It's been awhile -- I hope you had a wonderful holiday! I spent time with family in Maryland and Florida and enjoyed every minute. I slept a ton, worked out, ate delicious food and visited with friends. Now, it's the first official Monday of 2015 and, like everyone else, back at it! I hope you, too, had a wonderful holiday and are ready to have the best year yet.
I was asleep when the clock struck midnight on New Years Eve. After enjoying our annual New Year's Eve tradition of nachos and a movie, we fell asleep and awoke to the sounds of our phones pinging with text messages celebrating the new year. The New Year symbolizes a fresh start. It's the time of year when most people make resolutions and promises to themselves to "be great" or "save money" in the year to come. I've found that resolutions, such as "be healthy" are too vague and set without benchmarks with which to measure success. When thinking about what I wanted to change in the new year, one word came to mind -- mindfulness.
Here's what that looks like for me:
- No unnecessary phone checking: I pick up my phone during commercials, at red lights and while waiting in line at the grocery store and just scroll through social media, which takes away from me being present and in the moment.
- Meditate: 5 minutes in the morning and 5 minutes in the evening. It's unrealistic for me, at this time, to sit down for 30 minutes. Why? Because I know myself and after a few days I "won't have time for it." 5-minutes is manageable. Small changes are manageable.
- Check in with my body before eating: There are times I eat out of boredom. There are times, late at night, when I'm tired and, instead of going to sleep, I eat to try and create energy from food to help me stay awake. There are times, especially at gatherings or parties, when I snack on food simply because it's out. See, I enjoy food and the experience of eating, which means I can eat when I'm not hungry. Do you see how this can be a problem?? Even though I workout, I know that I can't out exercise poor eating habits or excess calories. My plan is to check in with my body before eating -- what is it that I want when I want to eat chips? Is it the crunch (have some carrots) or is it the salt (pretzels would be a better option). With enough practice, my body, and mind, will eventually start making the decisions more quickly and with less thought, but the first few months will be very mindful.
- Be present: Not worrying about the past or stressing about the future, but taking actions, today and now, that will create a path that I want. I can't change the past, but I can learn from my mistakes and make better choices in the future. I can't stress about the future, because I only have today, this moment. I love the quote "Worrying is like a rocking chair; it gives you something to do but doesn't get you anywhere."
What is your "one-word" for the New Year?