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How to End This Year on a High!

How to End This Year on a High!

    Are you looking forward to the New Year or are you bogged down with unfinished tasks from this year?  No matter what sort of year you have had, you still have the opportunity to end this year on a high, and start the New Year on a positive note.

    You will have had a number of successes in the last twelve months and it is important to acknowledge them. At the same time, you can learn from those things that did not quite go the way you had hoped.

    Here are some simple ways of ending this year powerfully.

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    1. Review the year that is about to end. Write down some of the highlights of all the good things that happened to you. You will be surprised just how much goodness and happiness you have actually had this year. Write down all your achievements such as “I did more exercise”,   “I gave up junk food” or “I wrote a book”.

    2. Share and celebrate your successes this year with your family and friends.  This self acknowledgement and appreciation will be a great platform for the New Year. You deserve it. As usual, being grateful for the goodness already in your life makes it possible for you to receive even more. Celebrating your successes is also a key step in having the confidence to take on new challenges in the New Year.

    3. Send greetings of appreciation and thanks to those people who have helped make this year special for you. Use the normal Xmas paper cards, or better still, be economical and environmentally friendly and use email or internet ecards.  Express gratitude for your past alliances and at the same time, forge stronger friendships for the future.

    4. Review your current to do list for work. Be ruthless and eliminate as many tasks as you can, without doing them. Then choose just one task and get it done before the end of the year. Finally, throw away your unfinished to do list and do not write another one till next year. You will be surprised how great it will feel not having a list of things to do.

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    5. Finish off any unresolved matters. Look at completing any small unfinished and niggling tasks around the house, such as oiling any squeaky door hinges, and make sure that these things do not play on your mind early in the New Year

    6. Clear up some clutter. Go around the house room by room, collect those things you no longer want and either dump or give to a charity shop. Have a clear space so that the New Year can begin to bring you greater prosperity. Be ruthless and do not wait till spring time to clear your unwanted stuff.

    7. Go through your important paperwork and bring up to date as much as possible. You do not want to start the New Year worrying about mundane administration tasks. If you use a computer, then delete any old and unnecessary files and emails.

    8. Review how you have spent your time this year, and identify those things that have been draining your energy. Make a plan to eliminate those relationships that no longer work for you. Look at smarter ways of spending your time.

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    Begin to say NO this year to things that you don’t really want to do. Unsubscribe from newsletters, magazine, email groups so that your time is not cluttered up in the New Year.

    9. Be different and do something new. Before the end of the year, do something that you have never done before. For example, go and see a children’s pantomime on your own, take a city tour guide or dine in a restaurant you would have never thought of trying.  End the year on a new voyage of discovery and child like curiosity.

    10. Start walking every day for at least 20 minutes until the New Year begins. Not only will you feel great but you will be avoiding the weight gain problems so common during the holiday season. Also, you might just enjoy the walking so much that it could become a great new habit for the New Year.

    11. Rest and relax. Though you will get busy with some of the above suggestions, it is also important to take it easy now for a day or two and do nothing. Sleep in all day, or just laze about in front of the TV.

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    Recharge yourself before the New Year kicks in.

    No matter how the year ends for you, just remember that it has been a great year. And next year you can make it even better.

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    Last Updated on May 22, 2019

    10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

    10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

    There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

    One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

    In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

    Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

    1. Cat Camel Stretch

    Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

    Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

    Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

    Here’s a video to guide you through:

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    2. Go for a Walk or a Run

    This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

    Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

    The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

    Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

    Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

    3. Jumping Jacks

    Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

    Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

    4. Abductor Side Lifts

    Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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    Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

    5. Balancing Table Pose

    This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

    Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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      6. Leg Squats

      Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

      Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

      The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

      7. Push Ups

      You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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      An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

      Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

      This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

      8. Bicycle Crunches

      There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

      Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

      9. Lunges

      Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

      Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

      This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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      10. Bicep Curls

      You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

      Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

      Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

      Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

      Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

      These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

      You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

      Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

      More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

      Reference

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