By Lauren Cox of Closer To Your Food
The New Year is a time for change, new beginnings, and renewal. Aren’t we all a little tired of those stories? Every year we hear the same, tired stories, about eating better, exercising more, or writing that first novel.
Human beings often need an event like the New Year to give us a reason to accomplish things we’ve been putting off, but what if you didn’t really need a reason besides it’s just what you want?
As a working Mom with a full plate, I know how easy it is to get caught up caring for everyone else, focusing on work, and keeping the household together means your own
health and goals slip to the wayside. Often we feel guilty for making time for our wants and needs. It’s time to end that thinking. The New Year doesn’t need to be your excuse to start taking care of yourself, the best time to start is now.

Exercise

Not all exercise is created equal and everybody is different. You might be a slow and strong peaceful yogi like me, or a pumped-up and intense crossfit enthusiast. Whatever your pleasure, commit and do it now. The yoga studio/gym/hiking trail/zumba class/workout DVD/side walk are all waiting for you. Whatever little details are in the way of getting active, work them out. The yoga studio I go to offers childcare, but they wouldn’t watch my toddler on my membership so I called and changed my membership. Problem solved. Problem solved.

Diet

When I say ‘diet’, I don’t mean diet for four weeks to lose weight, I mean diet as in what you eat, all the time. You have to find what works best for you. To me, it’s all about balance and taking personal accountability.
My philosophy is eat clean, let Mother Nature keep things delicious, and eat mostly plants. When you do eat animals, make sure they aren’t sad ones which supports a deplorable meat industry. Lastly, be good to yourself. To me this means very little gluten, heirloom and organic produce, and lots of greens. Throw in a few grains, wild game meat, fish, and of course, a piece of Grandma’s pecan pie during the holidays–followed up with an extra long walk.
If you have ever been on a diet my guess is the weight has come back unless you chose to make a lifestyle change. Lifestyle diet change is a long-term key to success. Try finding inspiration. Of course I’m partial to this wonderful little website called Closer To Your Food [www.closertoyourfood.com], but find people who inspire you with food and follow their protocols for help and inspiration.

Life

Feeling incomplete or stuck in certain areas of your life? Join the club. It’s just part of being human. Take time to examine where you’re really struggling and what would make a difference in those areas. Seek help. Whether it’s meditating, clearing your head at yoga or working with a psychologist, we all need a healthy outlet for our emotions. Breaking through some of the places that have been stagnant can create amazing transformation and motivation for you. You’re not alone in your struggles, reaching out is where meaningful change begins.
Remember, it all starts now. Try breaking those old habits. You will do so and fail, the key is to keep trying. The world does not need a new you this New Year. The world needs you, flaws and all, now.