As I look back on my resolutions for this past year, I have to laugh. I was going to be younger! I was going to say nice things to strangers! Really go after those four pillars of healthy longevity (physical activity, social interconnectedness, an inner sense of purpose and joy, a whole food plant-based diet)! This was going to be my year!
And then a global pandemic happened.
I don’t know about you, but this past year has been a struggle. Less healthy eating and more comfort foods. No hugs or handshakes or exchanging pleasantries with strangers. Physical isolation from school, work and extended family. Gyms closed, team sports sidelined. Gathering for weddings and funerals banned. Holiday traditions upended. I could go on and on...
The fact that we even made it through all that this past year is truly a testament of our collective resilience.
So what am I looking forward to in 2021?
To getting back to normal. And back to those pillars. Because if we’ve learned nothing else in 2020 it’s that health is the most valuable possession we can have. Not just because we can flash around nice cholesterol numbers or receive compliments about our weight, but because we are so much better protected against developing any disease or suffering its complications.
I managed to keep up with exercise through it all so that takes care of pillar 1. For pillars 2 and 3, just the anticipated changes that will come with a vaccine will fill the bill for me: I’m almost giddy at the prospect of being able to greet my patients with a warm handshake and hug friends again. On the nutrition pillar, I’m going to continue my regular use of Step One and try each and every day to stay true to a whole-food plant-based diet. I know I won’t be perfect all of the time, but I also know that trying to be better is better than simply giving up if I can’t be best.
And what’s the one small positive change I plan to make? I’m going to keep it really simple this year: My one and only resolution is to drink more water.
Lucky for me, I’ve already received a tool to help keep me on track! I will be filling the pictured water bottle twice a day every day.
I’ll report back on how I do in 2022.
In the meantime, from the bottom of my heart, I wish you all the very best for a happy, healthy - and normal - year ahead!