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6 Small Steps Toward Holistic Health


Do you know one of the biggest reasons people give up on their New Year's "resolutions"? It's not that they aren't motivated to make the change, or they wouldn't have set that goal for themselves in the first place. It's that they get overwhelmed with too much change all at once.


We've all been there: January 1st rolls around and you've decided you want to change your life. Incredible! You're excited to upgrade every aspect of your life and start the year off on a strong note by setting big goals for yourself. You went from fast food and Netflix binging to meal-prepping healthy lunches, running 3 miles every morning, sipping on green juices, and keeping the house unusually clean, plus a number of other things. You're killing it! Until you hit February and you're completely burnt out, so you start to cut yourself a little slack on some of your goals. For example, maybe you decide to skip your morning run to get a little bit of extra rest today (because you've been working so hard at all your goals, you deserve it... right?), convincing yourself you'll go after work. 5 pm hits, you're exhausted from a long day at the office and it's dark out. Do you really want to run in the dark? Of course not. You'll call today a rest day and focus on one of the 27 other goals you've set for yourself. What happens tomorrow? You guessed it. You find it too easy to make another excuse, and the habits just keep falling off the wagon one by one until you're back on the couch wondering why you can't seem to follow through with the goals you set for yourself.


You get my point, right? Too often, people set these grandiose goals for themselves at the beginning of the year, with all of the right intentions of course, but for one reason or another, they just can't seem to make them stick. So, what's the solution?


Start small. By beginning with small goals, you're essentially exercising your confidence and self-trust to handle the bigger goals down the road. Wellness is not a destination, and it is certainly no race. Wellness is a lifelong journey, and your goal should be to enjoy it as much as possible.


If you are someone who is just starting out on their health and wellness journey, here are six of my absolute favorite starting goals. This is not a recommendation to adapt all six habits at once, or to choose any of them at all, really. These are simply suggestions. If none of them resonate you or your journey, come up with some of your own. The goal here is to inspire you to make one teeny tiny step toward the type of person you want to become, and the only person who can map out that journey is yourself.


 

1. Drink more water.

This one is just too simple and easy not to mention, and it is SO beneficial. We all know we're supposed to be drinking a lot of water every day, right? Still, for some reason, over half of adults do not drink enough water to support their bodies. As a very general guideline, you should be aiming to drink at least half of your body's weight (in ounces) of water each day. For example, for someone who weighs 160 pounds, their goal would be to drink 80 ounces of water per day. Again, this is just a general rule of thumb. This number can change based on things like activity level throughout the day and nutrients consumed, but this is a good formula to start calculating with.


Helpful Tip: carry a water bottle with you wherever you go! It is usually not too hard to find a place to fill up, and if you have it on hand, you're way more likely to drink it.


2. Aim to walk 10 minutes each day.

The benefits of going on a daily walk are endless, especially if that walk is outdoors. The biggest change I've seen since prioritizing and making a walk part of my daily routine is by far my mental health. The research shows that just 10 minutes of walking each day can actually modify your nervous system enough to notice a significant decrease in anger and even anxiety.


Along with mental health benefits, a daily walk can also help improve some aspects of physical health by alleviating joint pain, burning calories, reducing our risk of chronic diseases, stimulating your digestive system, boosting the immune system, and improving sleep.


3. Make your bed every day.

This one is pretty simple, but I can't stress how important it is! Aim to make your bed as soon as you get out of it in the morning to begin your day in a positive, proactive way. If you start your day by making the bed, you can go ahead with the rest of your day knowing that you've already accomplished something, and will encourage you to complete another task, then another.


Not only does a clean, fresh bed enhance the look and feel of your cozy bedroom space, but the research actually shows that people who make their bed each morning are more likely to have a more restful sleep each night. If you're looking to improve the quality of your sleep and you don't already do this, it's definitely worth a shot!


4. Serve veggies first.

You should always aim to serve some sort of vegetable with each meal, and an easy way to ensure you get a nice, healthy serving is to put veggies on your plate first! Here's a situation that may sound familiar: You're serving yourself a plate at family dinner, and because you were so hungry and everything looked so tasty, you realize you've already filled your entire plate before you could get around to all the side dishes, specifically, the vegetables. So you do your best to balance a carrot or two on top of your already-full plate and sit down, leaving yourself with a less-than-healthy serving of veggies! The best way to avoid this catastrophe is to simply start by adding veggies to your plate first. That way, there will definitely be room for a full serving, and it might even cause you to take a smaller, more reasonable helping of something that may not be as nutritious.


Next level tip: It can also be helpful to start your meal by eating your vegetables first. This is a great way to ensure you eat your whole serving, and your body will also take in a lot of fiber, naturally making you feel more full.


5. Meditate.

I know this one sounds a little bit intimidating if it's not something you've done before, but I promise it is very easy to get started! Basically, the point of meditating is to train your mind to focus better, and to redirect your thoughts. It is actually becoming increasingly popular as people learn more about its incredible health benefits. Developing a daily meditation practice has been proven to reduce stress, control anxiety, enhance self-awareness, improve sleep, and promote emotional health. It may also help reduce and/or prevent memory loss, combat addictions, and even control pain. Stay tuned for a blog post all about meditation, with a few guided examples coming soon!


6. Replace "should" with "could

This tiny change in mindset will change your life. When negative self-talk starts to arise, flip yous "should" to a "could"! Choose to empower yourself rather than put yourself down. For example, "I should wake up early tomorrow and take the dog for a walk before work" could easily be changed to "I could wake up early and go for a walk tomorrow". "I could meal prep this week", "I could clean up the house" "I could start that blog". It makes it sound like less of a chore, and more fun and empowering! It's a simple switch that I highly recommend trying out.

 

Thanks for reading, and I hope this post encourages you to choose one thing you can improve on this week. But keep it small! Any step in the right direction is progress.


If you're looking for more 1:1 guidance with your health and wellness, or feel like you need some accountability in your life, click the button below to schedule your free 30-minute Connection Session with me! I'd love to chat about your goals and how we can reach them together. Have questions for me? Shoot me an email to emily@energyempoweredhwc.com!


Stay tuned for the launch of a few new things that have been cookin' lately!


Thank you for being here, I appreciate you ♡




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