Before you can follow your compass you need to have an idea on where you want to go. If you are not sure how to find your directions for your healthy path - here is a short process to follow:
Pause: Schedule "you" time and sit down in a quiet space and just stop and assess. Where are you now? Are you where you want to be with your health? If not, what changes do you want to make? What do you want to achieve?
Plan: Write down on a notepad or type-up the ideas that come to your mind during the pause step. For each thought, write out different ideas on how to reach that vision or goal. Don't worry about the how yet - keep an open mind.
Prioritize: Order your ideas keeping realistic expectations in mind. What can be achievable in a reasonable amount of time that you will realistically feel/see results?
Pursue: Pick one healthy step you want to take - perhaps your highest priority?! And execute the plan.
After 3-4 weeks of successfully adding in a new healthy habit, consider looking back at your prioritized plans and select the next one!
Here are some of the ideas I found helpful from one of my favorite resources, Blue Zones:
Get Outside Every Day: Make it a point to block even 5 minutes on your Calendar 3 times in your day to go outside and get some air and move around. Step into your backyard, walk around your block. Literally stop and smell the "roses".
Move More: Assess your day and where you sit or stand still the most. Look for opportunities to move. Adjusting your position every 30 minutes is a great rule of thumb. Step side to side. Walk up/down steps. Put on a song and dance. Do some jumping jacks, march in place, whatever works for you!
Eat More Veggies: Adding vegetables to breakfast and lunch is a fantastic way to get in vitamins and nutrients to improve your immune system. Roast some Broccoli and have a few florets in the morning. Add veggies to eggs. Make a veggie smoothie. For lunch choose a salad + protein, a grilled veggie sandwich, add spinach, kale or cucumbers on any type of protein sandwich.
Select a Meal Prep Day: Taking a step back, to flow through your week with healthy meals, is always a great strategy. Pick a day of the week (it can change each week if needed) and plan meals, shopping and take a few hours to prepare some foods to eat through the week.
Invest in Smaller Plates: Plate size can re-adjust your portion size subconsciously. Even consciously, you'll take a smaller portion, and perhaps you'll skip going back for seconds.
Slow Down and Sit when Eating: Mindful eating allows you to taste your foods and feel full faster, which leads to taking in less calories. So stop, sit and slow down - enjoy each meal and snack - and recognize what you are eating. Your digestive system will appreciate your efforts too!
Sleep More: Sleeping heals, grows and re-charges our bodies. Look for opportunities to get to bed a few minutes earlier and use mindfulness techniques to stay asleep through the night. Melatonin can help you fall asleep, but if you have "worry" on your mind, you may not stay asleep - so keep a journal or notepad near your bed and before going to sleep, write down what's on your mind and let it go until the next day. If you wake up in the middle of the night, jot down what came to mind and then let it go - it will be there in the morning.
For more Blue Zone healthy direction details check out this article.