“Take care of the body. It is the only place you have to live” –Jim Rohn
In a modern world that encourages its inhabitants to live a sedentary lifestyle (escalators instead of stair, walkators instead of ordinary pavements, etc.) and wherein everything is conveniently prepared fast such as the food thus the name “fast food”, we might all find ourselves living a lifestyle where we would meet our end…fast. Well, if this is a thought that daunts you then perhaps it is the best wakeup sign that you need to lead a healthier lifestyle. But of course, do not let it stop at contemplation, decide on it and make a conscious effort to commit to it as well.
A healthier lifestyle is within your reach and you can even start today. But before anything else, make sure that this is a lifetime commitment and not just a temporary fad. Here are ten of the steps you can undertake to ensure a healthier lifestyle.
1.) Assess and take stock
Before committing to anything else, your initial step towards healthy living is to gauge your health status at the moment. To do this, you would need to make appointments with your doctors and dentists. Measure your height and weight and while you are at that, check your body mass index and see if your weight is normal. Additionally, you should take a look at your daily activities and see if they contribute to your overall well-being and health. Lastly, you would need to keep a feed diary which you would note down everything that you have eaten for a day.
2.) Have existing ailments treated
If you are aware of chronic illnesses and health problems such as common heart diseases, diabetes, arthritis, hypertension and depression or other conditions, it is imperative that this should be treated if you want to live healthily. Additionally, unsavory habits such as smoking or drinking should be stopped or at least curbed until fully eliminated.
3.) Have a physical activity
Increase your physical activity and to make sure you stay committed to it until the end, ensure that it is something you enjoy. Go for a hike or a walk with friends or take karate classes with them. If sports is more of your thing, try it and look for a flexible time wherein you can incorporate it into your everyday routine. Lastly, you should keep track of it. Note it down in a journal how intense your activity was and if you up for it, record your weight as well. Of course, it is important to set goals too so that you would stay committed.
4.) Overhaul your diet
Without a doubt, processed foods and fast foods should be eliminated from your everyday diet. It may be hard, but opting to eat more fruits and vegetables can be very rewarding. Plan your meals well and do not simply go about your day without knowing what meals you will be having. This is imperative as it helps you gauge the kind of food you will be ingesting. Lastly, slow down and savor your food. Do not multitask, enjoy every bite and flavor it has.
5.) Manage your stress
Everyone has a unique reaction to stress and how to cope with it. However, when you are inundated with too much of it, it can be detrimental to your mental health and overall well-being. So, know how to gauge and handle it by developing positive coping skills such as visualization and meditation. Learn how to take a few deep breaths and focus instead on letting the stress consume you. Yoga is also very helpful in managing and cure stress.
6.) Have better sleep
Sleep contributes to your health as well. If you find that you are having trouble with sleeping, go without TV or computer of even phone browsing two hours before your designated bedtime. This will effectively lessen stimuli which would allow you to sleep better. Heavy exercise before bedtime should be avoided as well, light stretching is fine but vigorous activities should be avoided. Lastly, take a hot bath as this will help you get to sleep by relaxing you mentally.
7.) Improve your relationships
Healthy living does not stop at your personal habits and what you do with your body. Your personal connections with other people contribute to it as well. Build your social sphere, look for people who have a similarity to you and whose company you truly enjoy. Spend time with them as well and get to know them. Grow your relationship with them and you will see just how much happier you will be.
8.) Continuously challenge your mind
Find activities that stimulate the mind—this is especially good if they involve other people. Engaging in this kind of activity gives your mind a workout as well which would greatly reduce your risk for dementia. It also encourages you to think deeply and find creative solutions to issues.
9.) Feel Comfortable with Yourself
Critical to having a healthy lifestyle is to feel comfortable with the body you have and what you have become. Do not let others opinion influence how you see yourself. Instead, allow yourself to be the only person who can dictate how you look like. If you are not comfortable with how you look, then work on changing the things you know you can improve on.
10.) Enjoy life – Have fun
Life is too short to be constantly worried about things that could have been. Live your life fully and have as much fun as you can. See as much as you can of the world, go out with friends, make new friendships and as much as possible meet new people. If ever something has pained you in the past, try not to think about it and move on. Do not spend your entire life crying about what has already happened or you may be placing yourself in a precarious position wherein you could develop depression. Cut out the negative people in your live and cherish the ones that support and love you just for who you are.