Lifestyle Habits To Kick To Start The Year Right
Because we’re not getting any younger, so hopefully we’re a little wiser
Call it New Year’s resolutions, #lifegoals, or whatever you wish. The fact is we’re not getting any younger but we’re always trying to get it right, whether at home, at work or in any relationship. And while a reset is necessary from time to time (to assess our own hits and misses, and how else we can do better), there’s no better time than the New Year to do so because clean slate, right? It feels like all our past transgressions have been forgotten, and we get to start over and make things right. So herewith, lifestyle habits you need to get out of your system to start 2018 right.
Let’s start from the moment you wake up…
Don’t hit that snooze button because you know you’ll regret it later.
Many of us our guilty of this: alarm goes off, we hit snooze 1, 2, 3 times before you realize—wtf it’s almost x o’clock and you have to be at work in less than an hour. Do yourself a favor and get up the moment your alarm rings. Wash your face or brush your teeth right away so you don’t get tempted to go back to bed.
Coffee is life, we know. But all that caffeine can’t be good for you.
According to Mayo Clinic, “Up to 400 milligrams (mg) of caffeine a day appears to be safe for most healthy adults. That's roughly the amount of caffeine in four cups of brewed coffee, 10 cans of cola or two “energy shot” drinks.” Then again, caffeine content in beverages varies. Maybe instead of four cups of coffee a day, you can alternate it with decaf tea, like green tea?
RELATED: How Well Do You Know Your Coffee?
Don’t forget to eat.
It doesn’t have to be breakfast if you’re not a breakfast person (the scientists over at Popular Science haven’t quite decided if breakfast really is the most important meal of the day anyway). But when your body tells you it’s hungry, go get something substantial to eat. Sure, you have a deadline to meet or a report to send in. But is that really more important than your health? Listen to your body and don’t wait until your light-headed to get a meal.
To the time you get to work…
For god’s sake, check your emails.
Don’t be that person with 2,000++ unread emails or that other one that deletes everything. Check your inbox first thing when you get to work and sift through what’s important and what’s not. Email providers nowadays are able to filter promotion and social mails (like Gmail!), so it’s likely those messages in your inbox are quite important. For those that aren’t, just tick the box right beside it and mark as read. Then before the day ends, do one last sweep so you don’t miss out on anything.
Set a realistic to-do list.
Jot down or download a productivity app that suits you and list down everything that you need to get done in the next few days or week. Prioritize which ones are the most and the least important, so you don’t get overwhelmed. Also, be realistic about how much you can actually achieve in a day so you don’t set yourself up for failure. For some, focusing on three to five important tasks a day works!
Don’t ask people for things last minute.
Many of us Pinoys are guilty of doing things at the last minute and this, sadly, holds true for when we ask for things, like reports, from other people. Allow a two to three day lead-time so the other person has enough time to work on your request. They’ll appreciate the courtesy, too, so much so that sometimes you’ll get what you need the same day.
At work or IRL: own up to your mistakes, stop explaining and focus on finding resolutions.
Everybody makes mistakes. And if you did, own up to it, say sorry and offer ways to fix the problem instead of explaining yourself (unless of course the boss asks for an explanation). Make the effort to do better next time and do your best not to make the same mistake again.
Stop working, srsly.
You’ve checked all your emails, ticked off all if not most of the items on your to-do list. Stop working. Go home and spend time with your family or enjoy some me-time. Anything that isn’t urgent or a matter-of-life-and-death can wait the next day. After all, there is life outside of the office.
RELATED: Do You Live To Work Or Work To Live?
And after you’ve left the office…
Get your body parts moving.
Ideally, exercise should be done in the morning but for those of us who’d rather get the extra zzz’s and work out later, better commit to it. It doesn’t have to be an intense workout if that’s not your thing, simple stretches, an evening walk or some yoga will do you good (and hopefully offset all that sitting you’ve done all day).
Add some fruits and vegetables in your life.
Be it in shake form or actual fruits or vegetables, find a way to add it to your diet. It won’t kill you to do so, in fact it’ll do the opposite. Your body will benefit from the all that vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
RELATED: All The Reasons To Go Vegetarian
Stick to a drink or two and nothing more (unless it’s a special occasion?).
While studies suggest that a nightcap may hinder you from getting a good night’s sleep, sometimes you just need a drink or two before you can call it a day. But do so over dinner and not an hour before bedtime, and maybe stick to something light like beer or wine?
Get off your phone.
Seriously, let your eyes take a break from looking at your phone, gadgets or TV the whole day at least an hour before bedtime. Need more reasons? Studies show that “light given off by electronics affects our sleep health. The consensus is that the blue light that LED screens give off can slow or halt the production of melatonin, the hormone that signals our brain that it's time for bed.”
Set a bedtime ritual so your body knows it’s time for bed.
Like children, we need a bedtime ritual that conditions our mind and body for sleep. A warm bath, a cup of your favorite (decaf) tea, a good book, a sleep mask—make one that suits your lifestyle as well as your needs. And make sure you get enough rest so you don’t hit that snooze button the next day.
Got more ideas? Sound off on the comments section. Here’s to a better, happier you in 2018!