5 Ways to Stay Balanced in the New Year

Starting a new year can be stressful, intimidating, and nerve-racking. On the other hand, it can also be invigorating, exciting, and beautiful. It all depends on the mindset you want to approach it in! With 2016 behind us all, we can enter 2017 with a glass half empty mentality or a glass half full one. I also like to go with the latter one. The start of a new year is always a chance to get it right. It's a chance to do better, be better, and invoke a fire inside ourselves that is ready to shine.  Maintaining balance can be the key to creating a year that you enjoy and can be proud of.  I've got some really easy ways to stay more balanced in your body, mind and spirit. Sound like something you might be interested in? I thought so. Here are five super simple ways to stay balanced in the new year:

1.) Crowd out the non-foods with more real foods- My rule of thumb is to always eat way more real food than processed, packaged junk. If I put it in my mind to always choose the whole food, whether it's fruit, vegetables, grains, or proteins, over the processed and packaged stuff then I know my body will recognize it, digest it, and enjoy it more. Now this doesn't mean I think you shouldn't indulge. Indulge! Enjoy life! Eat treats! But when you load up on the healthy stuff, you have less room for the junky stuff and then it becomes what it should have always been, an occasional indulgent treat.

2.) Find something to be grateful for every day- You can wake up and just envision it in your mind, say it out loud, or better yet, write it down! When you wake up with a grateful spirit, your day is much more likely to go smoother because you will be in an open, thankful, and joyful state. Gratitude can truly change the outlook of the day. Just give it a try for a week and notice the bliss that comes your

3.) Meditate in the Morning- Starting this practice literally changed my life. By devoting just 10 minutes to meditation in the morning, you can change your nervous system! Meditation is such a gift for your body, mind & spirit. There are tons of Apps out there that can help ease you into meditation. My favorite is Calm. Try meditation in the morning for 10 minutes a day and notice the shift within.

4.) Move Your Body Every Day- All it takes is at least 21 minutes of movement to really feel and see the benefits of exercise in day to day life. It can be a beautiful nature walk (or walk around your office), 20-30 minutes of yoga in the morning, a short Pilates class at your favorite wellness center, or whatever kind of movement, well, moves YOU! We were made to move, not to be too sedentary. Remember that any kind of movement it good as long as it's something you enjoy doing. If it feels like a chore, you will be less likely to stay with it.

5.) Stay Present- Ground yourself in the moment you are in right now! That's truly all that exists. When we keep replaying the past or worry about the future, we rob ourselves of the beauty and lessons of the present. There are many mindfulness techniques you can practice that will keep you in the moment and also grounded enough to enjoy what is happening right in front of you. Here are some really easy ways to stay mindful during your work day.