Let’s face it this time of year kind of sucks, the weather, for most of us, keep getting colder and colder, to the point where you don’t even want to go outside. The year just started but we’ve already lost sight of our very ambitious new year’s resolutions, or we’ve stuck to them but the progress isn’t as visible or quick as we thought it may be. So, we sit there scrolling through Instagram torturing ourselves with a newsfeed full of tropical vacations, self-proclaimed Instagram models, and lavish “things,” causing us to sink deeper and deeper into our funk.
I get it, I’ve been there too and each year I have to dig myself out, refocus and charge forward. Now if I may be cliché for a minute, life truly is what we make it. However, it takes A LOT of practice to make it consistently positive. I’ll admit it’s not easy and some days are much harder than others, but we must push on. So here are few things I do to help keep myself out of a funk, and ensure my days, weeks, months and life are always meaningful.
1. Create a Vision Board.
It’s never too late, or too early to set goals and start reaching for them. Your vision board is yours so get creative, what I like to do is brainstorm a list of goals I want to reach within the next year, and then look through old magazines to find an inspirational clipping to showcase my goal. It’s really a win-win when you think about it, those old magazines you can’t seem to get rid of finally have a use, and the diversity of images in them will give you all the encouragement you need to create a beautifully artistic vision board.
2. Get a hobby.
Start by asking yourself what you are passionate about. From there, think through how you can incorporate that into your days more. For me, writing is a hobby, so I challenge myself to write for 15 minutes a day, about literally anything. This exercise helps me destress, hone my writing skills, and think more creatively. When was the last time you lost track of time doing something you love? Was it taking pictures, painting, fashion blogging, cooking, ice skating, reading, whatever it may have been, start introducing it into your daily or weekly routine? Soon enough you’ll start to notice your days are more productive and you’re smiling more.
3. Work out.
Now I know this isn’t a new one for any of you, but honestly, I don’t understand why more people don’t take advantage of it. Scientists, psychologists, and athletes have all shared the positive impact exercising regularly has had on them, both mentally and physically. And when we break it down it makes sense, exercising releases endorphins, which are the feel-good hormones in your brain, allowing you to de-stress from your day, sweat out toxins, sleep better, and keep you on your A game. If that’s not enough of a reason to get your butt moving, regular exercise can also help lower your blood pressure and cholesterol, and make you stronger, all which will help you live longer. HELLO, who doesn’t want that!
4. Drink more water.
The health benefits of water are astronomical, you know the deal 8 glasses a day, so just do it! Need it to have a taste? Infuse it with fruits, add some flavoring, challenge yourself to chug a glass every hour, whatever you need to do get that shit in your system! I won’t say much more than that, but trust me, being hydrated can make all the difference in how you feel, how motivated or sluggish you are, how you sleep, and even how you look.
5. Try a food-specific detox.
It’s crazy how much food impacts our moods and yet we have no idea. For me, too much sodium and my day will be instantly ruined. Suddenly I’m uncomfortable, I feel bloated, unmotivated and extremely tired. And if that’s not enough, fair warning to anyone that may cross my path because chances are I’m a bit more on edge or quick to snap. Now I look at the sodium count in the foods I’m eating, and if it’s high, I opt for a different snack and trust me it makes all the difference. So, my advice, start playing around with the different foods you have on a regular basis, see which foods may trigger what types of emotions and/or physical states. You’d be surprised to see what a difference a balanced diet can make and you may even see yourself shed some lbs or inches. However, only cut out one food at a time, you need a “food” constant to truly understand what foods in your current diet impact you and how.
Now that you have the tools and resources necessary to de-funk yourself, the only thing left is to start doing. I encourage you to try even just one of the ideas mentioned above and I promise you’ll start to notice a difference. But a word to the wise, don’t be so hard on yourself either, Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither were you. Give yourself time, find what works, and run with it. And I’ll leave you with this, next time you feel like you’re in a funk just think “Every Monday is like a mini New Years,” it’s a chance for you to recharge, reset, and refocus your efforts on what matters most.