Nicky Park

Editor of Life & Style. Lover of green tea, lip gloss, being barefoot and thriving.

Nicky Park: Resolve to regularly resolve

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Feeling well and vital will help you get the most out of your day.Photo / Thinkstock
Feeling well and vital will help you get the most out of your day.Photo / Thinkstock

The new year can be packed full of pressure. Something happens, as the clock strikes midnight on December 31, when we decide it's time to make promises to ourselves. It's like the calendar has given us a clean slate and we have to make the most of it. 'New Year, New You' and all that.

Now, I'm a massive fan of self-improvement. But there's no way I'm going to emerge fuzzy-headed (often from a stuffy tent) on January 1 as a better version of myself. I prefer to take a chilled out approach to resolutions. One that comes more naturally and that I can reassess continually. I like to think about what I can add to my life that will make me feel happy and well, rather than being ruled by restrictions and feeling guilty and sheepish if I slip up. I like to go through a process of reflection, enhancement and resolution regularly and I find it really useful to scribble about it (often in this blog). Plus I have a few light-hearted goals on the to-do list just to keep things fun.

Holistic health expert Dr Libby Weaver says people tend to use the first few weeks of a new year for personal reflection on the back of a hectic silly season.

"(Around Christmas) you can start to feel a bit lousy but maybe you've already started to identify some areas that you really do want to change," Dr Libby says.

"So you use the change of the date to catapult you in to a new sphere where you think it's going to give you more opportunity to make change."

But Dr Libby echoes my thoughts: "It doesn't have to be at new year, it can be at any stage.

"It's really wise to review how you're going - whether you're happy with the way you're life is unfolding, if you're happy with your health, with your energy, with your mood, with the way you sleep, with your relationships, with your finances.

"I don't think necessarily it's a good thing to do at new year, I think it's a good thing to do on a really regular basis throughout your life.

"As you progress through life, the sooner you catch a habit, or a belief or a though process that's not serving you, as soon as you catch those you can make a change to it."

She says New Year's Resolutions are often not sustainable and has these tips for following through on personal goals:

* Make sure your goal is relevant to you. It has to have meaning and be attainable.
* Be specific about what you want to achieve. Saying you want to be healthier isn't clear enough. Do you want to get more sleep? Eat less sugar? Walk to work every day?
* Allow yourself to have enough physical energy to pursue the goals. If you feel good and vital you will feel more motivated.

Did you make any New Year's Resolutions? What are you focusing on at the moment?

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