The start of the year is always a time for resolutions, making life decisions and promises for change. This ought to include a desire for a healthier lifestyle and a quest to the best version of oneself.

Here are some valuable tips:-

  • Exercise at least 30 minutes every day
  • Eat a balanced diet including fruit and vegetables – “Eat the rainbow”
  • Drink 8 glasses of water a day
  • Limit alcohol intake
  • Sleep at least 7 hours each night
  • Learn a new skill/activity
  • Volunteer your time
  • Socialise with friends and family
  • Spend at least 5 minutes a day in quiet
  • Dedicate one hour a day to self-maintenance, e.g. writing, drawing, reading, a bath
  • Quit smoking
  • Get an annual health check from your doctor
    • Do self-checks as advised, e.g. regular breast exams
    • Also get specific tests/exams, e.g. pap smears for women, mammograms for women age 40 and over, prostrate exams for men age 40 and over.

Goal setting is an important aspect to achieve any of the above and goals need to be SMART. This acronym stands for:-

  • S= Specific – clear and well defined
  • M=Measurable – know how far away the completion is and when you have achieved the goal
  • A=Achievable – a goal that can be accomplished
  • R=Realistic – possible taking into account the resources, time and effort
  • T=Time bound – have a clear time frame

Goal setting using the SMART acronym is an effective tool that provides the clarity, focus and motivation a person needs to achieve goals. It can also improve an individual’s ability to reach them by encouraging a person to define their objectives and set a completion date.

For a person to function optimally, the entire body and mind must be in harmony. Money management and financial wellbeing are often overlooked however it is noted that there are direct links to mental health. Financial wellbeing is the state of being financially happy and healthy. This includes making the most of an adequate income to enjoy a reasonable quality of life and having the skills and capabilities to manage money well, both on a daily basis and for the future. “Poor financial well-being impacts on health in terms of poor psychological well-being, higher stress and anxiety levels, and lower levels of good health.” (CIPD, 2017).

Making lifestyle changes requires dedication and sustained commitment. A person must continue to strive to be the best version of themselves.

What specific intentions have you set for yourself?

Jolene King is Principal Consultant of 246 King Consulting ( She is a trained Occupational Psychologist, experienced Human Resource professional, is a qualified Mental Health First Aider and is trained in mental health conditions and exercise, health and nutrition. She can be reached at