A New Year, A New You!

As seen in the Tolosa Press:

A New Year, A New You Strategies for turning health resolutions into health revolutions

by Rex Stevens, DC

Talk is cheap. Resolutions seem to come and go as fast as the latest “end of the world” predictive saga and so with it a negative stain that drenches the remote glimmer of hope for a New Year filled with change. As I share with folks both in and out of the community I either receive an aghast response, “I can’t believe you actually make resolutions” or just a simple scowl followed by a sarcastic grunt suggesting that this fad ended long, long ago.

Call me naïve, but I’m fond of resolutions. To resolute is to imply action, move forward, progress, impart procedures, gather strategies, to have purpose. Who isn’t in search of these things? Of course we are all desperately seeking more of this. Families, businesses, churches, do I dare say governments all strive to make and meet goals, to improve, to build, to determine to do something that is better than the old way. The issue here is not the idea of resolutions, but clearly the implementation of them. Once we’ve chosen an issue we hope to resolve, how do we go about setting realistic goals, how do we set up a mechanism to stay accountable to them, and how do we measure if we are well on our way or better yet, if we veered left when we should’ve veered right.

Is it safe to say Americans are obsessed with health? We enroll in gyms, weight loss centers, stare at food labels, cling to the latest nutritional fads, and yet the statistics undeniably demonstrate we are a nation whose health and wellness is on the brink of a disaster. More heart disease, more cancer, more obesity, more diabetes, more depression, and more lifestyle related conditions that we just can’t seem to get a grasp on. Imagine if every New Year’s resolution that involved one’s health & wellness actually came true. Whether it be losing weight, laughing more, making time for me, committing more quality time with family, opening up to friends, sticking to a hobby, finding a career you love, going to bed earlier, or rising in the morning a bit more promptly, success in any resolution will breed abundant energy, positive vibes, and a richly heightened sense of humanism.

I’ve witnessed resolutions working on numerous occasions and have stolen a few tips through observing and sharing with those who emit success.

Journal – Writing simply put is just all too powerful. To have to think, transcribe, think, transcribe and then re-read what was put down on paper cannot go understated how impactual this habit is for success. The brain is so critically active when we write that it forces us to really delve into whatever we are engaged in. The misnomer is that writing takes too long. The length of what is written is not critical. What is crucial is that you are honest. One day you may be ecstatic, the next angry, and the next indifferent. The act of experiencing emotion and addressing it by taking a moment to write is arguably the number one thing anyone could do to ensure success in their resolution.

Add, Don’t Subtract – Let’s face it, nobody enjoys feeling as though they have to give up something they love. My suggestion is that you don’t, at least not at first. Start attacking your resolution by adding a healthy behavior prior to subtracting a poor one. Example: Rather than giving up your morning love for coffee immediately, start by adding a healthy food like a morning smoothie filled with kale, spinach, carrots, beets, etc. Through the simple action of addition, you’re less likely to experience emotional frustration and odds of sticking to the plan exponentially increase.

Get Up Early – Do you know anyone who wakes up early, spends quiet time in thought, prayer, meditation, or writing who you wouldn’t deem successful? Me either. Enough said.

Partner Up – For so many of us, finding someone seeking the same change as you can be so critical to your positive growth. We need someone to empathize with, bounce ideas off, struggle with, succeed with, and ultimately someone who will hold us accountable. Without at least one of these partners, your resolution doesn’t stand a chance.

If you haven’t done so yet, think positive, make a resolution, and select at least one method above (preferably all four) to ensure you succeed in 2011.

Rex Stevens, Chiropractor and Co-Owner of the SLO Wellness Center, strives to educate patients on how to increase longevity, enhance performance, and maximize human potential.

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