Creating Radiant Wellness

January is one of the darkest months of the year in the northern hemisphere. We are meant to go inward during the dark months and reflect.
— Dr. Deb Kern
Image credit Lisbeth Cheever-Gessaman | She Who Is

Image credit Lisbeth Cheever-Gessaman | She Who Is

by Dr. Deb Kern

If you Google “New Year’s Resolutions,” you will find more than 34,000,000 results.

As a fitness and yoga instructor for the past 35 years, I’ve had a front row seat to the frenzied activity that results from the setting of those resolutions.  In fact, the entire fitness and wellness industry counts on millions of people plunging into new fitness and diet regimes on January 1st. And yet, it is reported that 85-95% of those resolutions fail. 

For years I simply witnessed the New Year’s Resolution phenomena. Then, as I began my studies in yoga and Ayurveda I started to understand where we’ve gone wrong. One of the fundamental errors we’ve made has to do with timing. January is one of the darkest months of the year in the northern hemisphere. We are meant to go inward during the dark months and reflect. If we were to follow Mother Nature’s patterns, we would use January to slow down, relax and identify all the areas in our lives that are blocking us from living our fullest potential. Then as the days began to grow longer we would move into action. 

Another error we make is that we leave out crucial steps. Here are the first four (of seven) steps I’ve developed for creating radiant wellness:

1. Relax—we must come into stillness in order to deeply sense what is going on in our body, mind and emotions. Slow down. Remove tension from the body. Meditate. Depending on how crazy your life has been, this step may take a day, a week or a month. But it must come first.

2. Plug energy leaks—the whole goal of making lifestyle changes is to live our lives to their fullest potential. But if we are leaking our energy, no amount of green juice or exercise will accomplish that goal. Basically, we must stop doing some things in order to make room and energy for new things. How do you leak energy? Here are a few ideas from my own list:

  • Compulsively checking emails, Facebook and texts.
  • Trying to make everything okay for everyone.
  • Fear that I’m not leading people effectively.
  • Criticizing myself for my looks, how I parent, how I don’t have a garden this year…
  • Worrying … about anything. 
  • Taking phone calls when it wasn’t convenient for me to stop what I am doing.
  • Clutter.
  • Doubting myself.
  • Wanting things to be different than they are.

3. Identify what is blocking you from living to your fullest potential—this can include items from your energy leak list, but there may be new items that come to mind such as:

  • Eating processed foods.
  • Drinking alcohol.
  • Staying in unhealthy relationships.
  • Not exercising.
  • Being disorganized.
  • Starting projects but not finishing them.
  • Holding on to resentment.
  • Hanging out with people who don’t share the same philosophy of life and well-being.

4. Clear the way—once you have identified items in step #3, you can create intentions/goals to make changes. This is where most people start their New Year’s resolutions. The following are some of the most powerful ways to clear the way:

  • Yoga Asana
  • Pranayama (breathing practices)
  • Prayer
  • Meditation
  • Clean diet
  • Selfless Service
  • Journaling
  • Dance
  • Exercise
  • Screaming/shouting/crying
  • (For more support in these actions, click here)

If you are wanting to set intentions for the New Year, I suggest you begin with these steps to help you sustain and expand all the good you are creating.


Dr. Deb Kern

Health Scientist and Movement Goddess

Deb Kern, Ph.D. is a teacher of vision, a sought-after intuitive guide, health scientist, author and speaker. She shares her many modalities of healing and insight with women of all ages in her retreats and workshops, and offers one-on-one Divine Your Life sessions with true soul seekers from all over the world.

Connect with Dr. Deb Kern at DrDebKern.com.