I’m so excited to share 7 Health Habits For 2019 with you! I really wanted to share a post that would both inspire you in your health journey and cause you to want to go to the next level in 2019. It’s easy to make a list of health goals and end up with 20, but I wanted this to be practical and doable. I chose 7 after thinking about. After all, that’s one for each day of the week.
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I’ve been on this health journey for a while and I’ve read many books, listened to many podcasts and have a pretty decent grasp on what is true health and what’s a fad. Fads don’t last but real health does. Plus, we don’t want fads anyways, we want to create long lasting habits that will truly last the rest of your life. Health is a journey- I say it a lot. It’s not a destination. If you’re looking for a one hit wonder, this post isn’t for you. There isn’t a magic formula for achieving optimal health, it’s consistency and small steps each and everyday. They all add up.
As my brother, Dr. Matt, a naturopathic physician says, “Accumulate health.”
I couldn’t agree more. Everyday you want to accumulate more and more health. It isn’t the one month where you do “all” the healthy things but the everyday habits that make the difference. I’ve literally been on a journey to heal my hashimoto’s for a while. This hasn’t been something that’s happened over night. It’s taken consistent health habits to get better. But guess what? It works! My antibodies have gone down, my energy has gone up and I’m feeling good. All those little things add up. Let’s check in with our habits and see where they’re at. How do you start your day? What does breakfast look like? Are you always on the go? Not taking time for yourself? Think about your life and the habits that you’ve adopted. Are they serving you or hurting you?
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I think it’s important to have some goals when it comes to creating healthy habits. A couple books I love that talk about forming habits and creating them are:
Some podcasts that I love listening too when it comes to habits and Mindset are:
I think it’s important to always be growing and causing yourself to think bigger. You can adopt new habits and change your old ones. It is possible! Sometimes we just need to be reminded.
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So here are the 7 health habits that have changed my life and I know will change your life if you let them!
I actually adopted a word for this year and it’s mindset. I’ve never done this before but I’ve realized how important mindset is when changing your habits over the years and I want to focus on it even more this year. If I literally don’t change the way I think no habit is going to stick. I may change temporarily but it won’t be lasting change. The past couple years I’ve realized the areas I’ve changed in are because of mindset shifts and changes I’ve had. Not because I was super motivated because we all know that can fade, but because I had changed my thinking about it. I literally don’t have dairy or gluten, and I don’t think about it. I know it can cause my hashimoto’s to flair up, so I just don’t do it. It’s just not even a question in my mind. I just don’t make it an option. If I let my mindset be that maybe I’ll have dairy or gluten sometimes then I might. But I just don’t go there. The same thing could be true for anything in your life. Whether it’s business, family, whatever. This applies to anything, but obviously we’re focusing on health. Do you think you can never lose the weight? Do you think you’ll always struggle eating clean? What’s your limiting belief you’re accepting as truth?
Who you associate yourself with is a pretty big deal. I know we’ve all heard it. Who you surround yourself with is who you become. When you surround yourself with people that cause you to go higher, than you fall in line with that. Imagine if your best friend was constantly working out, being active and asking you to come. Don’t you think that would rub off on you? Eventually you would probably go workout and start being more active. The opposite is also true. If you hang around people that just want to sit around and watch t.v. all day, eat junk food and don’t care about health, you’ll likely start adopting those same habits. I’m not saying ditch all your friends but consider what you want to change in your life when it comes to healthy habits and if your friends are supporting those goals. Maybe it will just take you standing up saying you’re going to start eating clean and they would follow suit. Sometimes someone just needs to be the first one that stands up. The same could be true for your spouse. Maybe you wished they were stronger for you when it came to living out a clean lifestyle but maybe it will have to start with you making the first step. Be the person that you want them to be and eventually it will rub off on them.
I know sounds life chaining huh? Ok, it might seem obvious but this has changed my life. Making real homemade food and avoiding the packaged food. I honestly rarely eat out. I don’t live somewhere where there are a lot of great options. Sometimes I wish I could grab something quick, but quick around me is the nearest fast food joint and that’s not an option. Regardless I do think making real food is a game changer for your health. You’ll eat less, eat more nutrient dense food and save money! Basically setting yourself up for success. You’re literally going to be reprogramming your cells to work for you instead of against you. I never knew how to cook until after I got married. Trust me, when I say this- I didn’t even know how to cook chicken. I’ve come a long way. My hubs jokes now that he’s glad I learned how to cook because I would only make two things when we got married. 🙂 So if you don’t know how to cook, you can learn because I’m living proof! Plus, real food doesn’t have to be overwhelming or intimidating. It actually is really simple and fun once you learn a few tips and tricks. Get a clean eating cookbook like this one or this one to get you started. Sometimes it just takes a little inspiration or follow a real food blogger to keep you going.
I don’t like using the word exercise or working out because I think people associate those with negative connotations. Having an active lifestyle is something everyone should practice. Whether that means going on a hike, going for a walk, doing crossfit, lifting weights, whatever gets your body moving. I know for me its looked different in every season of life. When I was single it was different, as I got married it changed and now that I have kids it looks different. I used to beat myself up when I couldn’t spend the normal time I used to spend when I was just married working out. But I realized consistent activity even if it wasn’t 6 days a week was better than none. Just being consistent with something makes the biggest difference. It all goes back to the accumulating health quote that my brother always says. It’s the little things that add up. Do something that you love! I hear so many people trying to go to the gym and run on the treadmill and they hate it. Don’t do it! Find something that is fun, that challenges you and keeps you wanting more. It might take a couple different times, but don’t force yourself to do things that you know you won’t stick with in the long run. Being active gives you more energy, improves your overall mood and mind, increases strength and endurance- the list could go on and on.
Notice I didn’t say eliminate stress, because let’s face it, that’s impossible. We live in a fast paced world that isn’t slowing down anytime soon. The best thing you can do is to learn how to manage your stress. For me this has come by identifying the stressor and getting to the root of it. Is it really the activity I’m doing or is the fact that I booked my calendar up too much and I don’t have anytime to decompress? Think about why you’re really feeling on edge. Figure out what drains you and what gives you energy. I’m a people person but not an every day let’s have a party type of people person. That would drain me. The biggest advice I can give when it comes to managing stress is learning to say no. It might mean limiting your kid’s after school activities to one sport. It might mean not saying yes to every social event, or allowing time to meal prep for the week. Think about what is causing you to feel stressed and address the triggers.
I know the word self care gets thrown around a lot these days. I think a lot of us are saying it, but not a lot of us are practicing it. When was the last time you actually took an hour or two to yourself and totally did something you loved. Maybe it’s reading a good book, or maybe it’s just watching an hour of your favorite show. It could be getting your nails done once a week or flipping through the latest magazine. Figure out what fills you up and do it. Don’t take a budbble bath if you hate it! Just because someone else likes it doesn’t mean you will. Find what relaxes you. The goal is to do whatever helps you forget about everything else for a little bit and fills up your tank. When I practice this I feel so much better! For my husband it’s working out. If I let him workout for an hour he will come back refreshed and energized- haha sometimes a different person.
This one may sound weird but it’s so true. I find the people I’m constantly coming in contact with our challenging themselves. Whether it’s their mind, their food habits, exercise, at work- they’re wanting to improve and be a better version of themselves. This isn’t a type of rat race thinking that makes you think you always have to be doing something. It’s not for the approval of others but a sense of trying something new. For instance, maybe the fear of getting in shape has kept you from signing up for a 5k or the gym. Challenge yourself to sign up and take the step to face your fears. I bet before long you will wonder why you even had them in the first place. When you challenge yourself I think it helps to keep your mind sharp too. It doesn’t matter what your age is, challenge yourself in something and watch how you surprise yourself.
Do any of these 7 health goals resonate with you? What if you adopted one of these habits each month for the next 7 months, where would your life be? How would it look differently? What are some health habits you’ve adopted?
Here’s to building healthy habits in the new year!
Learn what 7 health habits that have changed my life.