As the holidays fall away and the normal rhythm of life resurfaces, it’s easy to feel jumbled by the pure chaos the holidays always bring. The time with family, gift-giving and delicious treats may have filled your soul, but the logistics, preparation, and aftermath of hosting or traveling are draining.
As another year begins, taking time to detox and prepare for what’s ahead is one of the kindest things you can do for yourself. Here are a few simple tasks you can incorporate into your routine.
According to the Mayo Clinic, walking is an easy and healthful practice with many benefits. Besides getting to enjoy fresh air, walking improves your cardiovascular health, strengthens muscles, bones, increases endurance, and decreases the chances of heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure. The more briskly you walk, the stronger your body will become. Plus, brisk walking is a good alternative to running.
After holidays with a full house of loud, excited people passing, quiet time can be a space to decompress and reflect on the events of the season. According to Cleveland Health Clinic, silence offers opportunities for us to reduce internal noise, increase mindfulness, and daydream.
Social media’s ability to connect people from across the world and share images, ideas, and opinions is stimulating. However, aimless scrolling can rob us of happiness, time, and productivity.
Deleting the social media apps or using time restriction software can give us some of that time back – and after the initial weaning period, less social media will result in a clearer mind, better sleep, higher productivity, and less stress.
According to Healthline, reading a book is one of the best things for mental health. Scanning words on a page strengthens your brain, increases empathy, builds vocabulary, and reduces stress. Re-reading a book gives the brain a chance to flow through a story easier, making the experience extra calming.
Exercise of all sorts benefits the body, but the meditative breath and stretching that is innately part of yoga make for a restorative experience. According to Healthline, yoga improves flexibility, balance, circulation, and strength while decreasing inflammation in the body.
Cleaning can be therapeutic! Changing out décor and straightening your space kicks off the productive part of your brain, opening the figurative door for continued productivity. Decluttering your space gets you moving, gives a sense of achievement, and keeps your life organized.
Journaling can be considered a ‘brain download.’ According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, journaling is a helpful tool in managing mental health. Daily journaling can help manage anxiety, reduce stress, help you prioritize tasks, and develop a big picture of your life.
Relationships can make or break your mental health, and carefully considering who you spend time with and how much influence they have over you shouldat least be a yearly consideration.
Toxic people in your life can make you doubt your decisions and put you on edge, keeping you from your full potential. Carefully consider your inner circle and others close to you, and ask yourself what they’re adding to your life.
We’ve all been told that what you eat influences how you feel. That statement might never ring truer than after a week of sugary treats around Christmas time.
According to the CDC, a healthy diet can lengthen your lifespan and keep your stomach happy. Other benefits include heightened immunity, stronger muscles, and a lower risk of heart disease. A diet doesn’t have to be perfect, but taking steps towards thoughtful eating can improve health in several areas.
Keeping a physical record of your goals gives them extra influence. When you frequently see what you want to achieve, it changes your mindset and can help subconsciously propel you towards your goals.
Caring for yourself is always important, and as the new year presents itself there is no better time to listen to your body and take some time to improve your happiness.