Have a Healthy December

by Debra Rose

Here’s a bit of exciting and frightening news; on average, September is the month in which you are the most fit all year. The exciting part? All of those beach days in the water and outdoor activities make a difference. The scary part? We tend to sabotage that progress in the weeks between Halloween and New Years Day. Maybe it’s time to have a healthy December instead.

In addition to making New Year resolutions, we try to implement financial adjustments, changes in eating habits, and maybe a “sober January” starting after New Years Day. Likely this is due to all the partying and socializing that takes place for a few months leading up to the end of the calendar year. The damage caused in such little time takes months to undo, so why not be cognizant of our choices now instead of waiting?

Let’s not underestimate stress, which is inevitable during the holiday season. There are parties and dinners to host and attend, shopping to do, family to see (or avoid), and end-of-year financial and work pressure. All of it conveniently happens in December as soon as the Turkey is put away.

Remember hearing about the cruise ship mentality? Dieting just before since the weight gain is part of the vacation? Many approach this season as a chance to indulge and deal later. That can mean indulging on every level; with the credit card, fork, bottle, spike in stress and deprivation of sleep. Our energy, mind, body, wallet and sanity will pay the price.

So the cycle continues, and the indulging that feels so rare and special around the holidays is actually an annual ritual we put ourselves through. A detrimental one.

As an experiment this December, why not embrace the gift of moderation, taking care of yourself and others while trying to keep an eye on what those resolutions will be now, not later. Maybe start putting them into practice.

When you make your list in the beginning of the year, do you include a foot note that says, only for part of 2019, not for all of it? And certainly not for good? It will feel a lot better to start small with changes you intend to make, and get the momentum going now. Then you can make different predictions about how the start of your year will be.

Happy Holidays!