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New Year, New You

January 2020

Every year, January 1st is symbolic to everyone as a clean slate, fresh start, or a reboot to reevaluate how we have just lived for the last 12 months and make some changes. Many of us set very lofty goals involving diet and fitness only to find ourselves slipping back into comfortable habits by the end of January that can leave us frustrated and disappointed in ourselves.

Goals are a great thing to have and can help us achieve many things we want to accomplish in life. How we set them and the expectations we put on ourselves to achieve them is another story. January 1st can absolutely be a great time to set new goals, reframe how you were thinking about things in the past and look towards new or different ways to live your life. The important thing to do is to find balance and set realistic goals that you know you can safely accomplish without getting down on yourself at the beginning of a new year.

A great example of this is the notion of health and fitness. Most people would agree that they want to live their best life in all aspects. Setting an unrealistic and pretty drastic goal of wanting to lose 20-30lbs within a two-week period (come on, we all have heard someone tell us this before) is only setting ourselves up for failure and adding unneeded pressure and stress in an already stressful world. Why not try reframing it to not be worried about the number on scale but rather wanting to feel better and stronger physically? If losing weight is something you really want to accomplish, great, but remember that stretching that out over the course of several months is way more attainable and will leave you feeling less pressure and stress if you have minor setbacks along the way. After all, we are human and if you live in Wisconsin…we have cheese and beer…need I say more?

Knowing your personality and what does and doesn’t motivate you is essential when setting goals. Establish a workout and meal plan, but allow for a rest day or cheat day and be kind to yourself in the process. Think of it as a whole-body reboot involving the mind, body and spirit. Instead of obsessing over the number on the scale, think about the endorphin kick you get while working out and how awesome you feel afterwards. Plan to work out on days and times you will feel most productive, try out some new recipes and snacks, switch up your workout routine with a variety of different things so you don’t get bored. Essentially don’t lock yourself in to only one way of achieving these goals.

Are you over the traditional health and fitness resolutions every year? Mix it up and try out some of these suggestions. You never know what it could lead to and how it could positively impact your life in the process.

Here are 10 other resolutions you can put into practice to kick off 2020.

  • Make everyday a Random Act of Kindness Day. The world can never have enough kindness in it. You may be surprised at how much doing this will touch your own life.
  • Compliment someone every day. We all know how amazing it feels when someone or a stranger gives us an unsolicited compliment we weren’t expecting. Change someone’s day for the better and put a smile on their face.
  • Read more. Reading is a great stress reliever that stimulates your brain, gets you thinking and can help improve your overall memory and concentration. It also may help put certain aspects of life in a whole new perspective.
  • Work on cutting down your carbon footprint and waste. Use products that are eco-friendly, reusable and read up on how little changes can help our environment. Buying less plastic is key in helping Mother Earth…pay attention to what you are purchasing.
  • So often you hear volunteers share that they feel they get so much more from volunteering than they give. Give it a try and see how great it can be for your physical and mental health.
  • Travel more. Your willingness to be frugal in small ways will allow you the opportunity to see the world. Being flexible, budgeting and giving up a little bit of comfort and luxury can afford you many chances to see the world in ways you never thought possible.
  • Stay connected with the people that matter in your life. The world is big and can get lonely. Make it a point to reach out on a regular basis to check in on people. A quick text, call or email can make a huge difference in someone’s day. Even better…write them a snail mail letter. It is a thoughtful gesture that will surely make someone’s day.
  • Join a networking group or club. It’s a great way to meet new people, try new things and make new friends.
  • Create a budget for yourself and try to save some of each paycheck to put into a savings or investment account. A small amount can really add up over time and your future self will thank you.
  • De-clutter and keep your space clean and organized. A messy and cluttered environment adds stress to your life. Schedule cleaning your home and workspace like an appointment and donate things you no longer need.

Did you know that people who write down their goals are 42% more likely to achieve them? That’s a fact. Grab some paper and start mapping out just how fabulous your 2020 is going to be.

Whatever you have planned for yourself in the new year…best of luck in 2020. You got this!