New Year… new me?

Hello Sunshine, happy Monday! 

How are you? I hope you had a lovely weekend and that you have a good week.

I have been having a good and relaxing couple of days, and I’m very excited about today’s post because it is the first one of the year from my dear friend Lily. I hope you remember her from last year’s posts. 

Today, she wrote a post about New Year’s resolutions and creating new habits that lead to a healthy lifestyle. New Year…new me? is all about helping you in this journey we all start every January.

After last week’s post about my journey with depression, I hope you enjoy a more cheerful one with Lily. So without any more to say on my part, I am leaving you with her post.

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New Year… new me? 

The New Year can bring a lot of joy and motivation, but it can also come with lots of pressure. Of course, we all want to achieve our resolutions. It is no surprise that nutritionists get their agendas all booked up during January. This could happen because we all want a fresh start in all aspects. We want to leave the past behind and start with a new beginning. A healthy diet, lots of exercise, drinking more water, meditation, reading… isn’t it a little too much? 

We have plenty of motivation to achieve all our resolutions. Still, eventually, we end up confused, stressed, and with no results at all. 

Do you need a detox? 

As a nutritionist, I’ve always heard people telling me that before starting a new diet, they want to do a “cleanse” or “purge” of all their previous eating habits. This can come a little too strong, as it is a significant change of lifestyle from one day to another, making it almost impossible to continue. From my personal and professional experience, I can assure you that this will only make you feel overwhelmed. Plus, it will take away all that motivation you have and seem like a goal that is way too far to achieve. 

What we should be doing instead is taking small steps towards a better version of ourselves. Here are some pieces of advice. 

Forget about “go big or go home” 

When it comes to significant lifestyle changes, the slower, the better. Start by changing or adding a new habit every week or month. That way, you will focus entirely, and you’ll be more likely to achieve it. Analyze your areas of opportunity and the reasons you want to modify that habit. Once you’ve ensured you’re doing it for yourself, set a realistic and achievable goal and design a plan to achieve it. 

For example: “drinking more water” is neither achievable nor realistic. If you set “drink 2 liters of water per day” instead, you’ll know how many water bottles a day you need to carry with you. 

More movement eventually leads to exercise 

A common mistake is trying to exercise and burn all the calories you’ve ever consumed during your first week back at the gym. Relax, it is all going to pay off, but you need to be patient. Start with small changes so you don’t lose your goal or motivation. If you are not in the mood to start exercising, go for a walk, pay close attention to what surrounds you, listen to your favorite music, and don’t keep track of time. Find anything that you enjoy and try to do it at least four days a week. Eventually, you will start doing it as a hobby, not as an obligation. This will make it easier as your body will get used to the movement, and you will not perceive it as a stressful moment but as a time you dedicate to yourself. 

Listen to your body 

No nutritionist can ever tell you better recommendations than the ones your body sends you. We are so used to relying on other products that we forget that the most powerful and effective machine is already with us. Listen to the signals your body tries to tell you, learn to differentiate your needs. 

Sometimes, we are not hungry, and we are just bored. Back pain can also tell you that you need to walk outside and get some fresh air. If you learn to differentiate what you feel, you will provide your body with the appropriate material. 

Rest 

There is nothing more powerful than good rest. We tend to forget that rest is the fundamental element of every excellent result we want to achieve. We are used to feeling guilty when we are resting. We feel “unproductive” when we rest a day from a diet or skip the gym. The truth is, resting is beneficial in every way possible. Research shows that we can have better results if we set days a week to rest from diets and exercise. It helps your body regulate itself and allows you not to lose motivation. 

Resting at night is also as important. Many studies prove that a good night’s sleep is crucial for weight loss and overall health. When we don’t sleep enough, we produce stress hormones that create a toxic environment for our bodies. 

So, this New Year. The best resolution you can try to achieve is to forgive yourself and leave the past behind. Feel thankful for your body and for the opportunity to change anything you don’t like and start with small changes. Every achievement counts, and in the future, you will thank yourself for each one of those small changes.

To wrap this up

Dear Sunshine, I hope you enjoyed New Year… new me? as much as I did. If you want to follow a bit more about Lily, you can check out her Instagram and Youtube channel, where she shares tips to establish healthy creating habits in your life.

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