While I regularly set myself challenges, I wouldn’t normally couch these as resolutions. For a variety of reasons, this New Year seemed like a good time to make a few changes to the way I live day to day. So, here they are, my 2023 New Year Resolutions. I started attending to these when the holiday season ended and the weekly work routine returned, so a few days into January. As the month progresses these are still my aims.
Cut back on my daily wine and crisp habit
I see no reason to do Dry January or turn teetotal but cutting back a bit seemed like a good idea. The plan is not to indulge in an evening tipple (with accompanying salty snack) on a majority of days each week. So far this has been easy enough to accomplish although I find myself wanting to go to bed earlier and then taking ages to fall asleep.
Cut back on watching TV shows that are little more than time fillers
I am rarely impressed by what Netflix and Amazon Prime offer (these are all we subscribe to) but still find myself regularly tuning in as a wind down before bed. Life is too short to waste time in this way. Again, I’m not stopping my viewing entirely but am spending more evenings reading – a more satisfying endeavour but not one that relaxes me as mostly bland TV series do.
Introduce daily stretches to my routine
My weekly exercise routine leave me feeling quite achy on most days as various muscle groups are worked. Although I would have stretched off anyway, what I’m trying to do here is ensure I do at least 20 minutes of yoga type poses to aid body weight strength and flexibility every day. Have no idea if it’s doing me any good but it is an opportunity to focus on how my body feels and gently push what it can do.
Eat more unadulterated foodstuffs
More raw fruit and lightly cooked vegetables, fewer sauces from jars and so on. We all know that manufacturers add salt, sugar and other ingredients to encourage that moreish desire for processed food. It pleases me to think I’m not succumbing to their dastardly plans.
Cut back on carbs
Carbs are not bad – few foods are, intrinsically. However, my digestive system always feels better when not overloaded – probably an age related thing.
Exercise outside every day
If not going for a run or a strength session at the gym, go for a walk. 10,000 steps a day may be an arbitrary measure but getting outside is a proven pick me up, whatever the weather.
Make an effort to contact friends
Since the first lockdown changed the social perspective of so many, I have been negligent in getting together with friends. Some seemed genuinely concerned about being in the vicinity of other people. Others felt it necessary to follow whatever changing rules were suggested without questioning consistency and efficacy. It was easier just to let them do their thing and stay away. This has resulted in me losing touch with people I care about. I have therefore set myself the task of suggesting get togethers. We shall see who remains interested in spending time with me. Thus far I have enjoyed one chatty walk with a local friend I used to walk with weekly – a good catchup I hope we will repeat.
Blogging should be fun, not a chore
I need to remind myself that few will notice if my blog posts aren’t published with the regularity I’ve got used to achieving over the years. There are only so many hours in the day and I have many other things I want to achieve as well – see above.
Lest any of you fear I have set myself up to live a life of asceticism, I am cutting down rather than cutting out. If I end up snacking on cheese and crackers, or pick up a slice or three of pizza, that’s okay. If husband feels sociable I might open a bottle of wine midweek. Nothing is banned. If I feel the need for a rest day I will take one. What I am trying to achieve is a better balance, breaking habits I’ve fallen into for no good reason.
I know a lot of people decry New Year resolutions as setting one’s self up to fail. A few weeks in and these seem to be going well enough to continue trying. We shall see what happens as the year progresses.
So much better to make small changes than ambitious resolutions which are inevitably broken. Good luck!
This is so inspiring Jackie!
I like your approach of cutting back rather than cutting out – and I expect you’ll achieve your resolutions where many fall by the wayside.