The point system for the Next Right Decision is used to help people track their decisions, rewarding healthy decisions and choices. Remember, what exactly is healthy will vary from person to person. Also, what is a healthy decision one day, may not be healthy the next day. Example, if you just biked 45 miles and are beat up and injured, the Next Right Decision is to rest up and allow your body to recover.

This point system is just a guideline to encourage healthy choices. Here is an explanation  of the scoring system and any components that maybe unfamiliar or confusing.

Exercise

Being physically active is important for a variety of reasons, physical and mental health are both influenced by your activity levels. This includes a variety of activities that elevate the heart rate and are physically engaging, here is a list of activities that this includes, however, other physical activities can be included.

*Running/Hiking/Walking *Skiing/Snowboarding *Going to the Gym
*Yoga/Pilates/Stretching *Soccer *Softball/Baseball
*Swimming *Basketball *Dancing/Gymnastics
*Hockey *Tennis *Golf
*Martial Arts *Football *Training/Weightlifting
*Climbing/Mountaineering *Aerobics *Other Sport/Physical Activity

Exercise Scoring
20 minutes= 3 points
45 minutes= 6 points
60+ minutes=10 points
Rest day=10 points (This means that you have been exercising several days in a row or just had an incredibly challenging day before and your body needs a rest and recovery, on days like this Yoga and stretching may be more valuable than doing nothing and count as exercise)

Gratitude

Being grateful is linked to overall happiness. Read more about the importance over gratitude and how to be more grateful here. Being grateful both internally and externally is important to mental health. This is a choice that you can make and allows you to recognize all you have as a person.

Gratitude Scoring
Thanking at least 3 people= 3 points
Chose being positive over negative=3 points
I wrote down 3 things I am grateful for= 5 points
I participated in the gratitude activity=5 points (Write a letter to someone you are grateful for, then call and read it to them)
I practiced internal gratitude during the day=3 points
Two of the above=7 points
At least three of the above=10 points

Nutrition

How we physically fuel our body with the foods and substances we put in is a huge part of overall physical and mental health. Being aware of the way certain foods make you feel can allow you to improve overall mental health and functioning. Making the right decision for food is very apparent, choosing a healthy snack like almonds and fruit over candy and chips can have a direct influence on your functioning and health.

Nutrition scoring
5 servings of fruits or vegetables= 5 points
Minimized processed foods=3 points
Cooked my own meal=3 points
Intentionally made a healthy choice over an unhealthy choice (fruit over candy, etc.)=3 points
Used fish oil or other healthy supplements=5 points
Two of the above= 7 points
Three of the above=10 points

Hydration

Staying hydrated is something that people often overlook. This can lead to headaches, irritability, depression, and other physical and mental issues. Being aware of water in take is incredibly important. HYDRATE TO DOMINATE! (or at a concert, HYDRATE TO CELEBRATE!)

Hydration scoring
0-16oz of water= 0 points
16-31oz of water= 1 points
32-63oz of water= 3 points
64+oz of water=5 points

Supporting your Community

Being an engaged and positive member of your community is important. This does not have to elaborate, it can be as simple as supporting those around you. It is important to remember that where ever you live, it is up to you to make that a better place. “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”-Gandhi

Supporting your Community Scoring
Supported a local business= 3 points
Supported a community member=3 points
Practiced a random act of kindness=3 points
Volunteered, made a donation, or shared with others= 5 points
Other pro-community activity not listed=3 points
Picked up 3 pieces of litter=3 points
Two of the above=7 points
At least three of the above=10 points

Goal Setting

Participants are asked to set at least two goals when participating in the NRD. One quantitative and qualitative, click here to read more about goal setting and how to best set your own personal goals. Once you have read that article, here is an activity to help you set your own goals. Please complete this before starting the NRD. Making health decisions will often help reaching your goals and the NRD and your individuals goals will go hand-in-hand.

Goal Setting Scoring
I did something directly related to reaching my goal=3 points
I wrote in my goal journal or reflected on my goals=3 points
I pushed my boundaries and limits to strive for my goal=3 points
I reach a goal today!=10 points
I did something awesome today=5 points
Two of the above=7 points
Three of the above=10 points

Spirituality, Mindfulness, and Self Improvement

Being a spiritual person does not mean just going to church, spirituality is the connection with something bigger than you, self-introspection, and a search for greater meaning and fulfillment in life and self. Mindfulness is a way to have greater awareness of self and the world around you. This category is aimed to improve life satisfaction, and become a deeper person.

Spirituality, Mindfulness, and Self improvement scoring
Intentionally practicing mindfulness and self awareness=3 points
Went to counseling, consulted a doctor, or spiritual adviser=10 points
Mediated=5 points
Participated in a spiritually fulfilling activity=3 points
Spent two hours while awake away from screens=3 points
Spent at least 20 minutes in nature=3 points
Wrote in your journal=3 points
Yoga=5 points
Mood metering=3 points (This is a formal survey about how you feel at the present moment, formal test coming soon)
Two of the above=7 points
Three or four of the above (10 points)
Five or more of the above (15 points)

Sleep

Getting ample rest is extremely important. Not being rested weakens your immune system, reduces your mental health functioning, and generally does not allow us to operate at our best.

Sleep Scoring
4-5 hours=3 points
6-7 hours= 7 points
8+ hours= 10 points

Passions, Hobbies, Arts, and Brain Stimulation

Having interests like painting, writing, music, art, reading, games, and other brain stimulation is important to keeping the mind sharp. As people age this activation of the brain becomes even more important. Engaging the brain can be  helpful, fun, and fulfilling. Often people get hung up how talented they are at an art or hobby, this does not matter! Just accessing your creative side is important for mental health. The following is a list of activities included in this category, but note that other activities not listed may count as well if it stimulates the brain or encourages creativity.

*Writing *Listening/Creating to music
*Art (painting, drawing, etc.) *Puzzles or Board/Card/Other games that encourage thought
*Crafts *Reading a book
*Woodwork *Participate in a hobby
*Go to theater, concert, or show *See a speaker on an interesting topic
*Attend a class *Tried something new and different

Passions, Hobbies, Arts, and Brain Stimulation Scoring
I participated in a hobby or passion=3 points
Accessed my creative side (arts, crafts, writing, music, etc.)=3 points
Stimulated my brain (reading a book, puzzles, games, etc.)=3 points
Tried something new and different=3 points
Two of the above=7 points
Three of the above=10 points

Connecting with People

Social connection with the people around you is important for emotional and social health. Connecting with the people in your life, friends, family, colleagues, community members is a great way to grow as a person. Providing mutual support, encouragement, and advice is valuable to growth as an individual. Being kind to other people also is a sign of happy people.

Social Connecting Scoring
Was kind to the people around me=3 points
Practiced a random act of kindness=5 points
Genuinely told someone you loved them= 3 points
Had a quality conversation with a friend or family member=5 points
Was intimate with a person you love=5 points
Connected with a person you did not know=5 points
Two of the above=7 points
Three of the above=10 points

There are a maximum total of 100 points every day. Try to do as many of these activities as possible and see how you feel!