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Who can count all the health-influencers out there?  They include stress, diet, genetics, exercise, sleep—sure—but there’s another factor, and a main reason why “one size fits all” can never apply itself to health. 

How we “process” our lives has a huge impact on our stress levels, our weight, how we age, even our wrinkles! 

Research has repeatedly shown that mindfulness can upgrade the way we process the world around us.  Thanks to high-tech gadgets that measure everything from our telomeres to our bodies’ bioelectric fields, there’s now no denying that being intentional about HOW we live may be just as important as WHAT we do/eat/etc….AKA mindfulness.

Right about now you might think I’m suggesting we all meditate.  Nope.  While that can be extremely helpful, I’m offering the “daring” idea that we pay attention to what we think about.  That is the core of mindfulness.

What I propose for the healthiest possible new year—and decade—is to pay attention to the HOWHow are you processing your emotions?  How do you feel about that piece of chocolate cake?  How do you feel after you work out?  How do you judge your work environment, your finances?

Thoughts impact our neurotransmitters—chemicals that control pretty much all our bodies’ functions—so if you want to be in charge of your body, be in charge of your thoughts!

Here are a few easy ideas:

  1. Before you even get out of bed in the morning, think of 3 things you are grateful for (that practice helps build new neuronal networks). In studies, this is one of the most significant and long-term practices influencing happiness and hormones.
  2. When you feel a “blip” (that feeling in your throat/chest/wherever that happens when something isn’t going as planned, feels scary, etc.), ask yourself if it’s REALLY worth sending cortisol (which can cause faster ageing and weight loss) throughout your entire body.  Then, take a deep breath!
  3. Use a daily reminder: light a candle to prompt “thought-focus,” read a daily inspirational book. Here’s a system of daily texts I created to help people change the connections in their brain, and make for a happier, healthier new year!

Happy HOW, and Happiest of New Years! 

About the Author: Kelly Corbet

Kelly Corbet is a long-time meditator, author and self-proclaimed loud laugher. She is a lifelong student having studied everything from Chinese to Aerospace Engineering. She has run her own Environmental Consulting Company and written two books. She has degrees from UT and Harvard yet she firmly believes that Love is the most real thing about us and the only thing that matters. Learn more about Kelly at kellycorbet.com.