Be Fit For Life

with Ellen Cohen-Kaplan

New ways of shifting your perspective in the New Year

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Isn’t exercising more and losing weight kind of an unoriginal and tired pair of New Year’s resolutions? Don’t get me wrong- these are worthy and useful goals and If you’d like to get started I’m glad to help! But I like to look beyond the mundane and think of other ways to change your perspective (if you choose) this coming year. Alternatively, your lifestyle and way of living may be suiting you just fine, and no major changes are needed. The idea that everyone must have New Year’s resolutions is in itself presumptuous! However, if you choose to change a few things, these TED talks may give you some new ways of thinking. I download these talks before plane flights and am always glad to have something in which to immerse myself and take my mind off the turbulence, heavy breathing person beside me (not my husband!) or baby in front of me whose tiny ear canals hurt for the duration of the flight.

So, herewith are a few new insights. For more details, go to the website below:

1. Think of your fears as you would a creative story or fantasy.

2. Walk during meetings and appointments and whenever possible-  sit down less  to pre-empt all kinds of health problems.

3. Stop fragmenting your time by paying too much attention to your digital devices- practice being in the here and now to appreciate the fullness of your life.

4. Read books about things that challenge your current way of thinking- discuss them with others who may expand your current views.

5. Change the way you perceive your stress so that it may actually motivate you towards some positive action.

6. Take charge of your life and allow time to achieve your goals through grit and perseverance. Don’t expect worthwhile goals to be accomplished quickly or easily.

7. Increase your happiness by mindfully appreciating the gifts that life has given you during quiet times, before you fall asleep or when you get up in the morning.

8. Ask for favors, and you may be surprised when you get more of what you want.

9. Be an artist right now-  there’s no time like the present to express your creative side.

We all have hopes, dreams, and ways of spending time that makes us feel fulfilled. It took me until my mid forties to begin doing more of the things that bring joy to my day. The most monumental shift I made was changing careers from that of an Occupational Therapist to fitness trainer as it’s a way for me to self-actualize while working with all my wonderful clients and class participants. Other things I began doing (ranging from several times a week to at least once a month) were simple, easy things to engage in. Exercise is a baseline for me, so I like to try to challenge my body in different ways. Cross-country skiing, a bit of hiking and rock scrambling are things I can now add to the roster. Traveling to a new place thrills me, and Oregon, Vancouver and Arizona filled that need this past year. Doing art has always given me a lot of joy, and a monotype printing class that I took at the New Art Center in Newton really floated my boat! Dancing, either at celebrations or in zumba classes has always felt exhilarating, so it’s now part of my weekly routine. This year, I plan to learn a new way of dancing, and it may be Bollywood or another type I haven’t yet tried.

As you look at this list, decide which ones resonate for you, and go after it! As always, I’m interested to hear your ideas and insights !

Happy 2014!

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