1. Use tumeric*.
I use a tumeric-black pepper supplement daily (black pepper helps with absorption). Tumeric is shown to be an effective anti-inflammatory, helps with digestion, improves liver function, and may protect against certain forms of cancer.
2. Get your B vitamins*.
Basic building vitamins for your overall health and wellness, B-vitamins aid in metabolic function, overall energy levels, and mental focus.
3. Pay attention to your blood pH.
I began to implement yoga in my workout plan about a month ago. I was an anti- yoga person and did not expect to enjoy or benefit from a weekly class. I showed up because my friend kept inviting me, and the class kicked my ass. Since that night, I look forward to each class, and as a runner, can feel the flexibility benefits already. I’m hooked forever. Lesson learned: I should never rule something out unless I’ve given it a real shot.
Who else is bad at rest? Me, too. I have a hard time shutting off my brain and giving myself downtime. The more I learn about proper rest, the more I know it is vitally important to my mental state but also my overall health and wellness.
6. Vegan diet.
I promise not to be a preachy vegan asshole. Maybe you cannot go vegan, but try to replace a few meat-based meals each week with a vegetarian option. Or, choose to remove red meat and pork for a month…eliminating ANY meat is beneficial to yourself and the environment. Give it a shot (see Lesson Learned in number 4:).
7. Challenge yourself physically.
I think I was listening to the Rich Roll Podcast when I heard this quote (probably not exact): “You can do less in a month than you think and way more in one year than you imagine.” People, myself included, tend to over-goal their months and under-goal their year. Try challenging yourself with a physical goal this year that is hard to imagine! But do that by breaking the big goal down into manageable small, attainable monthly goals. 2019 is the year to change “I wish I was a _________” (insert: runner, yogi, rock climber, ultra athlete, cyclist, adventurer) to “I AM A _______.”
8. Always be in a good book for your soul.
Find good books, guys. Read them. Underline all your favorite parts. Go back to them and re-read all your underlined sentences. Do yourself the favor of learning new things this year, purposefully finding inspiration, and becoming a better human. Books are the cheapest, easiest, and most efficient way to do do just that.
9. Honor your sacred energy.
You have enough energy for today. That is it. Use it well. And do not waste it on ideas, worries, people, memories, or actions that are not worthy of it.
We have made meditation a beginning ritual of every school day. I consider it a gift I am teaching my kids. It is a lifelong pursuit and learning…so expect to go slowly and do not be afraid of your wandering thoughts. Mastery will take your whole life.
11. Live more of your day outside.
Go outside. Get under the sun. Soak in your vitamin D. Maybe combine with #10.
12. Pursue a dream or side hustle.
You have one precious life. Do what you love, friend. It is NEVER TOO LATE to decide to be the artist, the singer, an entrepreneur, a painter, open a coffee shop, write a book, learn an instrument, tryout for a play, climb a mountain, run a marathon. Get out of your own way.
Turn it off. Walk away. Try to get through the hour car trip with no electronics— like the whole world used to when we played license plate games or day dreamed or just talked as a family. Also, if you want to hear the BEST approach I’ve ever listened to regarding tech, children, and parenting through this issue with intention and grace, check out this podcast episode! I’ve listened to it three times!
14. Bedtime routine.
Something I need to integrate this year, a bedtime routine can be the difference between a good night’s sleep and a terrible attempt at restless horizontal standing:). Be creative. Use music, meditation, a quick yoga flow, essential oils, massage— whatever works to bring you to a calm, quiet space so you can enter rest fully.
15. Create something beautiful to you.
When was the last time you were actively creative? Creativity, in any form or media, is essential for a purpose-filled life. We can be creative in any role we fill: spouse, parent, accountant, teacher, grandparent, sister, artist, poet, maintenance worker, writer— it is not the position that determines creativity, but our attitude, perspective, and actions.
16. Cold showers.
See this guy. I have tried this cold shower thing twice. Made it through 30 seconds (maybe). But I think it is worth pursuit. Also, I’ve kept up my cold winter running… begrudgingly. I hate the feeling of cold, but its health benefits are worth the discomfort. What do you think?
17. Shop consciously, enviro-friendly, and all naturally.
How can we be healthy if we are blind to the actions that destroy the health of our planet? It is all connected. “How you do one thing is how you do everything” (Richard Rohr quote). My health is connected in every way to the planet, and vise-versa; so I will continue to choose better, buy smarter, and live with a smaller footprint.
18. Eat organic and avoid the dirty dozen.
Organic is better, but it is not always an option for every fruit and veggie in every store. Use this chart to check which ones to avoid if not organic. I memorized it, so I didn’t have to keep searching Pinterest in the middle of the grocery store.
19. Learn to breathe.
2019 gives you 365 chances to be better, live healthier, and also accept where you are at. Each day might not be a win. You might even take a few steps backward here and there. It is okay. Chances are, the overall trajectory of your year will be forward!
It does not matter so much that you mess up or fall down, but it totally matters how you respond to it. Take the next BEST step afterwards.
You’ll find your way home again.
*Disclaimer— Talk to your doctor before adding any supplements and/or vitamins to your daily diet. I am just suggesting things that work well for me. Everyone is different!