Well after 80 days, we finally made it through what felt like the longest January in history. Welcome to February, the month of straight-to-DVD Lifetime original romance movies, and wishing it were spring! Last month, we challenged you to take on some resolutions that are designed to help everyone have a more amazing year, but this month is devoted to your own resolutions. Whether or not you're still sticking with your personal goals for 2018, here are some great suggestions for some late add-on resolutions for you to try out.
Eat Your Feelings in a Responsible Way
While one of the major cornerstones of February is sweets, where you source your chocolate can make all the difference in terms of its health benefits and impact on the earth. So how do you get that same sweet sensation during your annual February 14th ritual without supporting unsustainable business practices? No, the answer is not carob, so let's just leave that back in the 1980s where it belongs. The answer is fair-trade and bean-to-bar chocolate businesses. Fair trade and bean-to-bar chocolates are not only healthier and better tasting, but they are also better for the environment (Independent, 2017) and provide a living wage for cacao farmers and handlers (HuffPost, 2016). I understand that not everyone is celebrating love this February 14th, but there are plenty of reasons to drown your feelings in a few pounds of chocolate, so make sure those pounds of chocolate are not only made of real chocolate, but also sustainably sourced in a non-exploitative way. Check out First Natural Foods Co-Op in Corvallis to choose from a large selection of fair-trade chocolate, and click here to save $3! If you're in Eugene, Mosaic Fair Trade Collection has a dark chocolate and orange bar that is DIVINE. Click here to save 15%!
Get Your Heart Rate Up
It can be really hard to stick to your New Years resolutions, especially when it comes to exercise. If you're feeling intimidated by gym memberships and not having enough free or family time, biking to work might be the perfect alternative for you. If you can, biking to work can be a very rewarding and easy way to get your daily exercise in, and since you need to be at work, it's incentive to push yourself. If biking to work sounds daunting, try starting out by biking to a local Farmers' Market on the weekend. Head over to Five Star Sports in Corvallis and browse their large selection of exercise gear. Click here to get a free pair of socks when you buy a pair of new shoes!
Try Something New and Creative
Don't forget that your creative muscles need a workout, too! Try something less physically straining and consider mental exercise. Books, puzzles, and art are all really beneficial for mental health, especially creativity. If you think you're bad at art, I'm not going to tell you that "practice makes perfect" or "good art comes with time" because regardless of the end result, engaging with your creative side helps decrease the effects of depression, dementia, and isolation (PubMed, 2006). Do what you like and enjoy doing it, even if you can't paint like Rembrandt. Check out the Material Exchange Center for Community Arts in Eugene and save lots of money by buying used materials. Click here to save 25%!
Ban the Bland
Had enough of your plain beans and rice? Plain chicken and lentils? Take it up a notch and get out of your comfort zone. 2018 is the year to try new flavors so prepare your tastebuds because it's time to add some depth to your meals with spices. Apparently the next big foodie craze, Gochujang is a Korean fermented red chili pepper paste, but if you're like us and fermented spices aren't your thing, check out Lao Gan Ma. Lao Gan Ma is a popular Chinese hot chili oil that is AMAZING on everything. I put it on everything I eat. Self care is important and adding spice to your dishes is one way to love yourself. Both of these products are available at Uwajimaya in Beaverton and when you click here you'll save $10!
Out With the Old, In With the New (For You)
So now that you're exercising and being more creative and eating more responsibly, it's the perfect time to update your wardrobe. I know it's sad, but you know that it is time to let go of that sweater that you haven't worn in 5 years. The great thing about cleaning out your wardrobe is that now you have space for new things! Stop by Revolve Resale in Eugene and donate your unwanted clothes before checking out their wide selection of gently used and vintage clothes. Click here to save 20% on your next purchase!
Lastly, the best way to keep yourself motivated to stick to your resolutions is to treat yourself. Exercise and eating right are important for self care, but so is just sitting back and relaxing. Take a breath, put your feet up, and get a massage. Click here to check out our long list of massage and wellness deals.
Power through February and onto the rest of 2018 with friends. Many resolutions are easier to adhere to with encouragement from your peers, so if you can find someone to join you on your renewal, you can look out for each other.
Keep on keeping on!
Warmest wishes from everyone at Chinook Book