January Detox: Ideas, Checklists, Hacks

Simplifying and substracting are the key(s) to happiness. Which, my friends, applies to everything: beauty, food, lifestyle, work, relationships, and personal goals.

January, the first blank sheet of a new year. What will you write there? Are you excited? Or do you have a “writer’s block”?
Some are making lists with resolutions and goals, some are working on a new routine, and several green beauty bloggers indulge in a No-Buy January challenge. (Here is a fresh and honest view on this challenge by the way: click!)less-is-moreAnd I say: Now is the right time to detox. But not just to lose your Christmas extra pounds. Read on and get inspired to a happy, fulfilled life thanks to the right “less is more” mindset!


Reduce boring, time-eating to-dos by dreaming. Transform your dreams info goals. Live happily ever after!

Time is money, some people use to say. I never quite liked this mercantile phrase, even though I understand the value of time.
But recently, in a “love letter” I received as a customer from Blyss Chocolate’s Lyss, the latter stated, and I quote: “Time is life“.

This resonated a lot with me. Time is life. It’s as simple as that!
Every hour, every minute, every second within your every day is your life. It arrives just for you to do, to think, to decide something, and leaves you with the result of your action.

No action – no result. It’s that simple.

So how do we eliminate zeitnot, how do we detox our agenda and get more time for our lives?

The answer is: if you don’t have any goals, you’ll never be able to manage your time. You’ll be constantly hurrying to check off your to dos – work, family, holiday – and you’ll be struggling to find enough time for cooking healthy food and working out, but you’ll be forever struggling.

This is just a dream. It won’t help you make healthier choices. You can dream to have the perfect figure while enjoying a buttercream cake, for example, or to meet Prince Charming while never actually leaving the house.
Now we’re talking. This is an example of a Dream becoming a Goal.
And here’s your road map becoming a clear to do list. Looks like it’s gonna work!

Only if you have goals, you’ll be able to do something crucial to gain time: to say NO. If your agenda only contains meetings and to do lists, it’s not an agenda but a mess in a book. The secret of top time management is: Set a goal (hint: goals are measurable) and define a road map. A road map includes smaller milestones and the ways to get there, including “costs” (this can be real costs, for example, if you need to take classes or to buy gear, or time costs).

Make your roadmap a treasure map or write your milestones into an annual planner: whatever helps you the most!

Once you have a road map, you can define milestones. Milestones can be noted down in your agenda (more on my own Moleskine hack in a sec), costs can be planned in advance, and it’s easy to say “no” to things that would only cost you extra time and effort but not move you towards any of your goals. If you’re feeling fancy, make yourself a nice roadmap that looks like a treasure map kids use to play with – or like a tabletop game, you know, with dragons, and dungeons and dark forests! Do all it takes to have fun when on your journey – it will keep you motivated!moleskine-hack-imgmoleskine-hack

Checklist 1 – Transition dream>goal:
1. Do I have a dream?
2. Is it doable?
If not 100%, what of it is realistic?
(Hint: winning The Voice/the lottery/the Oscar isn’t)
3. Can I picture myself in that situation, lively, with all senses?
(Example: my book is a bestseller, I’m at a book party being interviewed, I drink cooled champagne, my hands sweat a little bit, I bite my lips nervously, but I have to laugh; I wear my favourite perfume…)
4. What are the milestones that brought me into this exact situation?
(Hint: think backwards, like in a movie – here you are promoting your book, here you are looking for a great cover designer, here you are building your Goodreads community, here you are receiving the script from your proofreader, here you are finishing your book, here you are writing the first chapter of your book, etc.)
5. How much time will each of those milestones take?
(Think from A to Z now)
6. What other activities could possibly block this plan?
(Here we are learning to say “no” – or forgetting about our plan because it doesn’t sound that alluring after all)
What should you discard?
7. What are the to dos to achieve each milestone?


Tick-tock! How long do you need each morning to get ready?timeIf it’s longer than half an hour it’s time to ask yourself why. Unless you’re sitting in a makeup-room in order to get filmed, in this case, spill the deets! 😀
Is it because you’re too tired? Check your vitamin balance.
Is it because you have a lot to take care of: dry or oily skin/hair, blemishes and sun spots, sagging, wrinkles, …? – Don’t fight the symptoms, address the cause! There are many ways to keep your skin toned: massages, facial exercises, home-made cold treatments (check out this LifeInblush article and this recipe for natural ice cubes to fight undereye puffiness DIY). Everything that keeps your skin fresh and dewy from inside – thanks to proper nutrition and a good muscle tone – saves you a lot of time and effort and, of course, product, and is the better anti-aging routine than any serum.

The easiest road map to a better beauty routine:
Avoid products with toxins, allergens, irritants; avoid “shake oil” products like anti-cellulite treatments and creams that promise to “re-program/re-launch/bla-bla your DNA”. If they could do that, seriously, would they be sold in beauty shops and drugstores?


1. You are what you eat: don’t eat junk. When figuring out what to eat, think of each food as of energy supply. Is it really food or just artificially enhanced empty calories?
2. You are how much you eat: don’t eat until you fall from the chair; stop while you’re still hungry.
3. Detox every day: let your body have a 12 hours break from eating – plan your meals so that there are 12 hours between your dinner and breakfast.
4. Don’t forget that your body needs until noon to detox naturally, which means your most “heavy” meal should be your dinner.
5. Don’t nibble in between meals. It might be hard at first but you’ll enjoy the clarity it gives you quite soon. BTW: A latte macchiato is not just nibbling or drinking, it’s a meal’s worth of calories!
6. Drink water. Unless you have heart/kidney/water retention or similar problems, 1.5-2 liters are doable. But as usual, this is an issue to discuss with your doc, especially if you’re trying to practise more sport, more yoga, more cardio…
7. An unrivaled classic: start your “engine” in the morning with a tall glass of water (room temp or warm) with a spritz of lemon juice.
8. My fave time-saver: my (almost) vegan diet. Veggies need less cooking time, it’s as simple.


Apart from getting rid of unpleasant, toxic people and psychic vampires (discussed here), you should also regularly check your address book, digital or paper, for pointless, old entries.toxic-peopleDo you find somebody who you never wished a happy new year for more than two years and who never sent you a text neither? Somebody who makes you feel bad and who you never call back? Why keep their contact? Other than to know when not to pick up the phone 😉

Or do you stumble across a name you wish you’ve called but could find no time? Why not call right away? Good friendships can “hibernate” during even years of silence and experience a new bloom.


As you can see, this is really no rocket science. All you gotta do is simplify and substract.
Why do so many of us fail, then?
Because they lack willpower.
And sometimes, dear Adventurers, this lack of willpower is also a matter of undiagnosed problems (example: hypothyroidism) or malnutrition (example: junkfood and vitamin deficiency).

Now here’s a Quest for YOU!enter-your-new-life

Do you have a wish (a goal) that you think you need a little bit of extra motivation to achieve?
Share it with me and other readers in the comments below! Tell us what your goal is and what steps you need to accomplish it. Sharing it will give you that precious little kick to get it started. And who knows: maybe we’ll have helpful ideas, too!?
Don’t be shy! You can only win!


Geeking out about all things truly green, healthy and ethical over at BEAUTYCALYPSE.com (Avatar illustration by A. Goncharenko)

23 Responses

  1. kudos to you for calling out the road map to perfect skin. It cracked me up when I saw in Elle or Vogue (senility is grabbing hold of me at the moment) that the “january beauty trend” was luminous skin….like you can just go out and buy it. Ha!

  2. This is the KICK I needed. But first! Receiving the Blyss chocolate has made a huge difference to my chocolate consumption; I don’t want (have no appetite for!) my other chocolate anymore which means I am not eating so much sugar junk and I feel much better! 2) I am double checking my consumer habits with the pleasing result of my lowest credit card bill in 3 years. And because I am being judicious, the tank of petrol in the car has lasted nearly a month! 3) I have made a start on my book project; not a good one,unfortunately, but I am now asking a clever son for some editing help.

          1. Oh great to know the card arrived; I was not sure about the address. It didn’t seem sufficiently detailed. I like any sharp/tart fruit. I like sharp apples, plums, blackcurrants, blueberries, lemons, pineapples.

              1. Yum! Tart apples in winter are super. Do you do baked apples, with dried fruit/nut/spice stuffing in the hollowed out core of the apple? That’s an old time favourite in our family.

                1. Yes, yes! I would like to try them with coconut oil or cashew nut butter. Usually I have raisins and almonds or walnuts ,or simply dates. So interesting that it is a popular recipe elsewhere too.

  3. BLYSS chocolate

    Do you have a wish (a goal) that you think you need a little bit of extra motivation to achieve? — yes i do! I took your advice of the tumeric and have made a lovely glass bottle of it and stocked the pantry ready to refill every few days. Have made a note on the mirror in the bathroom reminding me of lemon / water, and mindful cleansing pre-lunch. Will let you know how it goes. Thank you for your lovely advice. The way you do, is empathic, i don’t feel lecturing or any sort of moral highgrounds. This is what I appreciate about your sharing xoox

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