At the start of each year, many of us set New Year's resolutions with the best of intentions. Unfortunately, by February, most of these resolutions have fallen by the wayside. What if instead of setting lofty goals, we incorporated wellness routines into our daily lives for a longer-lasting impact? The year 2024 shouldn't be about body transformations or drastic lifestyle changes. Instead, let's focus on our overall wellness, creating resolutions that stick.
Understanding the Concept of Wellness
Wellness isn't just about physical health. It also includes mental, emotional, and social health. Feeling well within yourself involves maintaining a balanced lifestyle that nurtures all these aspects.
The Pillars of Wellness
Physical: nourishing your body through a balanced diet and regular physical activity.
Emotional: understanding your feelings and coping effectively with stress.
Mental: actively engaging in creative, stimulating mental activities.
Social: cultivating healthy relationships and connecting with your community.
These four attributes provide a comprehensive definition of wellness, emphasizing the importance of nurturing all these facets rather than focusing solely on one.
Incorporating Wellness Into Daily Habits
Instead of setting big, overarching resolutions such as losing a considerable amount of weight or quitting an unhealthy habit suddenly, what if we focused on smaller, manageable wellness tasks that can seamlessly fit into our everyday routines?
Spend Time Outside
Nature has an incredible way of calming the mind and boosting physical wellbeing. Make it a point to get outside each day, even for just a few minutes. It could be a morning walk, reading in the park during lunch, or even just taking a few breaths on your balcony before dinner.
Connect With Loved Ones
Social wellness is about maintaining healthy relationships and feeling connected to a community. Making time for loved ones - family, friends, colleagues or neighbours can enhance your social wellbeing.
Fuel Your Body with Good Food
Rather than drastically changing your diet, try incorporating healthier foods. Swap processed snacks with fruits, opt for water instead of soft drinks, or start your day with a protein-rich breakfast. These small changes can have a big impact on your physical wellness.
Engage Your Mind
Spending a few minutes each day learning something new or engaging in a hobby can stimulate mental wellness. Consider scheduling time to read books, learn a new language, try out a DIY project or explore a new interest.
Making Wellness a Sustainable Resolution
To make these resolutions stick, it's important to tailor them to your own lifestyle and needs rather than following a generic plan.
Customize Your Wellness Plan
What works for others might not work for you. If you're not a morning person, don't force yourself to wake up at dawn for a run. Instead, find a time of day when you feel most energetic.
Be Kind to Yourself
Wellness is not about achieving perfection but improving gradual progression. Skip the guilt if you missed a day of working out or indulged in your favourite treat. Achievements should be celebrated and setbacks accepted as part of the journey.
Turning Resolutions into Reality
Wellness is unique to every individual, and there's no one-size-fits-all approach. Appreciate the small changes you make in your daily routine and be patient with yourself.
Remember, wellness is not a single goal to be achieved but an ongoing process. It's about creating a lifestyle that makes space for growth, self-care, and healthy habits. So, as we step into 2024, let's resolve to make wellbeing a part of our every day. After all, health is indeed wealth!
"The greatest wealth is health." - Virgil
Oliver Huxhold, Martina Miche, Benjamin Schüz, Benefits of Having Friends in Older Ages: Differential Effects of Informal Social Activities on Well-Being in Middle-Aged and Older Adults, The Journals of Gerontology: Series B, Volume 69, Issue 3, May 2014, Pages 366–375, https://doi.org/10.1093/geronb/gbt029
Sihvola N, Korpela R, Henelius A, et al. Breakfast high in whey protein or carbohydrates improves coping with workload in healthy subjects. British Journal of Nutrition. 2013;110(9):1712-1721. doi:10.1017/S0007114513000779