With every new year, comes the opportunity to begin a new chapter. Be it the ‘new year, new me’ approach, or simply finally doing what you’ve been putting off the previous year – in my book, any healthy change is welcome.
These past two years have been the most transformative for me. I’ve improved my way of thinking, my way of going through life, as well as my overall lifestyle. And I couldn’t be happier. It hasn’t been easy – that’s for sure – but once I made the conscious decision to better myself, there was nothing holding me back.
Today, I want to run you though five of the healthy habits I’ll be taking with me in 2022 that help keep me grounded, content and on the right track health-wise. Let’s begin…
I don’t think I’ll ever not meditate from now on. It’s crazy to see how much this small practice that you can do anywhere can do for you.
Taking you back in time, I’ve given it multiple tries but it didn’t stick long-term – I think maybe I wasn’t in the right mind-frame at that time. But in 2020, I’ve really taken a step back from non-stop thinking, which is also what I think helped me best navigate through these past two years, and picked up this practice again. It was in a moment where I needed it the most.
I began with guided meditations because they’ve proven to work for me in the past and really get me into that meditative state. And slowly, I then started listening to calming music or high frequencies and meditate on my own, just quieting the mind in a safe space.
It’s one of the healthiest habits you could implement in your life for a moment of peace and relaxation and a much-needed pause from daily thinking.
Feeling stressed? Meditate.
Feeling anxious? Meditate.
Feeling overwhelmed by all your life responsibilities? Meditate.
Simply take 10, 15, 20 minute for yourself, as much as you can is enough, each day or a couple times a week, to really disconnect from the outside world and heal the inside. You will only reap the benefits, from relieving anxiety, de-stressing the mind and body, enhancing self-awareness and mind clarity.
I personally love meditating while laying down, palms facing up, with nice aromatherapy like lavender in my essential oil diffuser or a soy-wax candle burning nearby with patchouli and orange notes, and 528 hz frequencies playing in the background. Ah, so relaxing! I know what I’m doing after writing this post.
Try and test different methods and do what works best for you.
I can’t stress enough how important gut heath truly is. According to research in the Clinical and Experimental Immunology journal, around 70% of the immune system is housed in the gut. So, we need to take really good care of it.
Step one for me was to eliminate processed foods and embrace a more plant-focused diet along with mindful eating. What do I mean by mindful eating? Being fully present when eating, and paying attention to what you consume as well.
Along with plenty of fruits and veggies in my daily menu, I also include supplements to help support the good gut flora. For example, I love adding the Digestive Boost from Bioglan Superfoods, which I found in Holland & Barrett, to my porridge as it contains live bacteria, fibre and digestive enzymes.
Natural probiotics like cheese and yogurt are great, as well as spirulina in the morning. Then, I like to focus on natural prebiotics as well, so I include plenty of garlic, asparagus, leeks, onions, flaxseeds, oats and bananas in my diet.
In 2022, be more in tune with your body, listen and shower it with love and care.
*A quick note, if you suffer from bloating and gas, bad sleep, increased stress or skin irritations, make sure to talk to a specialist as it can be a gut heath-issue. Also do your research before embarking on a gut-healing process.
Drinking tea every day
I am an avid tea drinker. There’s not a day where I don’t drink at least two cups of tea, from Twinings’ fig and vanilla flavoured rooibos tea with ashwagandha root (an adaptogen which helps the body manage stress) for inner peace to the lemon balm and camomile tea with Tulsi for inner clarity.
I absolutely adore this ritual – it helps ground me in the present moment and relax. There are so many benefits from drinking herbal tea too, such as aiding digestion, reducing menstrual pain and muscle spasms, lowering cholesterol levels, fighting diseases, boosting energy levels and calming the body.
One thing that helped me boost my immune system was drinking plenty of ginger, lemon and turmeric tea. So, if you’ve got any heath issues, why not look up which tea is best to drink for it and give it a try?
Working out has become a hobby for me over the past years. But before, I used to only get off the couch and exhaust my body in the hopes of shredding weight. I had a weird love-hate relationship with the gym, I couldn’t stay consistent and that’s because it all come from the wrong intention.
So, I’ve left that mentality back in the past and started to give my body the right attention – I started falling back in love with myself. It’s all temporary, so why focus my energy on hating my body when I can take all the steps necessary to care of it?
A switch completely changed my view on working out. Now, I do it for my health. The way my muscles get defined and how my clothes lay on my body is just an added bonus that doesn’t enhance what daily movement does for my heath. And once that switch was made, I actually started to enjoy going to the gym up to a point where I couldn’t wait for rest days to be over and done so I can get back in the gym and make more progress, get even stronger.
It not only improved my physical shape but also my mental state, which is just as important in my eyes.
So 2022, for me, is all about getting stronger, healthier and practising daily movement, be it a 20 minute walk in the neighbourhood, a quick at-home workout, 10 minutes of stretching or a powerful gym session.
Writing has always been a passion of mine and I’ve managed to make a career out of it, too, thank God. So if you also enjoy writing, this practice is also right up your street – journaling.
Since I was seven years old, I’ve kept journals. Those soft-to-touch pages wrapped in a leathery cover with a colourful string keeping track of where I’ve left off, were one of my safe havens. I could write about anything and everything that came to mind, with no fear of judgement.
So, I’ve carried this practice with me to this day. Of course, with growing up, subject matters changed, and so now I’m focusing more on my gratitude lists, prompts for processing feelings and keeping track of memories rather than teenage-drama and melancholic quotes.
Journaling is an effective way of de-stressing at the end of the day, getting a boost of serotonin and understanding your feelings and reactions towards yourself and others, reflecting on life events, healing traumas and strengthening memory.
Have you bought a 2022 diary yet? Give journaling a try and see what you uncover.
I really hope you enjoyed this and will think about including at least one of these healthy habits in your life, too.
See you next week,