This is your year – make your health a priority.
January finds people filled with good intentions to better themselves in all sorts of ways. Avoiding junk food, working out, and losing weight are very popular and virtuous New Year resolutions, but the truth is, most people will be back to their less-than-ideal habits by February. We have all heard the saying “please put on your own oxygen mask before assisting those around you.” Making your own health a priority means that you can be a better help to those around you and be a better employee, employer, parent, spouse and friend.
Here are a few tips to help you make your health a priority in 2017:
1. Plan your “me” time.
Do you plan your personal time? If you look at a typical busy person’s planner, you’ll see work hours, lunch meetings, and many more engagements peppered throughout. Rarely will you see “me time” in there: if you don’t write it down, it is not a priority. Something else will come up that will feel more important than reading a book, or meditating, or just enjoying a half-hour of nothingness. Make your personal time a priority – something that you can not skip – by writing it down and being implacable about it.
2. Plan your year ahead.
If you’ve been to a garage for an oil change, you’ll be familiar with the little sticker they will put in your windshield letting you know that when your car will need its next oil change. It’s a small reminder to book your next appointment, and that regular maintenance will keep your car running smoothly. You might also be familiar with the mileage-based maintenance recommended for your car. Your body needs the same regular care and attention to keep functioning its best.
There are countless planners (paper or digital) out there that will facilitate planning your meals, workouts, work life, etc. Things that are done regularly are easily planned. These good “body maintenance” habits do not need to be complicated: Drink 8 glasses of water a day. Brush your teeth after each meal. Plan healthy meals for you and your family weekly. Plan to move and exercise several times a week. Stretch regularly. Plan to get adjusted monthly. Book regular massages. Plan your bi-yearly visit to the dentist. Plan to visit your medical doctor for your yearly physical. Just like you don’t wait for your car to break down to get an oil change, good wellness habits should be done regularly and made a priority to maintain your health. If you are fortunate enough to have health benefits through your work, plan to use them proactively and preventatively to make yourself healthier.
Author and motivational speaker Jim Rohn said it best: “Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” Everything else is secondary. Start good habits now, and stick to them. This is the year of “you.” Be your own priority.