Just say no to January first…to the “start fresh” imagery it so often connotes, that is. At the beginning of every new year we see all the health club ads glut every television channel, Facebook page, magazine and online news feed. We cringe seeing the 30-day and 90-day trial offers splashed about. We laugh at the newest fad diets that promote chia seeds and coconut. We ponder, yet again, that maybe this is the year to finally lose those 20 pounds.
Seize the day! Carpe diem! Just do it! There are so many mottos out there to latch on to.
If we actually reflect back on the past, we would quickly recall that we never did achieve our perfect wellness goals in the first six weeks of this past year. Or the first six months, for that matter. It’s just that the siren call of New Year’s Day is so eternally part of our culture, despite the fact that it is really just ephemeral at best.
I recently read a humorous article in Real Simple magazine, in the January 2018 edition no less. It was entitled “The Struggle is Real – Diets of the Near Future,” by Lenore Skenazy. The author opined about The Pre-Paleo Diet (cavemen were fat like The Flintstones, so just eat like a one-celled organism instead), The Mediterranean Vacation Diet (wear a bikini for inspiration), The Sand Diet (use sand, not salt), The Nutri-Shake-Shack Plan (using a juicer), The 5-Day Cheetox (yes, a Cheetos detox) and Go V.E.G.A.N. (vodka, eclairs, ganja and Nutella – ‘nuff said). I read the entertaining article in the spirit in which it was written, but it got me thinking about the diet industry and all the guilt associated with starting and stopping various diets.
And the money. Oh, the money! I recently had a patient tell me she had tallied up all the money she had spent on diets over the past few decades, and instead she could have bought a new Camry with money to spare!
My advice is simple: January first is just another day, so treat it as such. If you are working on improving your exercise routine, then continue to do so. If you have been trying to eat more vegetables each day, then go shop for more. If you are trying your best to meditate and de-stress, then I applaud your efforts. If you are trying your best to improve your sleep habits, right on. You don’t need to saddle yourself with a radically different approach just as the clock ticks past midnight.
Just say yes to perseverance, mindfulness, intuitive reflection, support and accountability…and know that those of us at Menu for Change are right there with you for your individual journey.
Happy New Year!