Too often, we think about how we might want to do things differently, and then another day goes by and we’re still in the same rut. All of a sudden, it’s December and we then wait for the calendar to turn and “resolve” to make next year better. Why wait?
We know that lifestyle choices including food, sleep, and activity can help quality of life. If you do even a few small things in this area, perhaps your holidays could be even brighter. Here are a few easy, important things you can choose to do starting NOW.
- Floss and brush your teeth. Maybe this doesn’t seem like anything. But it is and that’s kind of the point. You need teeth to eat and chew. Oral health is connected to overall health. Plus, who wants to have food stuck in their teeth? Just saying.
- Go to bed earlier. Set a timer to remind you to do this if you have to. Proper sleep can help manage weight and help everyone in the family have better health.
- Make a list. (Can I say it – check it twice 😉) Stop stressing yourself out by trying to remember stuff that you kind of know you won’t. Need to buy batteries for holiday décor or gadgets? Need that one oddball ingredient for the dish you are known for? Write. It. Down.
- Review your spices. Check dates, see what you are missing for your favorite recipes, and find the best sales to get what you need in the house. You know those favorite flavors we look forward to all year? Here’s your chance to score big.
- Hydrate. I told you this list would seem easy. Our bodies are like giant swimming pools from the standpoint that our weight is about 2/3 water. Get yourself a pretty glass or water bottle, and get to drinking your H20. I like to make it a point to grab a refillable cup for the car, too. Shopping for presents (and food) can be thirsty work.
- Reconnect with old friends. Holiday cards and/or thank you notes may seem like it’s just one more thing to do. Think of it this way: it’s the old school version of social media. Let someone know you are thinking about them and send smiles across the miles – for both of you.
- Eat one more fruit and/or vegetable each day. Most people do not eat the fruits and veggies needed each day to maintain health. This doesn’t mean there is something wrong with the other food groups. This just means that we know we need them, we know they’re loaded with nutrition, and it’s cold and flu season. The crisp, bright colors and flavors are also a treat to eat amidst all the decadent, heavy foods of the holidays, too, so what’s not to like?
- Compare labels. I’m not necessarily talking about every item in the store on every single grocery trip. Pick one thing you like to eat, and compare at least two options. One of my favorite “wow” examples of this is tortillas. I have a yummy shrimp and crab enchilada recipe that’s super delicious and easy to make. The tortillas range from 80 -210 calories for the same size. Guess what? They do the same thing – contain the filling and provide a nice layer of flavor. Guess what else? I pick the 80-100ish calorie ones because I like to eat more than one enchilada but I want my favorite jeans to fit next year.
- Move. This one doesn’t mean marathon unless that’s your jam. I’m talking about not concerning yourself with the very closest parking spot (weather permitting). This also doesn’t have to mean taking the stairs to the 40th floor. No. Take the stairs two or three flights so you aren’t sweaty when you get to the meeting or party. Take the first parking spot you see. Walk one more lap around the grocery store for extra steps. This one is fun because you might find a sale you didn’t know about, or see something cool to add to your menu.
- Do something every day that relates to a personal goal you have. Maybe it’s reading a certain book. Maybe it’s making one better choice at snack or meal time. Maybe it’s doing one or more of these other things above.
Taking care of yourself doesn’t mean you are judging someone else for making whatever choices they are making. Everyone has their own journey, and there’s lots of ways to do things and get to a good spot in terms of health and wellbeing.
Do your thing. Take care of yourself. Happy, Healthy, and FUN Holidays to you and yours!