By Connie Masak, APNP

The new year brings with it another opportunity to make resolutions that last for a few weeks, or a few months but rarely resolutions that stand the test of time. Let’s make this easy; resolve to love yourself, take care of yourself, and focus on yourself as a person. It may seem contradictory, but the better you care for yourself, the more you have to give to others – your children, your spouse, your aging parents, and your co-workers.

New Year's ResolutionHere are our recommendations for a healthy and happy new year:

  1. Mammogram: If you are 40 years old or older, we recommend a mammogram yearly.
  2. Colonoscopy: If you are 50 years old or older, we recommend a colonoscopy screening or at the very least, discuss ColoGuard or FIT testing with your primary care provider.
  3. Diet and Exercise: I know, I know we beat ourselves up every year, Keto, Atkins, Mediterranean, DASH, Weight Watchers, there are a ton of diets out there, but we all KNOW what we should eat and what we shouldn’t. Weight Watchers is a great program that helps track your food and exercise. My Fitness Pal is also a great App to keep you on track. We think the key is to find something that works for you, allow yourself some “off” days, and if you fall off the wagon IT’S OKAY, jump back on! Every woman can do things for herself to be healthier. Exercise to a goal of 150 minutes per week, rest, watch your sugar and fat intake and take a calcium supplement with a daily multivitamin.  
  4. Relax: I KNOW! We tend not to take time for ourselves. We are always there for our kids, our spouses, our parents, and our friends, but what about being there for ourselves? It’s important! Even five minutes of quiet reflection every day can change your mood and help you deal with your daily stressors. Take a lunch break, meditate or do yoga first thing in the morning, and after the kids are tucked in …. take five!
  5. Money: The holidays are over but the bills are starting to trickle in. To better plan for 2020’s holiday season, consider downloading a budgeting app, taking your credit cards out of your wallet, and using your debit card. Think about putting away “x” amount of dollars from every paycheck into a Christmas account. As little as $5 can make a huge difference in the long run.

The most important thing to remember in this coming year is to love and respect yourself and the choices you make. You matter to more people than you think.