September means a fresh start. After enjoying a slower pace, longer days and warm weather, the cooler mornings and night and return to school mean getting back to routine. This also means there are 4 months left before the new year. For me, September is always like a new year. I associate this with going to school for so long that September is engrained as a new beginning – new schedule, new routine and new motivation to make some positive changes. Here are a few tips to make the most of the September New Year:
When we came into the new year, what were your goals? Have you accomplished them? Have you completely forgotten about them? Take an honest look at where you are compared with the beginning of the year. Sometimes we don’t even realize what positive changes we’ve made until we reflect back. Acknowledge your hard work and recognize where you need to focus.
Based on your evaluation, identify your (new) goals and the “why” – we always have to have a reason. Create a plan of how you’re going to achieve this goal. If it’s exercising more, put it in your schedule and commit to it. If it’s eating healthier, get on a nutrition plan that works for you. Make sure you have a way of knowing when you’ve reached your goal. I like to set a large goal with several smaller goals so I have some achievements along the way!
Similarly to creating a plan, it’s important to plan ahead. Make a list of what you need to do – it’s much easier to focus on getting things done when they can be crossed off a list. A little trick is to do the hardest or most annoying things first to get them out of the way.
If eating healthy is part of your fall plan, make sure you plan you meals and snacks ahead of time. If there’s nothing healthy accessible, we’ll automatically turn to something unhealthy. This does take more time, so make it fun. Put some music or a podcast on, try a new recipe. Something I find helpful is to cook extra – I’d rather eat the same thing for a few days than make a whole new meal three times a day.
If a tree fall in the middle of the forest with no witnesses to hear it, does it really make a sound? The same goes for our goals. If we don’t tell anyone about them, it’s much easier to drop off as no one will know if we don’t reach them. It’s human nature to work with others and when we have an accountability partner we have to report to, we are much more likely to stick to our goals and do what we said we would do. Find someone who trust and someone who is going to keep you accountable to your goals.
Fall is also a great time to get back on track with our health, the perfect time to finally get to those little things we’ve let slide. A diet clean-up, adrenal fatigue and immune system boosting and complete health reset are especially on our minds this time of the year. Now’s the time to get a head start and finish the year feeling amazing!
Dr Renée Purdy is a naturopathic doctor in Moncton, New Brunswick. In her practice, she values making health achievable and long lasting. She likes to explore the mind, body, spirit connection in health, and her approach includes using food as medicine, herbal medicine, acupuncture and lifestyle counselling. Her focus is on digestive health, hormone balance, thyroid health and adrenal fatigue.