In our fast-paced modern society, sometimes it can be difficult to find the time to establish healthy routines and habits. The demands of the workplace and needs of the family can often lead to one’s own wellness being placed on the back burner, despite its paramount importance.
If you frequently find yourself experiencing high levels of emotional stress, fatigue, and physical discomfort, you are not alone. Letting these things continue unchecked will only lead down a path of poor health and lack of inner peace. When there are so many simple and fun ways to prevent your own suffering, there’s no excuse not to branch out and give some of them a try. The longer you go without addressing your complaints, the louder your complaining will be!
Even if you are one of the lucky or dedicated ones who feel great already, there is always room for improvement. A new idea for your already-established health regimen can keep you motivated and interested. When a routine becomes just a routine, it can be less mentally stimulating than it was when you started it.
A healthy soul is every bit as important as a healthy body, so care must be taken to nurture both aspects of one-self. Here are some ways to increase your overall mental and physical wellbeing, as well as some tips on how to fit them into your busy schedule.
You can begin improving your health in just 14 days:
Begin a short morning and/or evening yoga routine. Even just 15-20 minutes of gentle stretches, deep relaxation, and breathing exercises can drastically improve the way you feel. Even after just one yoga workout, you will notice relief of joint pain and a heightened sense of tranquillity. Yoga tones the muscles and increases circulation. The results are immediate and will become greater with time.
You can go at your own pace and begin at the level you are at, with no need to push yourself. If you already practice yoga, take it a step further. Introduce a new challenging pose, go outside for your routine and soak up the energy of the sun, try partner yoga as a way to bond with a loved one, or try a recorded practice developed by a different instructor than you are used to.
Drink herbal tea. There are many varieties readily available that can help you to relax, improve an existing health condition, or provide you with a refreshing energy boost. The warmth of the tea combined with the properties of your chosen herb can provide exactly what you need. Some have simultaneous physical and emotional effects.
Chamomile has long been used for relaxation of the mind and of the digestive system. Settle down at night or revitalize in the morning with a hot cup of tea of your choice. For an extra boost, try sweetening your tea with a spoonful of royal jelly. It may stimulate growth of neural brain cells.
Take a walk in the woods. If you live in the city, take a trip to a nature trail, large park, or wildlife area nearby. Getting away from the noise and pollution of city life, not to mention the stress and high energy, can give you a chance to catch your breath.
Regular immersion in nature is vital to the human experience, even if you can only find short times to do so. Admiring the trees, reflecting on the vastness of the sky, contemplating the flight of a butterfly- these things will intoxicate your spirit and improve your mood. Also, the walk itself is great for your physical health. Better for the joints than jogging, walking is an excellent way to get in a little exercise here and there. Try to clear your mind while you are out walking. Focus on your breathing and your surroundings. Let it be an opportunity to take a break from the stress of everyday life.
Try a raw food diet for a day. If you like it, make it a regular thing. Studies show that consuming raw foods can boost your energy and cleanse your system. Many common illnesses and discomforts can be alleviated by consuming the living energy in raw foods as they are full of antioxidants and nutrients. There are even success stories from people who have battled back cancer by switching to a completely raw diet.
You may not have even realized how many of the things you eat are fried, baked, microwaved, or otherwise cooked until you make a conscious effort to eat differently. Much of the nutritional value of food is sacrificed in the cooking process. Make a delicious smoothie with your favorite fruits, eat more salads, or even try some sprouts. You might be surprised at how many different ways you can prepare raw fruit and vegetable meals, and even more surprised at how great you feel after eating them.
Get your heart pumping. Heart disease is a number one health problem for adults. Cardio exercise is a great way to improve your overall health, and there are countless ways to do it that can fit right into your busy schedule – running up and down the stairs of your office building instead of taking a cigarette break, jumping rope or playing tag with your kids, jogging around your neighborhood while you take your dog out, running through a cardio circuit at your local gym on your lunch break, or taking a bike ride through a hilly part of town after school. Find something you enjoy and turn it into a chance to raise your pulse. Already regularly practice a cardio routine? Change it up. It might work out different parts of your body, and a change in routine can be very nurturing.
Add some food grade diatomaceous earth to a drink or meal – like one of the smoothies in your new raw food routine. Readily available in most health food stores, diatomaceous earth is fossilized algae composed mostly of silica. Consuming it is an incredibly simple and cost-effective way to cleanse your body of toxins, heavy metals, and even parasites. It does not dissolve completely, but stays microscopically granulated as it passes through your blood vessels and intestines, cleansing them of fatty buildup as it passes through. It lowers blood pressure and cholesterol. Its mineral content improves the health of the hair, skin, and nails. Many people report relief of joint pain and other physical complaints with regular consumption.
Dance! Put on a favorite record, or stream a station of your favorite genre of music and just dance. Find a partner if you like, or close the bedroom door and make it a part of your alone time. It may feel silly, but it is an amazing trick for making yourself feels good. Let go of the physical tension in your body as well as the stress in your mind. Forget about the meal you are supposed to cook for your family and the important deadline at work and lose yourself for a few moments in the act of moving freely to the rhythms of a favorite song. It will loosen and strengthen your joints and muscles, exercise your heart, and provide your soul with joyful stimulation. If you really start liking this dancing thing, sign up for a class or go to a concert and dance your heart out with a group of people. You might find it very uplifting.
Eat something as spicy as you can handle. Eating spicy foods can improve your heart health by reducing the damage of bad cholesterol and increasing your blood flow. It fights inflammation and may even cause you to burn extra calories in the 20 minutes following your meal. If you can’t quite bring yourself to eat something that will burn your tongue, try taking cayenne pepper capsules as a dietary supplement. You can experience the benefits without the burn.
Get a massage. Ask a partner to do the honors, or hire a professional if your budget allows. It will deeply relax you as well as prove beneficial for soreness of muscles and joints. Massaging specific areas of the body can also be associated with improving conditions of certain organs and internal systems of the body. Even self-massaging can be a great addition to your health regimen.
Try fluoride-free toothpaste. There are many alternatives, such as neem oil toothpaste that has been used for centuries in India. Fluoride is in much of the water we drink, food that we eat, and products that we use. If the levels of fluoride become too high in your body, it can be toxic and have many adverse health effects. Find out if you may be at risk for high fluoride levels.
Indulge in aromatherapy. If something as simple as a pleasant aroma can change the way you think and feel, there is no reason not to give it a try. One of the best things about aromatherapy is that you can reap the benefits while completing other tasks on your likely long to-do list. There are many ultrasonic diffusers available for a decent price, which often serve as ionizers and humidifiers as well, or you could use a simple reed diffuser. Simply add some essential oil of your choice, breathe deeply, and go about your day. Different scents can serve to relax you, give you energy, stimulate creativity, or soothe physical ailments. You can do aromatherapy while you take a bath after a long day, as you go through your morning ritual with your kids, or even as you work in your office.
Drive away from the drive-thru. As convenient as it may be, fast food may just be one of the leading causes of obesity and poor health in developed countries. If you find yourself eating the not-so-nutritious fare regularly, you may benefit from a change. If time is the issue, try getting up ten minutes earlier in the morning and pack yourself a healthy lunch and snacks. If it’s the kids demanding a quick meal that comes with a toy, try coming up with a more playful way for them to eat a healthy meal at home. Take them to the playground at the park instead of the one in your local fast food joint.
Go swimming. Whether it’s in a nearby lake or at your community swimming pool, activity in the water is some of the best exercise you can get. You can get your heart pumping and muscles working without any strain on the joints. The water provides ease of movement and increased resistance to make working out easy and enjoyable. Spending time in the water relieves the effects that gravity can have on the body. You can swim fast laps for cardio, float peacefully on your back as a relaxation technique, or join a class for arthritis relief or joint health exercise. It’s a great way to get the whole family to exercise while also spending time together bonding and creating lasting memories. If you choose to swim in a lake, river, or other natural body of water, your exercise can double as time spent reveling in nature, an integral part of a healthy lifestyle.
Take a long, hard look at your regular health practices and daily habits. Are there particular areas of concern that you have? Is there something that isn’t bothering you yet but that you feel may become an issue if you look the other way for too long? Prevention is always easier than treating an already-existing problem. Assess your current and future needs. Research your family history and find out if there is something about which you should be particularly concerned. If there is, find out ways you can reduce your risk. If you find that you become sick during a particular time of year, increase your intake of antioxidants before it comes around next time. Take proactive control of your own wellbeing.