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Tips for a healthier and happier New Year

Posted by Patricia_Marie
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on Monday, 04 January 2016
Dear readers,

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Happy, Healthy, and Peaceful New Year, and have included some tips to encourage this. However, sometimes life doesn't always run smoothly, and I therefore continue to look forward to helping and advising you with any problems that you may encounter.

We can often be pulled in many directions and rarely stop to recharge. Prioritise the important tasks, such as work, but ensure you create a good balance of relaxation time too. Try meditation – switching off and relaxing your mind is an excellent way to take stock of life and find peace, even just for five minutes, and enhances wellbeing.

The festive period may have left you feeling sluggish due to lack of exercise and overindulging. Feel more energised by making healthier eating choices, and raise fitness levels as well as overall happiness by increasing your exercise. You don't necessarily have to rush out and join a gym. Small changes can make a big difference, such as walking instead of taking the car.

If you are a smoker, giving up is probably the biggest simple step you can take to improve your health. Sometimes this addiction cannot be fought alone - help is only a phone call away. Ring the NHS Stop Smoking Service on 0300 123 104. Kicking this habit will increase your chances of living a longer, far healthier life.

Alcohol has been linked to obesity, cancer and liver damage. If you regularly drink too much alcohol, it can make you feel anxious, and interfere with your sleeping patterns. This habit needs to be broken, so, instead of heading for the bottle, try a relaxing bath, and have some non-alcoholic drinks in the fridge to enjoy. Diverting your thoughts to something pleasurable will help keep you focused. If you really can't resist, allocate dinner time only to enjoy a glass of alcohol.
If you think you may have a problem with alcohol call Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) on: 0800 9177 650

Do something different - be it embarking on a part time course at your local college, joining a dance class, or taking up cross stitching. There is nothing more empowering than learning a new skill, and new found enjoyment helps keep depression at bay.

If you are experiencing financial gloom, make 2016 the year to address this. Start by listing your income and expenditure, then plan a budget and stick to it. Give yourself rules, such as leaving your debit and credit cards at home. You will be amazed how much you can save by not having available cash to hand. If you can, tear up your credit card to avoid the temptation to spend unnecessarily. Ignoring any creditors only makes things worse, so be brave and contact them to arrange an affordable repayment plan, thereby regaining control.

If you are in a relationship with either a partner or a friend, which is causing you to feel unhappy, resentful, exhausted, drained, or bad about yourself, take responsibility and either work on improving the relationship, or sever ties, and spend more time with those who make you happy.

And finally, some wise words
'Year's end is neither an end nor a beginning, but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instil in us'. Hal Borland

NY Resolutions

Posted by Mum About Town
Mum About Town
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on Tuesday, 07 January 2014
The pressure is on. That new year, new you type of pressure that is only conjured up by… yourself. But, as I sit here trying to work out what on earth my resolutions should be, I’m wondering why I didn’t feel compelling to improve myself on 30th November. I mean, what’s the big deal, this is only a new month. A new month which just so happens to fall at the beginning of the year.

2013 was just fine. My tax return was (almost) late, I lost both car keys and had to have the car towed away (at huge expense), I told a hideous client to take a running-jump and I had to have yet another boob operation, but the year really was just fine.

Anyway the statistics are bleak: only 8% of those who resolve actually stick to their plan. Mostly the resolutions we aim for are unrealistic, sadistic and plain old boring. Who wants to feel that they HAVE to read four books a month, send a handwritten letter to an old aunt or give up something fun that they enjoy (despite it being terrible for their health)?

If your new year’s resolution is to diet, I bet you’re reading this with an empty tummy and a sour face. And if you’ve promised yourself to visit the gym more often over the next 12 months, then I’m afraid you’re the worst statistic of all. You’re absolutely destined to fail.

Honestly, I don’t resolve to change too much of myself this year. And I’m welcoming 2014 with open arms.

You can read more musings from Emma at

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