Happy New Year! Have you decided on your resolution for the upcoming year yet? Instead of setting an unattainable resolution that you may find discouraging to keep, try setting a few that you can work on throughout the year. All of the goals listed below are great suggestions for resolutions that will positively impact your lifestyle.
Losing weight seems to be a reoccurring new year’s resolution for many, but staying fit should be a goal that you can keep up with all year long. Sticking to a healthy diet and exercising a few times a week will help you feel better about yourself, enhance performance while at work, and leave you feeling energized. Instead of crash dieting and working out for the first few months of 2013, focus on losing or maintaining your weight slowly by creating manageable goals. If you’re looking to trim down this year, start by incorporating healthier meal choices into your diet and going to the gym twice a week. Overtime you will find it easier to make healthier food choices and enjoy exercising on a regular basis. Make staying in shape over the upcoming year fun by challenging yourself while burning calories. Step out of your comfort zone by attending fitness classes such as: Spinning, Zumba, or Hot Yoga with a friend or co-worker. Depending on your fitness level and schedule, create a set of fitness goals that include new workout routines on a bi-weekly or monthly basis.
While we all have schedules that are time sensitive, one resolution for the year that most of us could use is getting a few extra hours of sleep when possible. Going to bed and waking up at the same time will help you feel fully rejuvenated and ready to tackle what the day has to offer. One way to extend your hours slept every night is to establish a common bedtime. Instead of making the abrupt change to your sleep schedule all at once, work towards your new bedtime in 15 or 30 minute increments each day until it feels regular. If your busy schedule simply does not allow for a regular sleep pattern, try napping when you have an extra hour or two to spare. Short naps can help you unwind and regain your energy after a long work day or sleepless night. A study conducted by NASA has discovered that napping for 40 minutes can significantly increase mental alertness by up to 100%. Shorter naps of 20-30 minutes offer more energy than a cup of coffee or an intense cardio workout. Napping has also been proven to improve your overall mood by increasing your body’s serotonin levels. Serotonin aids in helping us feel calm and relaxed, a short nap could leave you feeling could be just what the doctor ordered after a long work day.
Let’s face it; the best of us could be more productive from day to day. We all work in a unique manner, but the key to success is prioritizing what tasks should be completed before others. Keep an organized list or daily calendar that will help you assess what assignments should be completed before others. Deadlines usually make us work harder; create deadlines for projects of higher importance for motivation. At work, check emails throughout the day instead of all at once, this will help you respond in a quicker manner when questions or tasks are recent. Take short mental breaks by stretching or catching up with a co-worker for a few minutes to gather your thoughts and feel refreshed. If needed, stay at work for an extra 15 minutes at the end of the day to set up your to-do list for tomorrow.
Make conscious efforts to save more money in the new year. There are a countless number of websites and Smartphone apps that can assist you in your attempts, such as: Mint.com, Smarty Pig, and Debt Free. If you are serious about acquiring a larger savings account this year, consistency is key. Use your credit cards minimally and only for larger purchases that are necessary, high interest rates can leave you with outstanding balances that can negatively affect your credit overtime. Establishing a savings budget is another great way to remain on track. Start with a small amount and increase your budget on a monthly basis by small increments of $20, $50, or $100. If you have a 401(k) plan at work, try increasing your contribution to see a significant increase in your account without having to part with your earnings upon receiving your paycheck. Most importantly, make your purchases carefully and always remember that you could probably hold back on a few items at your next trip to a grocery store or the mall.