Oprah
Photo: Matthew Rolston

When it comes to maintaining my health, I didn't just fall off the wagon. I let the wagon fall on me. I didn't follow my own fundamental rule of taking care of self first.

My personal philosophy and the philosophy of this magazine is all about living well, filling your own cup so you always have bounty to share with others. And the price I've paid for losing sight of that is more weight. No balance. Less joy.

Everything I know for sure about maintaining a sense of balance and well-being, I allowed to be pushed aside to make room for whatever was masquerading as a priority. I took myself off my to-do list; whatever time was left over is what I gave myself.

Which is how we got here—to the "falling off the wagon" issue.

The first things to go were meditation and gratitude journaling. I had a ritual of morning prayer and meditation, but because I was spending so many nights watching the clock—1:14...3:23...knowing I had to get up at 5:30 and going into panic mode—I eventually became too exhausted to meditate. Same thing for journaling. Then I abandoned exercise. Long, luxurious baths were my big splurge, but ultimately even they got shorter. Too much to do to linger in the tub.

So now everybody's asking about my new plan to take the weight off. And here's what I've come to: My focus is no longer on the weight. My focus this year will be on how to achieve optimum health, get support when I need it, find ways to nurture myself, deepen my spiritual connection—and have some fun.

If I can shift the paradigm from weight to optimum health and well-being, I know for sure my best life is waiting to unfold.

My body is strong. I am grateful to it for having overcome the thyroid imbalance I had last year. I'm even grateful that I had the imbalance: yet another wake-up shake-up call to not take health for granted and to take better care of me.

I share my story with the hope that this year, you'll also be taking better care of you.

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