How Do You Prepare For 2017?
I woke up from an afternoon nap and strolled to the kitchen to grab a soda. It’s a daily ritual I have, to kick-off the second half of my day. My body craves the caffeine infused carbonated drink to get me going so I may have the energy and focus to accomplish a full load of tasks and work waiting for me down in my office. I open the refrigerator and stare at the bright can of soda waiting for me to consume it. I sense the saliva forming in my mouth in anticipation of the sugary liquid hitting my taste buds. I feel a headache brewing within my skull, demanding that I satisfy it with a jolt of caffeine. It’s in this moment that I realize it’s time to give up soda.
We get caught up in acquiring things. We collect pictures, artifacts, friends, but mostly we collect habits. We fill our lives with them. We numb our brains with entertainment “shows” that we must consume, so we stream them over our favorite mobile device and sacrifice time better spent elsewhere. We hang on to bad relationships and form horrible eating habits. Our lives become overflowing with garbage that we allow to penetrate our souls.
I’m no different. I just finished a two-month binge watch of the entire six seasons of Game of Thrones. I drink coffee in the morning and a soda in the afternoon. I enjoy eating at Wendy’s and love my pizza. I make unhealthy choices and allow them to creep into my daily routine, but it’s moments like I had a few weeks ago that I recognize it and become faced with a decision. What’s more important to me? Comfort or long term health.
We take our health for granted, but it eventually catches up to us and always wins, when we continue to make poor choices. If not managed, our health will decline. When asked, most folks list health as one of their top three priorities in life, yet we continue to make unhealthy decisions.
I’ve learned that it’s unhealthy to fill our lives with junk, whether it’s too much TV, social media browsing, or poor eating habits. The answer is clear, eliminate. A healthy life is a simple life, and a simple life starts with eliminating the excess junk we’ve allowed to collect in our lives. I’m not suggesting a purge, but start somewhere small, like eliminating soda from your diet. Why is this important? I eliminated soda, because I felt like I “had” to consume it. My body needed it to function properly. I became dependent on it, which was a red flag and an indicator that I needed to get rid of it.
As you begin to think about 2017 and how to get started, why not begin with your health? If you got everything you wanted this year, but declined in health at the end of it, would you be satisfied? Who cares if you’re doing well at work, but have high blood pressure, are stressed out, and generally unhappy with your life. Identify something that’s become a habit for you and ask yourself a fundamental question, “Is this good or bad for my health?” or “How does this help me?” and if you cannot find a good answer, then maybe it’s time to eliminate it.
Just start with one thing for now and stick with it, no matter what! Eliminate that one thing that is holding you back to better health and you will find that it will strengthen your resolve and will lead to stronger discipline that will allow you to tackle bigger issues down the road.
Eliminating soda was just a small part of my life, but a big decision that’s empowered me. It’s given me hope that I can tackle bigger things that will strengthen my body, sharpen my mind, and protect my soul. Soda has not touched my lips in over three weeks and I feel fantastic! How about you? What’s the one thing that you could eliminate going into 2017? I’m excited for your future, now go eliminate something!