It’s another New Year, and many of us will be scratching our heads trying to think of New Year’s Resolutions that we can keep. This year don’t pick a big resolution, instead make small lifestyle changes that make you feel happier, healthier and have more money!
Here are our ways to help improve your mental, physical and financial wellbeing in the New Year:
Healthy food for a healthy mind
Eating healthier food, especially after indulging over the festive season, will have a great impact on your mental and physical wellbeing. Eating meals full of vitamins and nutrients is a natural way to improve your health without having to make a big lifestyle change. If you want a challenge, try taking part in Veganuary and cut out meat to try a healthier alternative. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive, bulk out meals with vegetables instead of meat and shop for ‘wonky veg’ to reduce costs.
Exercise to improve your mental health
When you exercise, your body releases endorphins which are happy hormones that make you feel an instant positive boost. Little changes like getting off the bus one stop before your normal stop, parking a little further away to get more steps in or taking the stairs instead of the lift can all help you to feel better and exercise more. Don’t get drawn into reduced gym membership offers that tie you into a contract – especially if you’re not going to go, it can be really expensive and there are plenty of free alternatives you can do at home or locally.
Drink less alcohol
After the festive season, it’s a great time to detox for a healthier mind and body. Whether you choose to just cut down on your alcohol consumption or to cut out alcohol completely by taking part in Dry January, you’ll benefit from hangover-free weekends – and not drinking will give you a more positive mindset too. Reducing alcohol intake will naturally also save you money.
Drink more fluids
We should be drinking six to eight cups of fluid a day and it’s easier to achieve than you think. As well as water, you can stay hydrated with low fat milk, sugar-free drinks or even tea and coffee. By being hydrated you’ll have more energy, and your brain will function better too! Investing in a reusable bottle will help you save money and waste whilst staying hydrated.
Get a good night’s sleep
Make sure you have a good night’s sleep to regulate hormones, boost concentration, reduce the risk of health problems and help your body maintain a healthy immune system. Some simple tips to improve sleep are to exercise regularly, try to get up at the same time each day, and reduce alcohol, caffeine, or nicotine in the evening. Other sleep tips are to turn off electronics and get into a bedtime routine so you train your brain when it’s time to rest.
Check your benefits
Take a look on our benefit calculator to make sure you’re getting the benefits you’re entitled to. If you’re getting everything that you’re entitled to, complete a budget to see if you’re able to reduce your spending or to see if you need to reach out for more support with your finances.
Make sure you’re on the best tariff
Take a look through your bills and check comparison sites to make sure that what you’re paying is the best tariff for your utilities. Make sure you aren’t overpaying and set up a monthly direct debit instead of paying quarterly or annually to stay on top.
Set a little aside each month to help you maintain financial stability. You can use it towards anything unexpected or to treat yourself once you’ve saved enough for what you want, which will help you to not use credit in future. Figure out what you’ve got coming in and going out and see what you can realistically afford to put into savings.
Look after yourself and set time aside to relax or do something that you enjoy doing, as often as possible. Write down any worries and concerns that you have and make a plan, so you know how you’re going to tackle them.
Be your own biggest fan
It’s easy to criticise ourselves, and to not give yourself a break. This year make the change to support yourself and applaud yourself for little achievements and don’t beat yourself up when things don’t go right. Think about what you’d say to a friend if it was them – a bit of positivity goes a long way!
Whether it’s financial worries, fitness, or mental wellbeing – talking things through is going to help. You aren’t alone and opening up can help you to get the support you need so that you can tackle the situation.
Get help if you’re struggling
Whether you’re finding it difficult at the moment with your mental health, or if other aspects of life are having an impact on your mental wellbeing – reach out for the help and support that you need.