Another January means another opportunity to get a fresh start and make some positive changes in our lives. Perhaps the most positive thing you can do for yourself is resolve to be healthy in the new year.
But it’s not enough just to say, “I want to be healthier.” Goals are much easier to achieve when they have tangible end points and quantifiable checkpoints along the way. Here are a few ways we recommend resolving to be healthy this year.
Lose X number of pounds. For most of us, losing weight is not a bad resolution at all, but it has to have a number attached to it. Maybe it’s just 5 pounds. Whatever you decide, it’s important for you to know how close you are to your goal, or how far, which is hard to do if your resolution is just “to lose weight.”
Exercise X times per week, or minutes per day. Maybe you want to exercise more. That’s good, but if you didn’t exercise much in 2015, “more” could mean once every few months, which is surely not enough to make a real difference.
Host/attend X number of social events per month. It’s easy for people to forget that psychological health is just as important as physical health. While it can be easy to get bogged down in work and family responsibilities, you need to make time to be social and have fun.
Quit smoking. If you’re a smoker, this is the year you can become a non-smoker. We’re not here to tell you it will be easy, but know that people quit every single day. There are lots of ways, from pills to patches to books. You can do it: pick a day and commit!
Stop eating X. Eating habits are often very hard to break. Changing the entire contents of one’s diet is very difficult to do, but if you’d like to eat healthier, maybe you pick one or two items that are now totally off limits. This will make you aware of your intention to be healthier every time you eat.
Get regular checkups. When was your last dental checkup? Eye exam? If you want to know that you’re really taking care of yourself, you need to consult with the people who know: doctors! The fact is we can’t control everything about our health and it’s not always immediately obvious when something is wrong.
These are all great ideas but if you want to take your health seriously in 2016, the number one thing you really need to do is to sign up for a healthcare plan before the deadline expires. If you have any questions about what kind of plan is right for you or how to sign up, contact us or peruse our blog archive.