As we look back on another year and look forward with anticipation, this is a great time to think about what we want to achieve in the New Year—and set some reachable goals to get there. Many of us tend to set the same goals over and over again, and that’s ok! Health and wellness is a daily, repeatable goal, so don’t feel bad about continuing a similar goal as last year. Here are some tips to make progress this year:
- Rearrange your kitchen. Take a good look at your pantry, freezer, and fridge and ask yourself if your system is working for you. If not, pull everything out, give your storage a good cleaning, and then put things back in a way that might be easier at meal and snack time. For example, arrange foods by food group or by favorite recipe. Make sure fresh items are easily seen so they can be used up, and keep recipes for favorites easily accessible. Take the time to relocate any daily use items to make it easier, too, like putting plates and silverware where the kids can reach to help set the table. If smoothies are your thing, keep the blender in a place that’s easy to get to.
- Rearrange your routine. If time doesn’t always seem to be on your side, try something new. Prepare lunches and breakfasts the night before if mornings are too busy. Cook ahead on days off and make it fun. Buy food that makes balanced meals instead of just ingredients. For example, don’t buy something you don’t have a plan for.
- Stick to what works. If you have an exercise routine that you love, keep doing it. If you have favorite foods to eat, find some recipes that incorporate new items to go with the ones you already love.
- Form new habits. Maybe you want to start packing your own meals to take with you to work or school. Do you have the right equipment to make that easy? Get a thermal lunch bag, ice pack and snap tight lid containers that go from freezer to microwave.
Making it easier to make better choices is a great way to set yourself up for success this year!
Kim Kirchherr, MS, RD, LDN, CDE, FAND