5 Healthy Habits to Adopt This Year

For many people, January is when we make New Year’s resolutions, setting high goals to better ourselves. The resolutions run a wide array of topics but include everything from losing weight to increasing our regular exercise to changing our eating habits. But sadly, about 80% of people ditch their resolutions by February. Instead, adopting simple, healthy habits is a great way to prevent burnout!

Because we set ourselves up for failure when we focus on a bunch of major changes all at once, there’s no shame in quitting. The problem is we want quick fixes with immediate outcomes. When we don’t see results quickly, frustration hits, and burnout results. Then we give up.

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Instead, a healthier life often happens by introducing healthy habits you incorporate into your daily routine slowly over time so your habits stick better.

Free or Low-Cost Healthy Habits for the New Year

If you’re ready to try something different, you might want to adopt a new healthy habit. Building small habits to incorporate into your daily or weekly routine will make it easier to create long-term lifestyle habits. I’ve listed some habits I like to focus on, with mini-challenges for each. These suggestions are also topics that consistently come up with guests on my podcast as non-negotiables for health.

Please resist the temptation to think, “I should do all of these.” Pick one to focus on. Try one of the challenges for ten weeks (about the time it takes to form a new habit). After completing it, reward yourself by setting a new goal (and maybe a small reward!). If you need some tips or inspiration for incorporating new habits, I put together this short podcast episode to help!

1. Get Enough Sleep

Sleep is a non-negotiable for health. (Some sleep experts say it’s even more important than diet and exercise combined!) Sleep helps the body restore and heal, is vital for hormone production, improves mood, aids in weight loss, and more. In short, if you aren’t sleeping, you aren’t healthy.

Sleep is also free and is a pretty simple change to make if you commit to it. Granted, some people do have trouble falling or staying asleep, but there are often simple remedies to help with this as well.

The Challenge: Start small. Think through your bedtime routine. What’s the one thing you could change that would make the most impact right away?

  • Buy some magnesium oil and apply it to your feet every night before bed. Reward yourself for keeping this habit for ten weeks by investing in something to improve your sleeping environment: new pajamas, a sleep mask, or a good book to read.
  • Blue light from screens can interfere with sleep. After dinner, dim the lights in the house and wear blue-light-blocking glasses until bedtime. Reduce screen time and turn off social media. Instead, read a book! This small change doesn’t cost much but helps protect your body’s natural sleep cycle.
  • For about 10-15 minutes before bed, put your legs up the wall. You can do this while meditating, reading, or thinking about things you’re grateful for from the day. Not only does it help with circulation, but you’ll reduce your stress, which helps you sleep better!

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