Sunset orange, burnt siena, bright yellows, and deep reds… Vivid leaves of vibrant colors falling from the trees and scattering like a brilliant carpet on the ground! …YEP, it’s FALL!!
From oversized sweaters, comfy flannels and cozy scarves to mugs full of tea and pumpkin-spiced EVERYTHING, I just LOVE this time of year! October is one of the BEST months… it’s chilly enough to dress cozy, but not TOO cold that you can’t stand to be outside. October marks the first full month of fall and a crisp fresh beginning! You all know I love ‘fresh starts’ as much as ‘taking baby steps’ to build a healthier lifestyle! So this month I have some goals of my own that I think we could all apply to our busy lives to make October a little bit healthier, and a whole lot happier!
Here are 6 Goals for an ‘Awesome October!’:
1. Add Variety to Your Diet!- “Variety is the spice of life!” I’m all about a healthy routine when it comes to eating right, but that doesn’t mean your diet has to be boring! Sometimes I find myself eating the same thing for lunch or the same ‘healthy’ dessert, but honestly, this isn’t very satisfying… sure it may be an easy habit to eat the same foods regularly, but try to add a little “spice” to your diet this month! Maybe that means grabbing a new vinaigrette for your salads, fresh cranberry relish, sweet potatoes and creamy soups. How about some spaghetti squash at lunch? Some pomegranate seeds on your spinach salad? Roasted autumn squash at dinner? Or even a mug of apple cider or pumpkin hot cocoa for dessert?! Embrace the delicious seasonal foods fall has to offer!
2. De-stress- Where to begin?! This semester I’ve been so busy with school work and it has definitely added an extra measure of stress in my life. I find myself passing up time with friends to work on a paper or finish a project. While that’s fine to do once in a while, it’s important to prioritize responsibilities and make time for yourself. This past weekend my best friend came up to visit and I finally got to take a break from all my school work and just relax. It’s important to do what we need to do, but it’s just as important to take a deep breath… sometimes we just NEED a break!
3. Clean up- It may not be time for “Spring Cleaning”, but FALL cleaning is just as important! I’m naturally a bit disorganized (despite all the efforts of my mom to make me organized). But I always find that I’m much more efficient and I think so much more clearly when I ‘clean up’ a bit! Psychology shows that a ‘clean house creates a clear mind’! It may feel like there’s no time to organize that closet, sort through your backpack or straighten up your desk, but it’s almost always worth the effort when you do.
4. Eat Real, Nourishing Foods- You guys know I’m all about ‘Food Freedom’ — learning to balance your treats in a natural, healthy way. I’ve been ‘gluten intolerant’ for a few years now, but recently I’ve had some strange stomach aches. In an attempt to feel my best, I’ve been choosing more nourishing foods. I focus more on quantity and portion control and I allow for QUALITY treats everyday! Try 85% dark chocolate over a Snickers bar, or a raw vegan dessert with only 5 or 6 ingredients instead of a processed cake roll! You’ll feel so much better eating these more nourishing foods, and you’ll actually find that they can be delicious and quite satisfying, too.
5. Go Walking- I don’t play sports and I’m no ‘Gym Junkie’, but that’s not to say I sit on my bum all day long! About a month and a half ago I bought a Fit Bit Pedometer as a way to track my steps and ‘up’ my goals. I aim to walk at least 10,000 steps a day and find that walking is so natural and therapeutic… Fit Bit wirelessly syncs online, so I get emails with how many steps I’ve walked, calories I’ve burned, flights of stairs I’ve gone up and how many miles I’ve traveled each week. This past week I walked over 30 miles! …and the best part about walking is that it hardly feels like a workout. When, it really is!
6. Have Fun!- Life’s TOO short to waste time feeling stressed and anxious. Unfortunately, I’ve been a bit stressed lately, so it’s MY goal this month to focus on the joys of life and to enjoy each day! So go ahead, plan a little fall harvest party, admire the fall foliage, make a leaf rubbing, go on a hayride, pick some apples, carve a pumpkin… Enjoy the beautiful change of seasons! Philippians 4:6-7 reminds me, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
What about you?! Are you excited for October?! What are your goals this month?!