“Greetings, gifts, and gluttony—tis the season…” my son quipped because of all the tempting food laying around. The Wilsons aren’t the only ones that enjoy holiday foods. Larry asked our small group what they liked about this time of the year. Here are some responses.
“Being with friends and family.”
With each nibble we promise ourselves that come January 2nd we’ll do better.
New Years are a great time to start fresh. But without reflection and an aim we repeat old patterns and wonder why we don’t change. Someone said stupidity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Have you taken time to consider where you’re headed this year?
Consider the areas of your life that matter most to you. For example: faith, family, finances, career, health, personal development, and special projects. Identify an aim for each area or one overarching aim. Last year I wanted to learn more about what it meant to trust God. That aim affected what I noticed when I read my Bible and how I responded to life. This year I want to learn more about what it means to enjoy God (Ps. 37:4).
If you need help identifying and setting goals click here for free resources. Pray for guidance. It’s important to turn your goals into reasonable steps. Those who don’t allow breathing room in budgets, schedules, or diets are doomed to fail. Create steps you can willingly sustain for the long run.
For health you might begin with something like this:
- Eat a meatless meal twice a week.
- Find healthy substitutes for unhealthy foods. Through the year I’ll share some easy ones I’ve discovered. For example:
- Eat tortilla chips with salsa or guacamole instead of artery clogging cheese spreads.
- Replace that processed or unhealthy snack with a piece of fresh fruit or a handful of fresh almonds or cashews.
- When you crave a soda, try sparkling water with pineapple juice and a twist of lime.
- Walk or cycle for 30 minutes five days a week.
Our taste buds adjust to our choices and begin to prefer healthier foods. If you’re already doing that, take it up a notch.Small consistent changes add up to make a big difference. Click To Tweet
These changes won’t tax your budget or time. But the cumulative effect will benefit your overall life. Our health in one area affects the vitality of another. How much do you enjoy your friends, faith, or your work when you’re tired and run down? Or how well do you connect with your spouse when you are stressed out? That is why we must develop our whole selves—body, soul, and spirit.
Start where you are and build success in the various areas of your life. Make your steps doable and then do them.
Here is a recipe to kick off a healthy New Year.
Black-eyed Peas and Kale
1 Tbsp. peanut oil
3 large sweet onions, sliced
½ tsp. salt (Celtic Sea Salt, Himalayan Pink Salt, or Sea Salt)
3 cans of black-eyed peas, drained or 4 cups cooked drained.
2 bay leaves
2 C vegetable broth (I use organic vegetable bouillon)
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp. raw agave
6 cups chopped clean kale
Pepper to taste
Over medium heat stir onions into warmed oil. Cover and cook until soft, about 5 min. Uncover, add salt, and sauté until onions are golden brown, approximately 20 minutes.
Set aside half of the onions for garnish. To the remaining onions add everything except the kale. Bring to a simmer. Reduce to low and stir frequently until the liquid has reduced, about 15 minutes. Stir in chopped kale, cover and cook 5 minutes. Add pepper. Serve over brown rice or with whole grain bread. Garnish with reserved onions.
Here’s to a better life in 2014. Please pass on your successes, tips, and recipes.
Question: What’s one thing you plan to change this year? Click here to comment.
Happy New Year,
Deborah W. Wilson
Linking with: #LivefreeThursday,
Photo by: bayasaa