Hey there how's your health? Mental, physical or otherwise…

Have you decided on any changes to help your health? Or have you like the vast majority of us decided that 2023 is YOUR year. Perhaps you've made a raft of worry and guilt-led decisions disguised as "resolutions". "This year I will not eat a grain of sugar", "A 5k run every day", "no more booze”, "do better, be a more productive human".

This attitude is probably familiar to you. At one point you may have thought or said exactly these. We do so probably with the best of intentions. We more than likely don't realise that we may be setting ourselves up for failures in the future.

Have you ever heard of health-esteem? Self-esteem surely, but health-esteem?

I'll be honest now… We made an error when researching this article actually, we assumed it said self-esteem, that's an easy mistake to make it recognisable, self-esteem is a common and frequently used word here at this organisation and anyway what the heck even is health esteem. When the effects of my several cups of coffee had diminished somewhat and I'd slowed down and read the plain English I claim to speak my entire adult life I saw it was health esteem not self. 

I decided to stick with it though once I started to learn about health esteem and I have to be honest folks I'm all for this, this is definitely my jam. Jam yeah there we go, jam let's go with that. Health esteem is about jam, well no it's not really about jam but it is about one's ability to still eat jam whilst maintaining a healthy organism, body and mind.

Our 5k a day regime's ,or God forbid, strictly zero jam diets are often unrealistic and simply unattainable, especially in the long run. Brain chemistry agrees with psychology on this here.

Small, easily attainable, tangible goals are the key to fostering the change in and the maintenance of an overall healthier lifestyle.

Our Brain rewards us with dopamine when we complete tasks, complete being the key word here, dear readers.

Even small positive steps can make us feel good, taking the stairs instead of the lift. 

Walking the dog, maybe choosing the healthier option for half your weekly dinner options. If not a 5k jog walk to get your milk and leave the car at home.

Some of us who are depressed, or otherwise incapacitated, the reason we are encouraged to get up and try to have a shower at least, is not just about hygiene. It's the small daily tasks that make us feel like we have accomplished something, even something so basic as showering rewards us with some feel good dopamine, being the addicted, sensation seekers that we are, we want to repeat the same behaviours, positive and negative things all the same.

Health esteem is jam because it highlights the benefits of doing something over nothing, small realistic dopamine releasing goals. The ability to be fit and healthy whilst still enjoying life and the wonderful and vast panoply of jams still left to delight in, and surely that is not only a more realistic but enjoyable standard to maintain, it’s also about not being so hard on yourself either when you do decide to indulge. 

So you might and probably will feel fantastic after your first few runs, when the nights draw in and you have been working all day ,it is purely miserable and cold outside. it can seem insurmountable to start the climb to your Everest again in fact the reason why most gyms never see their new January customers again is the same as this.

Sometimes the goals we set ourselves are too big, how about we have this as a new years’ resolution instead, set ourselves easier goals and take frequent stops along the way to taste as much jam as you want to.

Happy 2023 to you all.


-Chris (@wordsfromtheshed)