WELLNESS WEDNESDAY: How to KEEP New Year’s Resolutions

A notepad with pen ready to write resolutionsWillpower or “trying harder” is not enough to keep us on track toward our goals. Last week we provided a few ideas to make our resolutions easier to stick with, this week we will discuss ways to make them more enjoyable.

One strategy is called “temptation bundling.” If we bundle or combine something that we enjoy with the behavior we are trying to motivate, it can make the change more enjoyable. If you are trying to create a new exercise habit, first find an exercise routine that you actually enjoy! If that’s still hard to find, pick a habit or routine you DO enjoy, one that you can combine with your new exercise routine. This could be a specific type of audiobook or TV show that you can only listen to or watch while doing your new exercise until you get used to it. It could also be a specific food that you reward yourself with after the exercise or a certain friend or person you don’t get to see often that you can exercise with.

It’s important to find some way to combine what you enjoy with what you are trying to do, otherwise you won’t last more than a few weeks with these important new goals you’ve set!

We hope you are enjoying your new, healthier routines to kick off 2020!

WELLNESS WEDNESDAY: How to KEEP New Year’s Resolutions in 2020

A notepad with pen ready to write resolutionsAs we begin 2020, many students and families have set exciting new goals for this year. Each Wellness Wednesday post through the month of January will provide some quick tips for actually keeping those resolutions. These tips are guided by research on how people form and maintain both healthy and unhealthy habits.

This week’s tip: Renewed motivation, or willpower, isn’t enough to keep you committed.

Committing to “try harder” will almost always fail. Instead, it’s best to find ways to make your new commitments easier to stick with. We can start by asking this honest question – How can I make this commitment easier to maintain?

Here is an example, if you’ve committed to a new exercise routine, try sleeping in your exercise clothes and preparing your breakfast the night before. Then, when your alarm goes off to exercise, you aren’t just relying on your willpower at 6 AM (which will always be weak). Those two simple steps will eliminate some of your quickest excuses and make it easier to get out the door.

Next week, we will have more examples and strategies for making our commitments more enjoyable, so stay tuned!

WELLNESS WEDNESDAY: Home for the Holidays

Child reading a book outside a windowOne of the biggest secrets to a happier life is focusing on what you can give, rather than what you should receive. Holiday shopping and gift-giving can be stressful and distracting from what we are truly trying to “give” each holiday season.

While things like baby yodas, movies, hoverboards, video games, phones, and toys are all exciting – what we can truly give this holiday season is our time and attention to those around us.

Having a “home” means having somewhere to feel safe. Having a “home” means that we feel surrounded by people who care about us.

Our challenge to the students and families this holiday season is to offer a “home,” a sense of connection and caring. We hope that each of our students and their families use the time over winter recess connecting with each other, reaching out to friends, and creating a “home” for those around us this holiday season.

How will you offer a “home” to others for the holidays?

For more information on health and wellness visit wellness.jordandistrict.org

WELLNESS WEDNESDAY: Getting a Good Night’s Sleep Matters

Clock set to 2:03This past weekend daylight savings ended and most students got an extra hour of sleep. Just one extra hour of sleep makes a big difference in how patient, alert, attentive, and safe drivers are on the road. In fact, studies show that when this time change happens every fall there is a significant decrease in car accidents nationwide.

When students get enough sleep, their minds and bodies are able to perform at their best. Sleep affects physical health, mental health, and brain functioning. Sleep is not a luxury, it’s a necessity.

When students consistently don’t get enough sleep, it affects their decision making, emotional stability, physical health, and overall wellness. Furthermore, they aren’t able to learn and remember as easily.

Sleep is one of the most overlooked aspects of student’s academic and emotional wellness and it makes a HUGE difference. So rather than rely on a time change to improve your patience, alertness, emotional health, and overall brain functioning; create a healthy habit of sleeping at least eight hours every night.

For more information on health and wellness visit wellness.jordandistrict.org

Wellness Wednesday: Stop, Slow Down, and Smell the Snickers

Jack-O-Lantern buckets filled with candyYou may not like Snickers, and that’s okay, you can still fulfill this Halloween wellness challenge.

This is a challenge to savor the moment and be present (including putting the phone down) whether you are laughing with a friend, entering a costume contest, enjoying a sweet treat, or meeting a new neighbor. An essential part of reaping the wellness benefits of positive moments is savoring and recognizing them while experiencing them. Without an occasional, focused pause you may miss the benefits of positive experiences.

Your challenge, if you choose to accept it, is to savor each positive moment that may come your way this Halloween. Rather than quickly devouring piles and piles of candy, or quickly shuffling from door to door gathering candy, try and hang on to a positive moment or experience and fully engage. Savoring is a practice and a strategy that will help you feel more fulfilled in everyday life moments that may seem…well, “everyday.”

Opportunities to savor surround us, so engage with the world, pause for a few moments this Halloween, and have a great week!