. Sweating Your Way to a Healthy Lifestyle
Setting goals for weight loss, or maintaining your ideal body weight, is an excellent way to combat the weight gain many of us saw while cooped up. Some gyms are still adjusting to the changes the pandemic brought, while others have closed their doors for good. Either way, you might not be so keen on rushing back to the gym atmosphere. Fitness streaming services exploded during COVID-19, several studios started streaming free classes on social media, and YouTube is always a gold mine for pre-recorded exercise routines. If you’re searching for physical activity to meet your health goals, you don’t even have to leave the house. There’s something for everyone and every budget. All you have to do is press play.
Small Steps to Stay Healthy in the New Year
Here’s a quick summary of the seven small steps you may want to add to your New Year’s resolutions:
Relax with a good book.
Get enough sleep.
Give meditation a try.
Discover a new hobby.
Drink clean water.
Work out, on-demand.
Cheers to a New Year:
We all get to start the new year with a clean slate. No matter what happens next, know you can always count on Clearly Filtered water filters for clean water. Like you, we’re not going anywhere.
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4. 12 Science-Based Benefits of Meditation https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/12-benefits-of-meditation
5. Can water help you lose weight? https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322296
6. Morris R. D. (1995). Drinking water and cancer. Environ Health Perspect, 103(Suppl 8): 225–231.
8. The best at-home workout streaming services to try during COVID-19 https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/16/best-home-workout-streaming-services-to-try-during-covid-19-pandemic.html