Happy Holidays everyone! The coming of the New Year presents a perfect opportunity to reflect on how we can improve for the next time around. I’m sure we’re all hoping to be fitter, smarter, more productive, etc., but at the core of every goal comes one key element: balance. Without a sense of grounding and self-care, the rest of our goals go straight out the window. So rather than develop some grandiose resolutions for the New Year, why not work towards this one goal? Here are the steps that will help you to stay grounded in 2013.
Eat the Right Foods
Obviously now (holiday season) is not the time to advise shunning every treat that comes your way—we all know that is just not realistic. But it is important to recognize the strong link between the foods we eat and the way we feel. When feeling depressed, for example it’s best to avoid alcohol and too much sugar and instead opt for foods containing fatty acids (chia seeds, flaxseeds) and b-vitamins (nutritional yeast), as they help with mental functioning. Additionally root vegetables like sweet potatoes and squash are a great source of serotonin, which helps to counter mental imbalance.
Spend Time Outside
Several studies reveal the benefits of soaking up rays of sunshine. Not only does sun exposure provide immunity-boosting vitamin d, but it also helps alleviate feelings of depression. So whenever you feel bogged down, take some time to enjoy the great outdoors and remember that the world is much bigger than the problems we face on a day-to-day basis.
Stop—For 30 minutes
We live in a country of motion. Ironically, the “go” mentality often hinders us from getting anything done. When swamped with 80 things to do, we half-accomplish some of the things on our list while zoning out about how we could be something else. Instead, take at least 30 minutes a day to do something completely enjoyable and unproductive. Whether its exercise, watching 30 minutes of your favorite show, or grabbing a bite with a friend, when you get back to work, stopping will leave you with a clear mind and readiness to continue your day.
Keep a Good Support System
Surround yourself with people who lift you up—who enjoy your company and accept your goals and responsibilities. It’s already difficult enough to stay grounded without toxic individuals in your life—there is no reason to be around people who don’t have your best interests at heart.