After a month of overscheduling – and a little overindulging – January is a time to regroup, refresh, and recharge. By the end of the first week of a new year, you likely know what your goals are, if you’ve decided to set any.
But how do we ease ourselves into a brand new chapter during the weirdest month of the year? A month when we’re typically dealing with a stress hangover, bank balance trauma, and maybe feeling less physically fit?
It’s easy to think, GO, GO, GO! after setting a bunch of new goals. But it’s important to set yourself up in the right way before diving into things. That means being mindful about setting new intentions, and breaking goals down into achievable chunks. Taking the time to recharge intentionally is a great way to set yourself up for success over the next 12 months.
Since I’ve been feeling really introspective and craving a lot of down time, I thought I would share the things I’m doing to recharge this January. By focusing on cultivating wellness and a sense of equanimity, these habits will help support me as I work on achieving my other goals this year. These things may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but they work for me, and could be worth trying if you haven’t already!
Rise and breathe
Meditation is something I’ve practiced on and off for a few years. Last year, I stopped practicing for several months in a row, and found it harder and harder to make time for it. Towards the end the year, it was really challenging for me to calm my brain down – so much so that I had trouble focusing and sleeping.
I know that meditation has helped me feel more balanced in the past, so I’ve started meditating again for 10 minutes every morning right after waking up. Even that short amount of time makes a big difference in how I approach my day and relate to the outside world. I still love using the Headspace app for their guided meditations. Their “Change” pack is exactly what I need to start the new year. If you’re at a loss at where or how to start, I’d recommend this one!
Get down, dog
Yes, I know you knew I would mention yoga. But how could I not? For avid yogis and skeptics alike, I’d highly recommend giving Yoga with Adriene a try. Adriene Mishler is a YouTube Hatha yoga sensation. When I’m practicing at home, I’ll typically pick one of her videos to follow along with.
Here’s the exciting part: Every January, she has a free month-long yoga camp to help us all connect with ourselves during the start to the new year. This year’s is my favorite one yet! Her Revolution: 31 Days of Yoga is a perfect example of her approach – warm, funny, refreshing, and real. I love getting her daily emails with insights into the day’s practice. The sessions are so good they just whizz by, so motivating myself to get on the mat every day hasn’t been that tough. I prefer to end my day with these videos to wind down, but they’re great at any time. You’ll feel refreshed no matter what. Sign up to the 31-day Yoga Revolution with Yoga with Adriene, and get a downloadable calendar (so much fun to check the days off!) and a daily email.
Read a little read
It’s safe to say that I’m never without a book. I have relatively limited free time to focus on reading, but I have a few nonfiction selections that look interesting enough to wind down with. Right now, I’m reading Thrive by Arianna Huffington. It was a Christmas gift (thank you, you know who you are!) that is perfect for inspiration on how to live your best life. In addition to reading more enlightening books, I’ll be enjoying each one fully instead of just working to check things off my reading list. Being mindful about anything you do makes all the difference.
See it and believe it
I created a little vision board at the start of this year to keep my goals right where I can see them. If you’ve been struggling to keep track of what it is you want to accomplish, don’t underestimate the power of a visual reminder. Spend some time brainstorming, or check the list you’ve already made, and start cutting and sticking some things onto your wall, bulletin board, or fridge – anything that you see every day! Create different sections for health, finance, relationships, career and hobbies, etc. It’s a fun way to start the year off on the right foot, and will keep you on track while making decisions.
One thing I won’t be doing are detoxes or cleanses of any kind. I prefer to focus on healthier, gentler, and more sustainable ways to living your best life – but nutritionally and otherwise!
I hope these you’ve found these tips helpful. Let me know if you try any of these things out. I’d love to know how they’ve worked for you!