5 healthy & attainable habits to adopt in 2020, including tips for better sleep, becoming more mindful, improving dietary habits, & more!
Today I wanted to chat about some healthy & attainable habits to adopt throughout 2020. I’m all about creating & implementing things for longevity. If you are consistent with your habits, one day you’ll wake up & they’ll become a seamless part of your day, which is basically the end goal! Below are 5 habits that will not only benefit your overall wellbeing & health, but they will tap into bettering your emotional & mental well being as well!
The healthy & attainable habits I’ve mentioned here, are pretty open for you to take what you like, hopefully implement it in your own life, where you see fit, & leave whatever doesn’t resonate with you. I too am working on a few of these habits in 2020 – especially the portion on sleep, which I’ll talk a little more about down below!
Each habit is complete with resources to best assist you in working towards implementing the habit within your life. I tried making them extremely reasonable things to achieve & actually do. Because no one want to introduce habits that seem impossible, am I right? I also have a post on 5 easy ways to cultivate strong habits, which might be the next post you check out if you find something here that speaks to you!
Alright, let’s get into it!
5 habits for improved health & overall wellbeing in 2020!
1. Implement Stillness
We live in a fast paced world. Everything is go go go. And I even think there is some misconception that we need to be doing everything a million miles a minute in order to be successful or just to simply get things done. It’s definitely not easy to slow down & make time to be still, especially when we know there’s millions of things that need to be done – I too, am SO guilty of always thinking this!
For me, yoga has been the biggest teacher when it comes to me slowing down, focusing on my breath, tuning in with how I’m really feeling, & just overall being mindful in the way I live & the way my body moves. It’s been huge for me. My personality isn’t overly active, I’m quite the introvert actually, but my mind is the thing that has a hard time being “still.”
Understanding that it is okay to slow down, to be still, or do something that calms or centers you, is a great habit to cultivate this new year. Maybe it’s going for a daily walk, maybe it’s reading a book, maybe it’s driving in your car listening to your favorite song, whatever it is, do it. Be still. Force yourself to sit still. Calm your mind. Calm your body. And I can almost guarantee you will reap the benefits.
Something that I also want to dive into this year, related to this habit, is Stoicism. I linked some great resources below, including The Daily Stoic which is basically a meditation for each day of the year on wisdom, perseverance, & the art of living. I’ve been hearing a lot about it lately, especially from The Skinny Confidential, who raves about it! So I’ll keep you all posted if I decide to dive in!
Tips for Implementing Mindful Stillness:
- Try meditating for 5-10 minutes a day, my favorite guided mediation resource is a free app called Insight Timer, you can also read my post on how I meditated everyday for a month last year for some more tips!
- Light a candle, make a cup of tea, & just be still (p.s. my favorite brand of candles is Otherland, they’re amazing!)
- Watch this Yoga with Adriene video for implementing stillness – I highly recommend anything from her channel!
2. Focus on Whole Foods
Have you seen the latest news about the so called, “better alternative” option at Burger King called the Impossible Burger?! Well if you haven’t, it’s basically a soy-based patty that looks & kinda tastes like actual beef. But want to know the best part? This “healthier plant based” alternative was found to contain 44mg of estrogen – HELLO HORRIBLE! Not to knock anyone who has had one…I’ll admit, I’ve had one! But just because something is labeled as healthy or plant based, doesn’t make it the best option!
Real whole foods is what us as consumers should be focusing on. More vegetables, more leafy greens, more raw nuts & seeds, more things that grow from the ground! As you may or may not know, I’ve been vegan for over a year & it never has or will be my intention to push those beliefs onto someone else, but I do truly believe the less animal protein you consume, the better your health will be! Take that as you will, but that is what I’ve come to believe.
Everything these days comes out of a box, is heavily processed, modified, drenched in canola oil, with so much added salt, extra additives, & sugar, not to mention, all of the artificial sweeteners, preservatives, dyes, & flavors adding to everything! GMOs, high fructose corn syrup, soy, hydrogenated oils, MSG, & nitrates…it’s hard to keep everything straight! Keep it simple & consume the wholesome incredible foods that come from our Earth – I promise your health will thank you!
Tips for Focusing on Whole Foods
- If you can’t read/pronounce an ingredient – DON’T EAT IT
- Implement a plant based dinner at least once a week
- Fill your fridge with seasonal produce & limit processed foods or anything that comes from a box
Below are three really great resources/channels on YouTube to learn how to put together meals using whole foods & real ingredients. Each channel has their own unique approach & I’ve learned so much from all three women – I highly recommend! Downshiftology is the only channel below that is not strictly vegan or plant based, but she does have wonderful vegan, gluten free, & dairy free recipes using incredible ingredients.
3. Prioritize Sleep
This is an area that I really want to commit to working on this year & beyond. I am a night owl. Always have been too. I would MUCH rather do things at night, compared to doing them in the morning. But the more I educate myself & try to further my own personal health journey, I’ve come to understand the importance of sleep & how much our bodies truly need it.
Now I’m not missing out completely on sleep, I actually sleep very well once I do fall asleep, but I do want to find a routine of going to sleep & waking up at a consistent time, because usually I’m all over the place! I’m not sure if you’ve ever heard or looked into Circadian Rhythms but basically, it’s a rhythm that regulates our sleep-wake system. To simply put it, being asleep during proper circadian rhythms are really crucial for healing, as well as, many other overall health benefits.
When we miss out on sleep, we basically cause more harm than good to our bodies. We NEED sleep & most of us are not getting enough of it!
Tools for better sleep:
- Use a nighttime essential oil blend, or lavender EO in a diffuser to help unwind at the end of the day
- Put a salt-lamp on your night stand – this was huge for me! I believe it really helped improved the quality of my sleep & how rested I felt upon waking!
- If you do a lot of work on a computer & or phone, or just scroll on your phone before you go to sleep (like many of us do…I know, SUCH a bad habit!) wear blue light glasses to help your eyes & brain get a little break & begin to wind down.
- Try using a weighted blanket if you experience night-time anxiety! Thankfully, I no longer deal with anxiety that disrupts my sleep, but I have been using my brother’s weighed blanket since being in FL & I really love it!
4. Be Mindful of Where, How, & With Whom, You Spend Your Time/Energy
Have you ever heard the quote…you are a direct representation of the 5 people you associate with most? Who are you spending time with? Do those people better you? Do they challenge you? Or do they influence you to do things that don’t contribute to your growth as a person.
We all have 24 hours in each day. Where you spend your time matters. You can either utilize your time to better your health, better your surroundings, better a skill of yours, or you can sit back & watch the time pass you by.
It’s okay to say no. It’s okay to be cautious of where we spend our time & energy. After all, once we spend it, we can’t get it back.
Helpful Tips for Better Time Management
- Time Blocking is a really effective way to get things done in a set amount of time. No distractions, just work for a dedicated amount of time on one specific thing…stop, & then move onto the next task.
- Schedule out your day/week/month in a way that works for you – my preferred method is a physical planner that I write in – I LIVE by my planner, this year I went with a Lilly Pulitzer 2020 planner, I personally loved how spacious it was!
- Be mindful of your limits & give yourself necessary time to recharge
5. Ditch The Chemicals
Unfortunately there are chemicals everywhere we look. They might seem harmless, but the reality is, the chemicals around us, in our daily lives are making people sick. Allergies, skin conditions, cancer, hormone imbalances, thyroid issues, gut issues, anxiety, headaches, infertility, you name it…the common chemicals in our daily lives are contributing to it!
Below are some VERY common places where harmful chemicals are most likely hiding.
Common places for chemicals:
- Laundry Detergent
- Household Cleaning Supplies
- Air Fresheners
- Flame Retardants
- Non-stick cookware
- Body & personal care products
- Feminine hygiene products
- & MORE
Other blog posts/resources that might be of interest:
- Why I love using Beautycounter
- My thoughts on clean beauty
- Why switching to a natural deodorant is so important
- How Norwex changed the way I clean
- The Never List
So there you have it…five habits to benefit your overall well-being, complete with attainable tips & resources that will continue to assist you throughout the New Year & beyond!
Is there a healthy habit here that speaks to you? Let me know in the comments below!