Share on Google+
How to Mind-map

Three Small Changes for 2015

People make a lot of noise about New Year’s Resolutions, they work for some and not so much for others.  Working in a business that focuses on self-care and transformation, I think I’ve tried every approach to making the right resolutions, setting the right goals, creating the right intentions.  Some years have been more successful and some years have been definite fails.  But I have learned a few important things that might be helpful as you reflect on your life over these next few days, because nothing begs introspection like a new year.  

Habits take 21 days to take root.  The way to stay on track with a new habit is to switch your thinking from “I have to do this *insert new habit* forever, to “I have to stick it out for 21 days.”

Write things down; your goals, your dreams, your frustrations.  It can help you understand yourself.  Try making a Mindmap ( – it’s a technique that can really help you figure out priorities or solve problems or vision the future.  

Practice gratitude – I learned this from my old friend Jerry Posner ( about 20 years ago in his class “Create Miracles in Your Life”; when you are down, nothing can bring you up more than counting your blessings.  We all have so many more blessings than we think.  Adjusting our attitudes from scarcity to abundance attracts abundance.  In my family we have a dinner time ritual; it’s called peak and pit.  We all share and discuss the best part of our day and the worst, it’s a way to teach my young sons gratitude for the things they have.  

SO much has been written on the rules of healthy living by folks with far more clout than I have, all of it very valuable.   What I have learned through years of observation and practice is the keep it simple strategy is often the best – there are three habits that can dramatically alter your life for the better over time.  

Exercise – 30 minutes a day everyday no excuses or exceptions.  It is the baseline for health, humans are meant to move, if you do it outside you get the benefits of vitamin D.   

Water – drink water 64 ounces a day is optimal, add lemon, it makes it even better for you.  This keeps your skin young and your body lubricated and moves toxins though the body.  Learn to carry a water bottle around.  

Meditate – it sounds so much harder and more intimidating than it really is.  In the beginning it can be as simple as sitting quietly and listening to your breath for 5 minutes a day.  If you can’t listen to your breath, think of one thing you are grateful for a focus on it.  If you can’t sit still, still your thoughts when you’re walking, simply appreciate nature.  A great book to read on this is “Wherever You Go, There You Are” by Jon Kabat-Zinn.  

Joanna Roche is a wellness, beauty and retail expert with a long career in the spa industry; she spent eight years with Canyon Ranch and then ran Pierce Mattie PR in NYC where she tried, tested, and worked with hundreds of beauty and wellness brands. She is currently an educator for the Esthetics Spa International speaker series, a member of ISPA and CEW(Cosmetic Executive Women). On Nantucket she is the Spa & Fitness Director at The Westmoor Club and is committed to promoting wellness and providing inspiration and tools for healthy living. Joanna is a runner, occasional yogi, entrepreneur and co-founder of ACKFresh, and mama (or tamer of wild beasts) to Luke and Noah.