4 January 2021 · MGM News

Hello Happier Healthier 2021

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Your plans for New Year's 2021 were probably to be a lot different than what they used to be, you may have even traded in a New Year's Eve party for more time on the couch in front of movie — and your resolutions may look different, too.

However you welcomed in this year, a renewed focus on your health may be top of mind. Or, you may be tired just thinking about meal prep or your waistline, in which case you'll turn your sights on your mental and physical health, or your sleep routine, or the mess in your living room — or the mess of your closet!

This year, fill your resolution list with easy, good-for-you goals. Try one of these simple lifestyle tweaks each day, and you'll not only jumpstart a healthier body and mind — you'll feel fantastic and so psyched to make 2021 a much better year than ever before.

There are tips here that will calm you down and ease your stress, help your skin glow, and organise the crazy in your life — maybe you'll even pick up a cute new daily planner to stay on track! You'll find easy ways to squeeze a little more fitness into your busy days and sane strategies for decluttering. And if you are looking for ways to lose weight, we've got some surprising, fresh ideas that will help you get there.

This year, it's time to put YOU first.

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BUILD A BETTER BUDGET

If there's one New Year's resolution that will help you the most in the long run, it's making a vow to save more money. Before you head back to the office, outline a budget that works for you — and make a plan for how you'll stick to it. 

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COOK ONE NEW THING EACH WEEK

Everyone wants to eat healthier in the new year, but you should also try to eat more diverse foods. After all, variety is the spice of life. This year, choose an easy dinner recipe you've never tried before at least once a week

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READ MORE BOOKS

January is the perfect time of year to snuggle up with a new book. Keep yourself accountable to this New Year's resolution by opening a Goodreads account and reviewing each book you read. By next year, you'll have a clear snapshot of how well you accomplished this goal.

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JOIN A CLUB

Starting a new hobby is one thing, but joining a club will help you meet new people in the process. Sites like Meetup can help you find a group of people with similar interests, and you can work on creating digital meetups with new friends in the process.

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CREATE A CLEANING SCHEDULE YOU'LL STICK TO

Keeping your home tidy without doing what feels like a deep clean every week can feel like a big ask. It's true that you may be under cleaning some tricky spots, but it's also true that you may be overdoing it elsewhere. Carolyn Forté, the director of the Good Housekeeping Institute's Home Appliances & Cleaning Products Lab, created a printable checklist to make sure keeping the house neat doesn't suck up endless hours of time on weekends anymore.

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DRINK LESS ALCOHOL

You already know you don't need to drink to have fun — and so why not make this year the one you cut back and join the sober curious movement? Doing so could improve your mood, sleep, skin, and immune system. Plus, it'll also help you save money.

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QUIT SMOKING

Cigarettes are extremely harmful for your health, particularly your lungs — but tobacco products in general (including vapes) pose a serious threat. There are so many resources to help you get a jumpstart on ditching tobacco, including Queensland Health

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BOOK ALL YOUR MEDICAL VISITS FOR THE YEAR

Open your calendar app (or planner) and make your appointments for the year in one sitting — not only will you get the anxiety-inducing nuisance over with, but exams will be less likely to get squeezed out as life gets bonkers. Start with your primary care provider, and ask which screenings (e.g. mammogram, colonoscopy) you're due for. Slot those in, then move on to the dentist's, skin checks, optometrist etc.

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TAKE THE STAIRS

Take 10 minutes to run up the stairs in your office or home. A published study in the journal Physiology & Behavior found that tired women who climbed stairs for 10 minutes got a bigger energy boost than those who had the caffeine equivalent of a can of soda or half a cup of coffee (and burned calories too).

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BECOME A PLANT OWNER

Swing by the garden center after brunch this weekend. Just the presence of indoor plants can lower human stress levels, research shows, and one study found that actively caring for plants calmed the autonomic nervous system and lowered blood pressure. And when people work near plants, they report greater concentration, satisfaction, and perceived air quality.

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PLAN A VACATION...

... when it feels safe to do so. People who vacation at least twice a year have a lower heart attack risk than those do so rarely. And researchers have found that even thinking about an upcoming trip can boost happiness for weeks.

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DRINK UP.

You know you need to hydrate — but it's especially important when you get only six hours of sleep (or less!). You’re more likely to be dehydrated the day after a short night of zzz's, because a hormone that regulates your body’s water conservation is released in later stages of sleep. So down some extra water on those days.

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VOLUNTEER

Research shows that pitching in regularly can lead to less stress and lower blood pressure. So use this day to jumpstart a longer-term personal commitment.

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LIFT WEIGHTS

If you've already nailed your cardio workouts in the past few years, why not try incorporating a new routine? A quality set of dumbbells can help elevate your workout, improve your stamina, and build muscle. Plus, they work well with many of the other gadgets in your home gym to reinvigorate your workout.

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GIVE YOURSELF A NEW LOOK

Working on your look is just as refreshing as turning over a new leaf internally. Taking off a few inches can make you feel (literally and figuratively) so much lighter in the new year. Even a simple new style or hair color could brighten your days and put pep back into your step in 2021.

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PLAY UPBEAT MUSIC

Blasting any happy-making tune can work multiple mind-body wonders including reducing pain during exercise, elevating mood, and lowering stress, research shows. So make a playlist — any songs that oat your spirit will do the job.