Top Five Life Changers for 2014

A Common Sense Approach To Your Goals

Well,  the new year has arrived and with it comes the January 1st phenomenon known as the new year’s resolution. We always start with high hopes and excitement, but typically end with disappointment, and a “there’s always next year” statement. This year let’s change things up a bit. Here’s our top 5 not so resolute resolutions that just about anyone can work into their life and stick to for all of 2014.

#1 Setting good goals: This is by far the most important element of making 2014 your best year ever. Setting good goals means thinking small, not big. It means thinking easy, not hard. It means taking the easy road, not the hard one. All too often we commit to huge monumental goals with the best of intentions, which almost always end in failure and defeat.
This year when you’re setting your goals,  aim for small, tiny, easy tasks you can commit to and achieve day in and day out. No matter how you slice it, small pieces will eventually add up to the big beautiful pie. This way you focus on small bite size pieces vs trying to shove the entire pie down your throat. Though admittedly this can be fun, it rarely ends well.

#2 Exercise: Ah yes the one thing just about everyone says they’re going to do each January that ends up a distant memory by February 15th. Gyms with 1 year memberships adore us, in fact we’re what keep them in business, but not this year. This year, all you want to commit to is the simplest activity possible, walking. That’s it. For 2014 commit to walking at least 30 minutes 4 days a week.
It doesn’t matter how you do it, just sneak it in. If you want to do more feel free, but for goal setting purposes commit to just 4, 30 minute walks a week. Feeling energetic, 2, 60 minute walks are just as good. Are there better exercise programs out there? Sure. Should you do them? Absolutely! But how about we start with baby steps? Stick with your walking routine for 6 months, then incorporate something else. There is no limit on what you can do, just take your time and gradually increase things if you like.

#3 Nutrition: Yeah,  nobody ever likes the nutrition stuff. Eating better just never seems to feel better on any level, until that is, you’ve been eating better for a little while and then try to eat the stuff you used to eat. Then you get hit with a wall of junk and will say to yourself, “I can’t believe I used to eat like this.” For 2014 all we want to do is incorporate some very simple yet highly impactful changes. #1 Drink a big glass of water each and every morning. #2 Get extra protein into your diet. This can be in the form of a protein shake throughout the day, and/or some eggs at breakfast, or lean meats any time throughout the day with your meals. #3 Eat more fruits and vegetables. Whether it’s simply incorporating an apple as a snack during the day, or a salad for lunch, you’ll be making a massive improvement in your health.

#4 Mindset: This is a big one. The amount of negative stuff we think about ourselves is staggering. This is especially true when we make mistakes or fall off the “I’m gonna get healthy” bandwagon.  For 2014 learn to forgive and forget. No matter what stupid thing you do, just smile, forgive yourself, hopefully learn from your mistake and move on to better days. The faster you snap out of any negative funk, the easier you will be able to stick to your newly minted healthy habits.

#5 FUN: This is arguably the most important change you can make for 2014. Have more fun. Each and every day make an effort to laugh, smile, to just enjoy yourself. This feeds right back into #4 mindset. When you have a little fun each day you’ll probably notice you smile more. When you smile more you’ll probably notice you feel better. When you feel better you’ll probably notice you don’t crave those comfort foods which typically are high in sugar or fat. When you avoid those comfort foods your moods will remain steady all day long. Without the sugar you won’t go through those massive mood swings or energy highs and lows. You’ll just plain feel better.

So there are your oh so easy top 5 changes for 2014 that will transform your life. They’re not huge changes, in fact they’re quite small and pretty easy for just about anyone to achieve, and that’s why they are so powerful.

Anyone can set impressive grandiose goals January 1st, and then quietly abandon them by February 15th. All you’re going to do this year is set some really small simple goals, and pat yourself on the back each and every day you stick to those goals.  Those little victories each and every day will drive you to the next. So here’s to keeping it small and keeping it real for 2014.

Steven Gyimesy is a writer and product researcher in the Canadian natural product and fitness industry.  Whether he’s on the trails racing mountain bikes, or taking the kids to the park, healthy living is a way of life he loves to share with everyone he meets.

Categories: Emotional Health & Wellness