December – the best or the worst?
2020 may not have turned out as expected so far, but hey, there is still 1 month to go and we think this is an excellent time to explore what we can do to improve our wellbeing – let’s set ourselves for an amazing start of 2021! Are you with us?!
December may seem like the worst month to start introducing any changes to your lifestyle, but in fact, it is one of the best ones:
- Starting in December means you’re already ahead of the game for all those who want to start on January 1st!
- Starting in December means you can start with a small, simple change – preparing yourself (your mind and your body) for more in the year to come.
- If you make it through December (the month of indulgence, gifts, feasts and celebrations) then nothing will stop you!
Remember, you don’t have to go all the way changing your lifestyle completely in one go. Take it a step at a time. Here are some ideas you can try throughout December:
Drinking a glass of warm water with lemon juice or mint leaves in the morning.
Many of us don’t drink the recommended amount of water throughout the day. Drinking a glass of warm water with lemon juice or mind leaves in the morning (ideally around 30minutes before breakfast) is a great way to start the day. It will help wake up your body and digestive system and prepare it for the day (the fact that the water is warm helps to give it a gentle start and won’t cause you stomach cramps, don’t drink the water ice cold!). It will help wake you up, too! A squeeze of lemon juice is packed with vitamin C which helps your immune system (up to half a lemon can be squeezed into your morning glass of water, more of it can cause acid reflux but just see what works best for you!).
15 minute of stretching before bed
Majority of the population these days suffer from cramps, pains and often more serious injuries caused by muscle tension and contractions. Stretching every day will help you alleviate these problems and make your body feel better overall. It will also help you relax and unwind before bed. 15 minutes is a good start – it’s a good enough amount of time to bring about positive effect on your body and it’s also a short enough amount of time to be achievable as your first step for improved wellbeing.
30 minutes of no screen time before bed
You may have heard of the blue light effects before. Blue light is the type of light emitted from our phones, computers and tv screens. Any light during the naturally dark hours of the night can have a negative effect on your sleep. According to Harvard Medical School, some studies even suggest “ a link between exposure to light at night, such as working the night shift, to diabetes, heart disease, and obesity”1! However, blue light affects your sleep more powerfully. That’s why in order to prepare your body for a good night’s sleep, it’s a great idea to cut out exposure to blue light for at least 30 minutes before sleep. That means no tv, no phone, no computer. So set your alarm, get into your pj’s and jump into bed. You can then read a book or a magazine, write a journal or perhaps listen to some relaxing music to help you ease down into sleep. 30 minutes of me-time – doesn’t that just sound lovely?
5 minutes of massage to improve the feel of your skin
Here’s one for those who would like to focus on the appearance of their body. Have you ever heard of dry brushing? It’s a method of massage with a brush which has been proven to have amazing effects on your skin. Sometimes the most simple techniques can have incredible effects! Just 5 to 10 minutes a day (before shower, either morning or evening) can help make your skin feel smoother and more firm; a lot of people also report a reduction in cellulite! Bear in mind that you may need to buy the brush and prices vary from £6 to even £30. You can read more about dry brushing here.
Of course, there are other, more traditional, things you can try, too such as: less or no sweets for a month (now that’s a challenge for the Christmas season!!), walking every day, exercise 3-5 times a week and others.
One thing we recommend – whichever challenge you choose to go for – is to print out or draw out a one-page calendar when you can mark your progress. It’s an amazing tool to help you stay motivated and power through the month! ?
So, will you give yourself a challenge for December and stay ahead of the game (ahead of the New Year’s resolutions team)? Which challenge are you going to try? Let us know in the comments!