Simple Ways to Lead a Healthy Lifestyle
Nowadays, magazines, blogs, TV shows, and the Internet gurus are preaching about lifestyle improvement. It’s hardly a new thing, but recently, with overwork stress and the speeding up of our everyday lives, this talk has gained momentum. And there are so many pieces of advice from all of them, one simply can’t be sure where to start. While trying to be helpful, the amount of life coaching content is overwhelming. So, we’ll try to help you get your “feet wet” in this journey, and give some guidelines on where to go next.
Only recently have people started to accept what behavioralist theory has been teaching for a long time. It’s not the events in our lives that cause stress, it’s our response to it. As most blog psychology websites teach us the significance we decide to give things is bound to affect us. So, before you sign up for yoga, meditation, anger management classes and buy self-help book by the lot, look into this theory. Surprisingly enough, a lot of our stress can be eliminated at the source: the events in our life. We can’t control them, but we most certainly can control our response to them.
Some of you may already be doing this. But for the others who aren’t, we can stress enough how beneficial journaling is. There are two ways: journaling events, memories, feelings, and thoughts, or journaling activities. Journaling activities, you prepare for the week ahead – write to-do lists, weekly tasks, goals and achievements. It’s practical and frees up your mind for other, more important decisions. The other kind of journaling helps “cleanse” in a way. Writing down events and thoughts can give you a new perspective.
Yes, believe it or not, we’ve put cooking on this list as well. Why? While the process alone is very therapeutic, it’s also important to know where your ingredients are coming from. Instead of buying takeout or eating out once a day (even healthy foods), try to learn how to cook. An indispensable skill that will not only connect you better with your friends and family but cooking will also give you a new appreciation for food. You can also gauge portion sizes better, the amount of each ingredient in the meal, and customize it to your liking. Who knows, you may learn more about your own nutrition habits along the way.
Along with cooking, you should take close care of what you eat and when. Numerous lifestyle outlets will explain this point in more detail, but we want to emphasize the importance of having informed food choices while being careful not to go overboard. There are plenty of fad diets you should stay away from. A few proven healthy additions to your diets are vitamins, oils, protein powder, organic mass gainer and herbal supplements. Everything else should be researched in great detail before implementing it. Nowadays, the one thing we easily forget is to enjoy the food. Like all other essentials in our life, we should see it as a reward, not punishment.
A healthier lifestyle is also about nurturing your mental health. If you don’t have a hobby, try out a few of them until you find out what suits you. You can turn it into a fun little month-long project. It can be language learning (online or in a classroom), picking up an instrument, collecting certain things, gardening, and so on. And if you do have a hobby… what are you waiting for? Take it to the next level, or reignite the passion you’ve had for it and may have forgotten by now. Work and life often tend to stray us away from what we once loved to do just for ourselves, so our responsibilities don’t suffer. Which, in all honesty, is a mistake.
By now, we are all well aware that 6-8 hours of sleep is the optimal amount of resting time every night. However, we want to add a few details:
- Turn off your laptop/computer/tablet and leave your phone at least an hour before bed
- Crack open your windows to let fresh air inside for better sleep
- Chamomile tea is a natural relaxant before bed
- Don’t eat anything too heavy before bed, as your digestive system should be “resting”
To sum up
Without hiring a life coach, finding a support group, or simply a good place to start, improving the quality of your lifestyle is a big undertaking. However, it consists of a lot of small steps implemented – watching your sleep schedule, eating right, taking care of your mental health… As frighteningly long as the list can get, it’s good to remember that ultimately, all that time and money is invested in yourself. As they say: no one will care for you better than you yourself.