How to keep your mojo over Christmas

A clock with Christmas decorations

It’s the silly season! No matter if you celebrate Christmas or not, we all know this time of year can get incredibly busy. There are extra things to do and often a multitude of end of year activities that seem to start earlier every year (I have already been to five!). With all of this going on, it’s easy for our routines to get really mixed up. One of the downsides of this is that many people can “lose their mojo” when it comes to doing the right things by their health and fitness. This is less than ideal if it means your problems get worse or interfere with your enjoyment of the festive season.

The three most common things people seem to give up when their routine goes out of kilter are exercise, relaxation / self-care strategies and dietary care. We know it’s hard enough getting people to do these things at the best of times. Fewer than 50% of Australians engage in the recommended minimum of 150 minutes of cardiovascular exercise every week, and an even lower 7% eat five serves of vegetables daily. It’s no wonder these are the first things to get discarded when life gets a little crazy.

So how can we maintain some semblance of order amidst the festive chaos? How can we have our (metaphorical or literal) cake and eat it too? Read on for some tips to help you get through the silly season AND keep your mojo too.

  1. Set a reminder

Many people find setting reminders in their phone, computer or diary works really well. Some people even schedule or block off a time in their calendar to do things, just like they would if they were making an appointment. This can work really well for any type of exercise, including pelvic floor exercises, and even for making time to do meditation or relaxation.

The other important thing to know is that if your reminder does not end up working for you, change it to something that does. For example, if you have set an alarm to remind you to do your exercises at 6pm, but it turns out that’s right when you prepare dinner every night, change your reminder to another time of day that will be more realistic for you.

  1. Use technology

This could be as simple as just using your device to set calendar reminders, as mentioned above. But if you want something more specific, there are literally apps for everything these days! They can be a great way to keep you on track. Some different ideas for apps you may find useful include:

  • Pelvic floor specific apps – there are so many, but my favourite is one called Squeezy (from the NHS)
  • Reminder apps – so many! Some allow you to check things off when you do them, or give you motivational feedback if you do something consistently over a period of time
  • Apps focusing on mindfulness or meditation – Smiling Mind, Calm and Headspace are some of the better ones
  • Apps focusing on gratitude – simply recording 3 things you are grateful for each day can be very therapeutic
  • Apps focusing on diet or food – again there are many. Some will help you keep track of calories. Others are more specific to certain dietary restrictions (eg, for Coeliacs to avoid gluten, or FODMAP diet apps)
  1. Link in to a daily routine

While a lot of your routine may have taken its own holiday right now, there are still certain things you are probably doing every day, such as brushing your teeth and showering. Use these routine activities to your advantage, and plan your set activity at the same time. This is often a fantastic way to remember to do pelvic floor exercises or stretches – simple exercises that don’t take too long. You could even use it for a short meditation reminder.

  1. Find a friend

Many people find it easier to keep to an exercise or diet plan if a friend or family member does it with them. You can keep each other accountable, motivate each other and share in your achievements.

  1. Book a follow-up with your health professional (and stick to it!)

Studies have shown people who follow up regularly with their health professional have better outcomes. They can help to keep you accountable, stay motivated and change or progress things for you as required.

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and new year season and get some rest and relaxation – without losing your mojo!

Just a reminder the clinic will be closed for the next few weeks and I will not be contactable until 9th January.

Yours in pelvic health.


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