29 Dec New Years Resolution Nonsense
New Year’s Resolutions are so 2004. It’s time instead to let your human instinct lead.
As we end one year and prepare for another, there is a feeling of starting fresh and committing to something healthy. Most new years resolutions fail because they are too rigid, too all or nothing. And that’s not how progress works. Perfectionism isn’t real. It’s a seductive concept, but it’s not real. No one is perfect.
Instead of setting yourself up for failure with your lofty, rigid, well meaning goals of self-improvement, how about just take care of your basic human needs and try do a little better each day. 1% effort is better than no effort at all because you can’t do it all.
Here is my top 10 list for what we need to be healthy, happy humans.
1. WATER: That’s right, HYDRATE! Easiest way to get in a little more H2O? Drink a glass of water first thing in the morning. I like warm water with lemon. Stick to room temp or warm, lemon or other additions, or not. That way no matter what happens the rest of the day, you drank that big glass of water in the morning. Also, carry a water bottle around and drink throughout the day. Easy peasy.
2. SLEEP: What constitutes as enough will vary, but in general we could all use a little more sleep. Sleep is when your body repairs. It’s that blissful alone time in the cosmic realms. It’s a very necessary part of life. If you aren’t getting enough, find ways to get more of it. Impossible to get more sleep right now (new mom)? You’re going to be OK. You’re a badass, fierce, fantastic mama and this too shall pass.
3. NATURE: Nature is our natural habitat as human animals. Just like the pain you can see in a tiger who lives in a zoo, there is a disharmony that comes over humans who don’t spend enough time in nature. Nature is the mother. The healer of all wounds. The listener, mirror, and unconditional lover that can soothe our soul like no one else can. Simply get out in nature more. Just be with her, breathe her in, touch her skin, and see if you feel a little more human.
4. DANCE/MOVE: We have bodies. They need to be moved. Every culture on earth has a dance. I believe dance is as natural to humans as eating, sexing, and breathing. You do not need to be good at dancing to dance. You do not need to know a certain dance to dance. Just dance. And if dance is really not your thing, then move. Move your body……squat, crawl, jump, hang, slither, circle, slide, play. Just move. It’s what our bodies desperately need.
5. SING/MAKE MUSIC: Like dance, I believe singing is a basic human action and need. It doesn’t matter if you are good at singing, (for real I sound baaaad when I sing) it matters that you do it when you feel called. Follow your impulse. Music making is another way to scratch this itch, especially in groups. Not musical? Clap or stomp along, but do get yourself to places where music making is happening and see if you feel a little more connected to those around you.
6. RELAX: Busyness is the disease of our time. We are literally robbing ourselves of life and making ourselves sick from being too busy. And we can get addicted to busyness. Literally we can become addicted to the neurochemicals released from a constant sympathetic state of the nervous system. Resist the urge to take on more than you can manage. Make time for rest. Make relaxation a practice and a priority moving forward. Your nervous system, immune system, and many other systems will thank you.
7. COMMUNITY: We are mammals. We are pack animals. We are not meant to be alone and to do it all on our own. The presence of other people who are engaged together in some way matters! Isolation makes us more vulnerable to mental illness- depression and addiction at the top of that list. Social media is not the connection I’m speaking of here, I’m talking about real life, in real time, nervous system regulating, human to human connection.
8. EAT: Eat whole foods, including lots of fats. Eat often to keep your blood sugar stable. Stabilizing the blood sugar is step number 1 in regulating the rest of the endocrine system. Got hormonal imbalances? Regulate your blood sugar and see if that helps. This means eating within one hour of waking and continuing to eat small meals about every 4 hours throughout the day, although this will vary depending on your constitution and lifestyle. Make sure your meals have some protein and chill out on the sugar. Your liver and brain will thank you.
9. EXPRESS: As Madonna once said, “Express yourself!” Keeping it all bottled inside does no one good. Whether it’s your feelings, words, or inspiration, energy wants to be moved! That said, there is a fine line between containment and expression. You don’t want to verbally vomit or bombard someone in the grocery line with your deepest secrets. Discretion is needed. But more often than not I see people who are underexpressed. Except of course for Facebook rants. Practice taking that rant and expressing those sentiments to someone in real time. Or make art, cry, flail, laugh hysterically… Whatever it is, let it out!
10. PLEASURE: There is far too much to say about the magic of pleasure for one paragraph, so I’ll just leave it at pleasure is literally good for you on a physiological level. For real. It’s like a wonder drug, but more fun because you actually get to engage your senses to take in LIFE IN REAL TIME, aka presence, to experience it. Again, real human animal stuff. Sexual pleasure, you ask? Sure! Pleasure encompasses sexuality and can stand apart from it. Pick your path of pleasure, and keep it varied for maximum brain and body benefiting results.
Here’s to your happy, healthy, imperfect human experience, in 2018 and beyond!