how to (not) start 2017

It’s the 1st of January. The period of over-indulgence is over and I’d like to give you some tips on how to have the healthiest start to the year – in body and mind.

Don’t adopt the ‘all or nothing’ mentality.
We all make the mistake of planning for the ‘perfect’ future, one without unexpected interruptions, distractions, illnesses, stress and changing priorities. And when something interrupts our perfected routine, we fail… and give up on making it work. This puts unnecessary pressure on us & puts us on the path of self-loathing and misery.
We need to make plans for a ‘real life’ instead. Set realistic goals, taking into account your personal lifestyle, not copying someone else’s.

As with all goals, they will take time to be achieved. Whether they are health, career, self-development related… Look at what your lifestyle is like now. You may have a family and kids or perhaps you’re running a business which very demanding. Plan your weekly routine taking these things into account.
If you’re really pressed for time, don’t set a goal of spending 2h at the gym 5x a week. Instead find what works for you – perhaps getting up earlier in the morning to smash out a 20min HIIT session 3x a week and a 1h weight session at the gym 1-2x per week suits your lifestyle better?
Also, don’t run yourself into the ground with all these goals and set some time aside for rest – go for a long walk or go to a yoga class to relax and clear your mind, meditate, watch a movie or read your favourite magazine. We all need some down time to stay sane.

Don’t even say the word ‘detox’!
Whatever you do – do not sign up to any juice diets, fasting, low-fat diets or any other diet for that matter. They are going to do more harm than good. You need to look after your body, not deprive it of nutrients.
No diet, no juice or magic pill is going to miraculously detox your body of all the junk foods and alcohol you’ve consumed over the festive period. We’ve got liver and kidneys for that! Instead we should focus on a well-rounded and sustainable (I can’t stress this enough!) diet that includes simple and complex carbs, healthy fats and good quality protein to support our bodily functions and organs, which naturally rid our bodies of toxic substances.

This also doesn’t mean that you can never have cake again. I’d suggest you adopt, what some call, the 80/20 lifestyle.
80% of the time be good and stick to a healthy diet and exercise regime.
20% of the time be a little bit bad and have a slice of cake and spend a day doing nothing and lounging in your PJs.

It’s all about balance! No extremes, no deprivation, no over-doing it.

Say ‘no’ more
When you do things, ask yourself – is this in line with your values and will it get you closer to achieving your goals? If the answer is no – then don’t waste your time on it.
Spend time on the things that matter. We all complain that days and weeks seem to go by quicker than before, so better make them count and make them purposeful. Say no to things that are an unnecessary distraction and that are gonna make you postpone the things that you should actually be doing.
I’m not saying stop socialising and don’t go out for dinner or a drink with friends, just make these interactions meaningful and fit them around your goals.

What are you waiting for? Like really? What is stopping you from going and getting the things you most want in life? ….apart from irrational fear, self-doubt and unwillingness to leave your comfort zone.
If you actually ask yourself the questions – what is it that I’m scared of? Why can’t I do this? I’m sure you’ll find that you can’t come up with a rational answer.
Cast these debilitating emotions aside and liberate yourself to go and live a life you’ve always wanted to live. Don’t wait for the next New Year, next Monday or when you’ll feel like it!
Go get it!

Have you got any tips you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below!

// xo

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