In the high stress, fast paced world that we live in with busy families and obligations to our jobs and communities, we may neglect to meet the basics of self-care. How do you stay healthy, or even regain your health, and keep illness at bay? Making time to become a healthier and create wellness is easier than you think.
The body needs five basic things for optimal health: oxygen, movement, water, food, & rest. Try to incorporate the steps below into your normal day. Start with one or two small changes and add more as you feel comfortable. Most importantly – be consistent and as these changes become part of your everyday routine, your body will reap the benefits.
- In the morning, before you even get out of bed, take a couple of slow, deep breaths. Maybe even practice gratitude for the fact that you can take those deep breaths for another day. Time commitment: 30 seconds.
- Get outside. Fresh air and sunlight help clear the mind and improve mood. Sun exposure is also a good source for Vitamin D, which is necessary for multiple functions of the body. Time commitment: 15 minutes.
- Stretch your body. Nothing elaborate, just move. Reach for the ceiling, spread eagle across the bed, any movement that will remind your body that the day has begun. Time commitment: 30 seconds-1 minute.
- Set an alarm to go off every 1-2 hours during the day. When it goes off, take a few more slow deep breaths, then get up and move. Walk down the hall, stretch, do a few wall push-ups, walk up and down a flight of stairs. Do anything just to get your blood flowing. Time commitment: 5+ minutes.
- Pay attention to your posture. Good posture makes it easier for deep breathing, deep breathing increases oxygen in the cells, and increased oxygen in the cells delivers increased energy to the body. Time commitment: 5 seconds.
- Drink a large glass of water immediately after getting up. This wakes up the digestive tract, hydrates cells, and helps flush toxins out of the body. Continue drinking water throughout the day and notice how your energy improves. Time commitment: 30 seconds.
- Increase your vegetable and fruit intake. Snack on carrots, snap peas, hummus, and apples. Add a salad full of veggies to your lunch and dinner. Plan ahead and pre-pack items the night before, so they are available at work or on the run. Time commitment: 15 minutes (plus shopping)
- Make sleep a priority. Be in bed early enough to get 7-8 hours of rest. While you sleep your body cleanses and heals itself. It is critical for cell growth and repair, brain function, and overall health. Time commitment: 7-8 hours.
Ready? Get set…. GO!