Change your lifestyle and enjoy a healthy new you in 2013
HANDS up who has made a new year's resolution? Keep your hand up if your pledge revolves around something to make you feel better about yourself, such as losing weight, giving up smoking or chocolate, being a better partner or taking up regular exercise.
And who doesn't want to feel good? We all do. Most new years, as I noticed my belt beginning to tighten, I used to heave myself off the sofa to lackadaisically sign up to one of the hundreds of resolutions that seduced me with "100% satisfaction guaranteed" all in the vague hope it would make me feel great. It never did.
Let's not pretend. The slog is all too much like hard work and no sooner has New Year been toasted and sung in then we are quite happy to quietly slip back into old habits and hold on to our curves, resume those stress-induced cigarettes, resort to chocoholic solutions to our problems and let the jogs peter out altogether.
Of course, we all know that true happiness has nothing to do with the weighing scales, the number of followers we have on Twitter, the gems that embellish our fake eyelashes or our version of iPad.
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But you would think going by the trends of "Me Generation" for whom the idols are money, image and fame, writes psychologist Jean Twenge, it is.
No wonder then that, in the consumerist society of today, so bent on instant fixes, people of all ages find it hard to find anything that feels gratifying for long.
But the picture is not all me, me, me. Being self- focused provides a stronger dispensation to embrace our big hearts.
"Britain remains one of the world's most generous nations", according to the Charities Aid Foundation and, despite the recession, we still forked out £9.3 billion last year.
This year, instead of recommending another miracle fix that we know won't last beyond the hangover, I offer you a resolution that is a bit about you and making you feel better and a bit about showing you care.
It reflects the big themes of 2013 that affect us all: persisting thrift, environmental disorder and the health challenges linked to obesity and sex.
Eliminating the misery that animals killed for food endure and becoming vegetarian is a single step that all at once can make you feel lighter, thinner, fitter, more caring, healthier, planet saving, bootylicious and glowing from an act of kindness.
You're likely to live longer, too, to enjoy its benefits and it's good for those of us on a budget.
There's no denying the surveys that show lentil lovers have become legendary in their stamina and prowess in the sack.
Last year, Men's Health published another report that recommended its readers cut out meat, fish and dairy from their diet to perform like a pro between the sheets.
All you have to do now is rejoice in life after Christmas to feel good – not just for this new year but for all new years to come.
It's not difficult and it's not nutty or extreme to show you care. It's just a simple act of kindness to yourself, the rest of mankind and millions of animals will thank you for sparing them their lives.