A settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up.

The word habit is normally associated with the things we want to -stop- doing, but what if we made our habits GOOD and healthy? I made here a short list of healthy habits that we can create together to start the new year ahead. Why wait until 2018, let's kickstart the new year NOW!

1. De-clutter

This topic is number one in my book because when I am organized everything else seems to run little smoother. Clutter can be a physical mess or mentally bogged down with too much going on. A good way to declutter is to take a short time out of the day, even 10 minutes, to organize the actual clutter in the house or taking a bubble bath to ease the clutter going on in our mind. In the case that there is no such thing as 10 minutes of quiet time at home (so real) take your work commute, lunch break, shower, etc. to put on your favorite music and escape the busyness.

2. Eating healthier

This one sounds typical, right? It is easy to get stuck in a daily routine of eating junkie processed foods because in public we are surrounded by unhealthy food all the time. Start this one at home by swapping the candy or cookies on the counter to colorful fruits. Another trick is to put the sweets and junk food in a non-transparent container and then put it on the top shelf out of eye level. When we are hungry we want to first see our healthy options, so having them at eye level, in transparent containers is a little trick I like. Let's call this out of sight, out of mind.

3. Write down your to-do's

Did you know that making a physical check-list increases the chance of accomplishing it by 42%?(Huff. Post) I have found it efficient to take time at the end of the day to make tomorrow's to-do's, adding to it when something comes up.

4. Set short-term goals WEEKLY

Do you find yourself in a routine and forget that you want to eventually move forward and do bigger and better things? Setting goals is my way of keeping things fresh and on my toes. Sure, I have one year and five year goals and have them (written down) but I have goals set for the week and month to remind myself that NOW is the time to move forward. Make it a habit to set short term goals and stay on your toes NOW. This can alter your long term goals because you have the ability to achieve them sooner as you're moving forward now.

5. Make the most of your workouts

Compound exercise is a good way to make most of a quick workout. Combine two movements such as a lunge + bicep curls or a plank + dumbbell rows for a two in one movement. This will increase your heart rate and calorie burning potential.

6. Learn to love foam rolling

Foam rolling can be great for relieving muscle pain, releasing muscle tightness, improving flexibility and so much more. Pre-workout foam rolling can help loosen tight and sore muscles to help you move more efficiently and comfortable during exercise. Post-workout foam rolling is great for muscle recovery.

7. Daily Devotionals

Devotionals are a great way to begin or end your day. It is a specific spiritual reading for each calendar day and they can be a time of prayer or meditation. It is a time to focus your attention on what is good and gracious. This could also be words from your favorite motivational speaker or writer.

8. A regular sleep schedule

We all know sleep is so important for good health, but how can we create a habit out of it? Make a commitment with yourself for a consistent bedtime and stick to it. Helpful tips to a better sleep, keep your room temperature low and it should be very dark. If you're not sure how dark it should be try the arm test. Raise your arm in front of you and if you can still see it the room is too bright.

9. Find your team

By team, I mean find people who also want to move forward and who bring joy. It can make it difficult to move forward when we are surrounded by people who do not desire the same things as us. Say goodbye and more importantly HELLO to people who share similar values.

10. Independence

I am ending with the broad topic of independence. This can mean getting rid of a spider on your own, or taking a solo trip somewhere completely new. There is always more to discover about ourselves and it may occur outside the normal comfort zone. Trying something new is a great way find out a little more about what we are truly capable of doing on our own. I won't push it too hard, but TRY SOMETHING NEW!

Here's to the joy of the present, and to the beautiful changes of the future. 2018 here we come!


Huffington Post

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