5 health hacks that don't include a detox | The Daily Glow

5 Health Hacks – that don’t include a detox

Okay so I don’t know about you, but New Year’s day being on a Monday means none of the “January health buzz” starts until the following Monday…which is followed by “Blue Monday”, officially the worst Monday of the year…none of which make for the best start to the year.  Congratulations, you have made it out the other side (Mondays can only get better now!), and hopefully you still have some of your initial enthusiasm (too strong a word?  Resignation might be more accurate perhaps) for starting 2018 on a healthy note intact.  After the first few weeks however, I have found the combination of meal-prepping, going back to work and sweating it out in an over crowded gym (where do they come from?)  robbed some of the aforementioned enthusiasm (resignation, yes it’s resignation).  Below are a few ways I’ve found to propel me forward, no matter how low my motivational level has dropped.

 

  1. Listen to something to wake you up

I’ve recently started listening to podcasts instead of music in the gym and on the way to work – and some really help me find motivation and focus when I’m struggling.  My current favourite first thing on a Monday morning is Gary Vee, as he is one of the most energetic and inspiring people on the planet, but I also add in some Bulletproof Radio and Tony Robbins to balance it out a bit (Gary’s energy is infectious – but even on a good day I can’t keep it up all day long!).  If you line up the podcasts you want to listen to for the week on a Sunday evening, it makes it much easier to just press play while you’re half asleep – and once again, the bluetooth headphones I found in Penneys make it easy to go about your normal morning routine.

5 health hacks that don't include a detox | The Daily Glow

 

2. Put the kettle on

Any morning that I find myself struggling from the moment my alarm goes off, I have found that if I can just get out of bed, the rest of it is much more manageable.  So instead of scrolling endlessly through social media, or hitting the snooze button, I have started to pretend that I can go back to bed with a cup of coffee – I just have to go downstairs and put the kettle on.  Now, in theory this should be far too simple a trick to play on myself – but somehow, it works!  By the time the kettle is boiled, I am awake enough to keep going and get myself to the gym etc – I think it’s the physical getting out of bed that does the trick here, so hopefully I can keep falling for it.

5 health hacks that don't include a detox | The Daily Glow

 

3. Wash your face

Similar to the step above, this wakes you up enough to remember why you set your alarm for silly o’clock in the first place – and makes it harder to go back to sleep.  It also can help prevent wrinkles around your eyes, as washing your face is a far less damaging to the delicate skin in this area than rubbing them vigorously to remove any traces of sleep.

 

4. Detox your social media

This one is quite topical after the media storm surrounding some well-know Irish “influencers” this month, but if reaching for your phone and scrolling is how you start your day, it can have a massive impact on your mood and mindset for the whole day.  Not only is watching the world’s highlight reel first thing presenting you with a distorted perspective as you wake up, it’s also way too easy for minutes (and hours) to disappear without you even realising – and being late is certainly not going to help anyone feel better in January.  I tried a digital detox before, and couldn’t believe how often my hand automatically reached for my phone when it wasn’t there, and was shocked at how much extra time I had due to the lack of social media meandering.  Although I probably won’t go quite so hard core again for a while, unfollowing accounts that don’t bring me any net benefit has positively changed the time I do spend scrolling – so it turns out you can even Marie Kondo your instagram feed.

 

5.  Reward yourself

A common enough instruction in diet advice articles, this one can be very effective.  There are many different ways of implementing it – so whether saving money, losing weight or performing better at work are part of your goals, there’s always an appropriate carrot to be found.  At the base of a motivational slump is exactly when I find scheduling or organising something to treat myself works best – ordering a new pair of runners or signing up for a run (not everyone’s idea of fun, I’ll grant you) or planning a couple of hours off to use a shopping voucher I got for Christmas or meet friends for coffee are usually my go-tos.  Baking or exercising will also turn my mood around instantly  if I’m in a totally useless mood.

5 health hacks that don't include a detox | The Daily Glow

January 17th is apparently when most of us break our New Years resolutions, so if you fell off the the straight and narrow last Wednesday you were in good company – and you fell with me and my glass of wine.  But as the saying goes, it’s not falling down that matters, it’s the getting back up.  So whether it’s a healthy eating or exercise regime you committed to, decluttering your house (or your life), reaching for a goal that ignites your inner passion, or even just taking 5 minutes for yourself at the end of every day, know that you’re not the only one wavering and give yourself a break…just get back up after!

5 health hacks that don't include a detox | The Daily Glow

New Year...same old me | The Daily Glow

New year…same old me

I must admit, the whole “New Year, new me” thing really irritates me.  Just like when you reach a milestone birthday…you’re not really a whole lot different once the clock strikes midnight – but people tend to make a deal of it.  And yet, I do find those few days between Christmas and NYE (when nobody knows what day it is, what time it is, or if they’ve actually reached a lethal limit in food  intake yet) to naturally encourage me to reflect on the past year – please note that usually I would put this down to an extreme and intense case of the fear (induced by alcohol, lack of exercise and overconsumption of sugar), but this Christmas has been a bit different, and I’m still spending an unwarranted amount of time navel gazing.

New Year...same old me | The Daily Glow

This year I am spending Christmas and NYE in one of my favourite places in the whole world, in  south Thailand – the best thing you can do with yourself, if you are in any way curious, and just so you know, wearing a bikini for the best part of Christmas day, does tend to curb the over eating (somewhat).  So I have escaped the usual ten nights out in a row and most of the eating and drinking to excess, and spent some time with family and close friends…and yet I am still almost looking forward to a fresh start in January – new journal ordered (I’m a stationery freak, among my other attractive qualities), business plan for 2018 in the pipeline and already booking flights as my calendar is filling up.

New Year...same old me | The Daily Glow

My 2016 was about as great as the endless memes that likened it to the end of the world, so 2017 was better by a mile (it wasn’t hard!) – it really has been a great year, although primarily focused on work and study, my social life has been left to slide somewhat.  I read once that balance is possible – be that work/life balance, being health conscious, spending enough time with family etc – but just maybe not all at once.  There will be years where study or work are at the forefront, as you build your career, other stages where sleep is lacking and family takes precedent and so on.  Have you found the balance of your life slip predominantly in one direction over the last few years?  Whatever stage of life you’re in, it’s pretty likely that something has taken over, to the detriment of either your health, family or friends.  Have you reached the end of one stage, with the next on the horizon?  This year I will be doing my best to make up the balance of fun that may have been over looked over the past two years…so 2018, please hurry up!

New Year...same old me | The Daily Glow

SaveSaveSaveSave

the daily glow

Inspire yourself – even if it’s still January

January is nearly over, and 2017 is well and truly underway.  Despite my love of the fresh start that January brings (and I think that is the only thing I love about January), around now I usually find myself hitting a motivational slump, and all my goals for the year ahead seem far too ambitious, despite having another 11 months to go before the next round begins(the crying and wailing emojis would be appropriate here) .

There are a variety of ways to boost motivation, such as inspirational quotes, visualisation and repeating positive affirmations to yourself.  Now these may all work very well for some people, and certainly when things are going well, an inspirational quote can push me along very nicely indeed.  However, when I’m exhausted, frustrated and finding it impossible to figure out where to go next (be it school, college, work, relationships, or life in general), I find the best ways to pull myself out of the motivational abyss is to either look to other people for inspiration, or get out of my head completely for a while (sometimes a combination of both) – invariably, the fresh perspective I gain on my return makes everything easier to navigate.

dreams - inspire yourself

Read a book

  • The Success Principles by Jack Canfield may sound overly simplistic or even vaguely patronising, but I really enjoyed it.  Canfield’s logical and no-nonsense tone is easy to read, and I’ve forgotten how many times I’ve picked this one up.  It’s broken down into chapters related to each (yes you’ve guessed it) “success principle”, which makes it very easy to pick and choose what’s pertinent to you when you need a refresher (hence the repetitive reading).
  • Jack Black (once again, not the comedian/actor, the dude from Glasgow) and his Mindstore Book are always up near the top.  His goal-setting workshop helped me start my year on the right foot, and if you sign up to his online Mindstore library, you are rewarded with a couple of free modules to listen to. This podcast is a short introduction and one I tend to listen to when I’m having trouble nodding off (so convenient how insomnia tends to accompany inspirational slumps).

 

Listen to a youtube video or podcast
As with the above for Jack Black, podcasts or youtube videos are easy to fit into your day, no matter how busy you are – you can listen on the way to work, while in the gym or before bed.

  • Ted talks are great for this, although there is the danger of wandering off along a random trail and ending up binging netflix style (or is it really only me?).  This one by Brené Brown is one of my favourites.
  • Almost anything from Dr Wayne Dyer – although Dyer passed away in 2015 his voice seems to speak so directly to you, it’s hard to believe it. He wrote extensively over his lifetime, with Your Erroneous Zones spending over a year on the New York Times bestseller list – and eventually going on to become one of the top-selling books of all time.

Inspire yourself - The Daily Glow

Get out of the house (and your head)
Running (and now yoga) is a form of therapy for me, however I do realise it’s not for everyone.  Exercise of any type will usually help, but even if that’s really not your thing (and let’s face it, on a dark January evening it’s not really mine either), there are other ways of resetting your mind.  Going for a walk or a coffee without your phone can clear your head – especially if you bring a book to read or journal to write.  Even just writing down whatever’s in your head with the intention of throwing the pages away immediately after can change the direction of your thoughts.  Generally, disconnecting from technology for a couple of hours at the weekend (and being mildly disturbed at how often your hand reaches for your phone) can really create some breathing space.

Inspire yourself - The Daily Glow

So that’s my emergency quarter-life crisis strategy – which may be more necessary than I’d like, as Millennials are officially the most stressed out generation, according  to a survey from the American Psychological Association. We are also the generation least able to handle it, apparently(great), but at least that means you’re definitely not alone.  Another study included the 9 hours a day students spend on their phone as part of the problem – I think the less time we can all spend with our phones the better (and I’m up there with the best addicts).  Airplane mode at night time  is a start, but I’ve been curious about a 24 hour digital detox for a while…I’ll let you know if it ever happens!