2018 was quite a ride for me. While it was immensely enjoyable, I also felt like it was a never-ending string of planning, activities, events and parties. We got engaged, had two wedding ceremonies, did a big out-of-country trip, planned and executed a national event for work, birthday parties, engagements, a fund-raiser, then it was Christmas parties and New Year celebrations. EH DI AKO NA ANG BUSY! Hahaha!
As a result, I realized that I had spread myself too thin last year. Not with just work, but also with my relationships. Dahil gusto kong maging Darna at kayanin ang lahat, all the stress started to show on my body. Di pa nag-uumpisa araw, pagod na ako level.
I noticed that I became sluggish and fatigued more easily not just because of the amount of activities that I was doing, but because I wasn’t doing the right activities either. Dati kahit saan, kahit anong oras, gora ako sa gimik or labas. But I was also exercising more, watching what I ate and getting enough down-time.
I have officially decided that 2019 will be dedicated to building a better me… and me includes MIND, BODY and SPIRIT. It’s not a new year’s resolution. I would rather look at it as my “New Year, New You” goal-setting exercise.
Goal-setting and achieving your goals, I have learned, is more manageable when you determine what you value most. For me, one of the things I value most is HEALTH. I want to be healthier para hindi na haggardo all the time. I want to be able to do all the things I want to do and actually enjoy it. I am also gluten allergic, a condition which I was only diagnosed with in the last couple of years – which means I really need to watch what I put in my body. And more importantly, I want to be able to be the best version of myself for the people I love and care about.
With that in mind, my goal for 2019 is a new and healthier me! I have written out my action-plans for 2019 to reflect how much I value mine and my family’s health:
1. WALK! WALK! I plan to keep walking to and from work. Besides the obvious work-out, ang saya kaya mag people watch sa umaga! Nakakatuwa din makipag-patintero sa ibang mga naglalakad papasok ng work, or just weaving through the sea of people as you brisk walk your way to the office.
You can say I draw inspiration from my husband when it comes to exercise. The hubs was a competitive marathon runner, while I am competitive at marathon couch-potato-ing. He’s the one that really leads a more active lifestyle and I must say, it’s pretty impressive how strong and fit he is at 50 years old. He’s the one who “encourages” me to move my lazy-butt, with sweet, thoughtful messages like this:
E and I also spoke about doing an activity together as a married couple. With busy careers, we can’t seem to spend as much quality-time together as we would like. So we figured, might as well get couple-time in while working-out. We both want to do something outdoor. Ako, gusto ko mag-beach. Siya, gusto niya mag-golf. So paano?! Hahaha. Ang compromise namin is… hiking. Sana lang talaga may mall sa taas ng bundok na aakyatin namin.
2. VITAMINS EVERY DAY. We now religiously take our Vitamin C every day, for better immune system and skin regeneration. I learned that from my derma, after she noticed I have some discoloration and dark spots from insect bites and my nummular eczema, caused by my gluten allergy. I take my B Complex as well for energy at work and doing all the house errands.
I have gotten my husband into drinking Omega-3 capsules, as this improves one’s mood, according to our physician. Again, he is 50 years young, and drinking Omega-3 can prevent or manage andropause — realistic naman ako na matanda na sya. I make him take the Omega-3 on top of his Centrum multivitamins, which he swears is what gives him his strength and stamina… and I am not complaining. I am in fact quite satisfied. 😉 Good thing that I can buy all these generic and hassle-free over-the-counter at our neighborhood Watson’s on my walk home. With skyrocketing prices of everything, Watsons Generics, particularly the Vitamin C and B Complex tablets, allow us to maintain our regimen na hindi mabubutas ang bulsa.
3. MINDFUL EATING. No more binge eating or drinking. Notice that I did not state “going on a diet.” I have been saying I was going on a diet since I was 12 years old. “Eating healthier” doesn’t quite grasp reality as well. I am still going to want that burger and buy that ice cream.
What I can realistically commit to is mindful eating. I need to listen to my body and also keep asking myself – do I really need to eat this entire rack of rib? Do I really need that next glass of wine? Mindful eating also means balancing out what I irresponsibly ate with a lot of healthy food and activities for the days following the sinful one. Being gluten-allergic limits my choices, somewhat, but it doesn’t mean my relationship with food needs to be boring.
One of my balancing out solutions is drinking acai juice. I’ve been into acai since my health-nut friends introduced it to me a couple of years ago, selling it to me as a great source of anti-oxidants, and can help lower blood pressure and counter-act bad fats in your body. And I don’t mind taking it because I think it’s quite delicious. The most readily available one that I found is Organique Acai Juice Supplement.
4. BLOCK IT! My formerly seafaring husband still needs a bit of coaxing regarding the many benefits of wearing sunblock SPF 50. Wala na daw magagawa sa kulay nya. (Hindi naman ako nangangarap. Hindi ko naman sya pinakasalan para sa malasutlang kutis nya…) But then I try to educate him that wearing sunblock is not about prevention from getting darker skin, but protection from harmful UV rays. I just discovered Belo’s Tinted Face Sunblock SPF 50. It’s great for every day, since I am walking under the sun about 15-20 minutes on work days. And since it doubles as a tinted primer, it easily became part of my make-up routine.
I got for us the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunscreen SPF 50 as well, since E would not go anywhere near “malagkit stuff”.
5. GET DOWN..TIME! Rest is important to health. Minsan nakakalimutan natin, but it is. Parang yun restart or reboot sa phone… sometimes you need to unplug to rejuvenate. While of course it is ideal to unplug at a spa or massage center, it is not essential. I just committed to a few things to do for myself regularly:
- Leave the phone by the door when I arrive at home, at least until I have had dinner. Less stress, and it signals my body and mind to relax.
- A few minutes of meditation in the morning helps me realign. Doesn’t matter if I have had a good sleep or not, a few moments emptying my mind lets me be ready to take on the day.
- Have my own “spa-day” at home once a week. Just put on a face mask, put up my feet and watch “Say Yes to the Dress” — I use the Watsons Facial Mask with Jeju Hanrabong Extract. Exotic sounding and effective for moisturizing and brightening my face. I can have a spa-treatment at a sliver of the cost, and in the comfort of my daster in the living room.
6. CLEAN THAT SKIN! Something I really need to be more disciplined about. I wear make-up every day. Minsan sa pagod, nakakatulog ako with makeup after a long day or an epic night. VERY BAD and kadiri. Nakakatamad naman kasi minsan lalo nap ag late na nakauwi. I used to have a separate solution just for removing eye make-up because I am afraid that the regular products would be too harsh in the sensitive area. But now I found Nivea Acne Clear Micellar Water. It makes make-up removal fast, easy and efficient! It helps remove my blemishes and nasty pimples when I do get them, alongside removing my waterproof mascara. And the fact that I don’t need to rinse it off after, appeals to my over-all katamaran.
7. SULITIN ANG APE. Consulting medical experts is a must. Lalo na sa may mga HMO, sulitin niyo! I do recommend that everyone does the annual medical check. I think prevention is much more manageable than being sent to the hospital and enduring medication or worse, surgery.
This year is sure to bring changes, ups and downs. We can’t be prepared for everything, but we can make a decision to be better. It doesn’t have to be a decision to be better on big things. In fact, it’s better to just do things a little at a time to achieve our final goal – small manageable steps that will eventually let us reach that personal conquest of being a better person.
Happy New Year! Happy New You!