Get yourself fit for a year of challenges ahead

It's hard to stay focused on internal goals, when the external world intrudes so awkwardly

Share
Related Topics

Ten days into the new year, and how's it going for you? Still not touched a drop of alcohol? Sticking to the 5:2 diet? Or have you gone all macrobiotic in the hope that you'll end up looking like Gwyneth Paltrow?

How are you finding those early-morning sessions in the gym? Detox? Green tea and psyllium husks? Or did the passing of the old year encourage you to re-assess your personal life? Have you sought to rekindle the fire in your relationships, just like Dave and Nick? The new you does take quite a commitment to maintain, particularly when the backdrop provided by what might be called real life is, depressingly, rather familiar. It's as if the world doesn't know we're now on a new page. Can you believe that it is only 16 days ago that we were looking forward to Christmas? That feeling of levity, jollity and frivolity is now but a distant memory, and in its place is something much less attractive: austerity, austerity and austerity.

While we were munching away on our eating and drinking sabbatical, even the dread fiscal cliff assumed almost mythological proportions, as if it were part of the landscape in The Hobbit, and although we may have been able to avoid the latest from the economic frontline over Christmas, we will find it less easy to sidestep its consequences as 2013 progresses.

Those who have travelled to work by train this week have already pushed closer towards their own precipice with some hefty price hikes, and the appearance of the Prime Minister and his civil partner this week to renew their vows with their talk of "economic challenges", "difficult decisions", and a "Ronseal deal" was a gloomy reminder that not only have we got to creosote that fence, but that more personal, financial pain is on the way. (By the way, on the subject of Ronseal, I would like to know what it actually said on the tin marked Coalition, given that, even according to their own audit, they have missed dozens of election pledges.)

No wonder so many people give up their new year regime before January is even out: it's hard to stay positive, and focused on internal goals, when the background noise of the external world intrudes so awkwardly. I did my first yoga class the other day, and apart from discovering that I have a quite astonishing lack of flexibility, I found the whispered exhortations to clear my mind and centre my energy rather difficult to achieve. Try as I did, I found it impossible to stop wondering about interest rates, what's going to happen to the property market, even the Leveson Inquiry. (It's not settled yet, plenty more discussions about self-regulation, and Hugh Grant on Newsnight, to come, I'm afraid.)

These are difficult times, and many experts are predicting that 2013 is the year when the global economic situation really hits home, so to speak. All the more important, therefore, that we are fit and strong to meet the challenge. So my advice is this: don't worry about things you can't control, and stick to the mung beans!

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Executive / Digital Marketing Executive

£26000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A luxury beauty house with a nu...

Recruitment Genius: Housekeepers - Immediate Start

£8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This company are currently recruiting new exp...

Recruitment Genius: Head Concierge

£25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This award winning Property Man...

Recruitment Genius: Content, SEO and PPC Executive

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has ari...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Clean energy should be our mission to the moon

Martin Rees
Angela Merkel and David Cameron say goodbye in the Bundeskanzleramt after their meeting in Berlin, Germany, 29 May 2015  

The complacency of Europhiles could lose them the referendum

Steve Richards
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral