Resolutions for 2017? How about ending the year healthier and happier than you started? You will see dozens of articles this month with a fitness tip here or a dieting tip there, but what’s the lasting power? If by 2018 you could healthier or happier at work then what would you be willing to do to make that happen?
Here’s a few things you COULD do that will almost guarantee you’ll be seeing life a little better next year.
Learn something new. Research has shown that regardless of age, when you learn new activities your brain functions and connections get stronger. You don’t have to go crazy, but pick one skill. Give yourself a baseline measurement and check back in 12 months. (Ideas: Sudoku, ukulele, knitting etc.)
Make one positive change in your diet. We pretty much all agree that the basics of healthy weight is “eat less, move more.” The basics of healthy diet is “you are what you eat.” The reality is that your body replaces itself (its cells) every seven to 15 years. The body replaces itself with the nutrients we feed it. Perhaps an “apple a day” isn’t such a bad idea. (Ideas: Drink more water/ less beer, less meat, more vegetables, etc.)
Don’t let gravity win. Sitting in front of a computer all day and heading home, drawn like a magnet to the couch will bring your body closer and closer to the ground over time. I was surprised when my staff asked for a standing desk or a balance ball chair. I even saw someone doing planks and sit-ups on a break. What’s this all about? It’s the realization that being sedentary will most likely lead to weak muscles, which leads to injury and poor aging.
Hold your tongue. I promise you will not explode if you hold back your negative words. The tendency to criticize practically everyone and everything will not benefit you. Ask yourself the question: If I say (or write this on Facebook) am I adding more joy to the world? Negativity is an absolute health robber.
Finally, keep track. Benchmarking isn’t just for your workplace. Take inventory of where you are today. Track h e a l t h / f i t n e s s, positive comments and notes and how you feel each day. Measure days you feel better than others and see if you can figure out WHY.
Mary Louise VanNatta, CAE is CEO of VanNatta Public Relations. @PRSalem.