The future is an adventure awaiting. Each morning we are given the gift of renewal, a chance to begin afresh and the ability to authenticate our dreams. Today we want to encourage you to be courageous and follow your dreams. We have assembled a guide of basic goals that can lead to profound gratification as you conquer your new adventure....
1. Think A Positive Thought
Throughout the day we easily get side tracked with the negatives of the day. In the morning we have the ability to choose to set our mind on the positive. Choosing to focus on the positive in the morning will condition your mindset to remain positive throughout the entire day. For me, I like to spend a couple minutes in prayer. Prayer allows me to connect with my creator, the source of joy even when I’m feeling overwhelmed. Making an effort to think even a small lovely thought each morning will renew your mind and transform your day, week, month and year.
2. Be Active
There are countless ways to incorporate physical activity into your day. There are days when going to the gym makes me want to crawl under my sheets and hide. On those days I take my dog for a long walk around the neighborhood. Fresh air and the beauty of nature is invigorating for the mind, body and soul. If your day is packed and you don’t have extra time to workout try incorporating a small activity into your normal schedule. For example, take the stairs instead of the elevator whenever you have the option. Physical activity is important and these are easy ways you can incorporate it and make it a habit.
3. Nourish Your Body
Instead of focusing on all the new ways to lose weight, learn what foods will nourish your body. I apply a 75:25 approach to eating. This means that when choosing my meals I select 75 percent of healthy foods that will nourish my body and then the other 25 percent I indulge in my favorite treats. This is a great way to focus on giving your body the vitamins and minerals it requires while not being restricted to counting calories or denying yourself a particular food. With fewer restrictions, this way of eating makes it much easier to stick to a healthy plan, lose weight and implement long-term changes.
4. Get Beauty Rest
Getting your beauty rest is as important as eating healthy and exercising. At times we forget that sleep is an important way to take care of ourselves. It is important for us both physically and emotionally to get enough sleep. Research shows that not getting enough sleep can lead to decline in health and weight gain. That means the proper amount of sleep can not only improve your health but also help you lose weight. I try to get to bed at a reasonable hour but during filming it's hard to have a set routine. Naturally I would say I'm a night owl but I’ve learned that going to bed earlier can benefit you physically and emotionally. I like to incorporate little routines like a nightly devotion, lighting candles, and misting my pillow with peppermint and lavender. Making a commitment to get your beauty rest will allow you to be ready to conquer the world each morning.
5. Give Compassion
Compassion is a non-judmental emotion that we can give to show genuine love to others. Showing compassion can benefit you emotionally, physically and spiritually. Compassion is a great way to bring happiness to others and yourself. Research suggests that compassion isn’t something you’re born with or not. Instead, it can be strengthened through targeted exercises and practice. Tips to show compassion are: treating others as we wish to be treated, showing kindness and understanding. and putting others before ourselves. There are countless ways to show compassion and lend a hand in your community. We can achieve some of our greatest fulfillment from being connected to others and giving compassion.
6. Go Gadgetless
These days, logging an overwhelming number of hours on our computers, laptops, smartphones, and iPads seems to be the norm. Take an hour to disconnect from the digital world and reconnect with yourself, your family and your friends. Try keeping your phone on silent during dinner or on your walk. We are naturally social beings and despite having social networks, taking the time to share a cup of tea with a friend can be extremely rewarding. Technology can't offer you the emotional and moral support, and encouragement that your friends and family can give you. Take the time to truly connect with those around you and yourself.
7. Balance Your Sugar Intake
We are swimming in sugar. Sugar is not only addictive but it also drains your energy and can lead to serious health complications. Many foods contain a surprising amount of sugar and we don’t even know it. Next time you are at the store read the ingredient list and look for words like fructose, dextrose, molasses and syrup. A great way to minimize your sugar intake is by purchasing plain foods and sweetening them yourself. You can also trade sweetened treats for naturally sweet fruits. Try to cut out soda and replace it with infused water or antioxidant teas. Eat less sugar…. you are already sweet enough!
8. Take A Book Adventure
Have you read a book, or a substantial magazine article recently? Do your daily reading habits center around tweets, facebook updates, or the directions on how to install your software update? Reading has a significant number of benefits, such as: mental stimulation, stress reduction, vocabulary expansion, memory improvement, stronger analytical skills, improved focus and concentration, better writing skills, tranquility and entertainment. Since graduating I have realized how important reading is and that taking a book adventure can be a great stress reliever. We love reading so much that we have started a book club as a way to connect and share new experiences with you.
9. Be Still
It is easy to get bombarded with activity and noise. Embracing quietness is soothing to the soul and spirit. We easily get distracted by the noise around us that we miss the beauty around us. The daily stimulation of emails, phones, and distractions can bring stress. Being still is the best antidote. Taking the time to breathe and relax can boost your immune system and attitude. For me during stillness I put aside the clutter of day and let the quiet voice of God teach me to know, perceive, understand, discern and distinguish Truth. Try taking 15 minutes out of your day to be still and discover the beauty around you.
10. Take Your Dreams Seriously
If you can dream it then you can do it! Every great achievement began in the mind of a person. They had a dream and believed that it was possible to achieve. Take some time to allow yourself to dream, don’t let negative thinking discourage you. Instead describe your dream in detail. By defining your dream you will be able to give your dream a purpose. A dream come true requires action. Do something every day that puts you a step closer to achieving your dream. Pursue your dreams!
What goals are you making this year?
May your year be filled with an abundance of love.
Image: Kathleen Kamphausen