(8 minute Read)
If you read my blog – Busily Addicted I talked about the importance of supporting the fundamentals of good health and wellbeing. Improving the quality of your sleep; nourishing yourself with healthy, wholefood nutrition; keeping exercise easy; and the importance of rest. The foundation of a strong and healthy immune system also begins with the same fundamentals.
I know these things are often easier said than done, and many people don’t know where to start.
So here are some quick tips to help!
Minimum 8 hours!
It’s when our immune systems go to work giving our body time to physically recover and repair. Sleep is as imperative to our mental wellbeing, as it is to help restore our energy levels each day.
If you feel tired our sluggish when you wake up, you’re probably not getting enough and the quality of your sleep is probably poor.
Prepare for sleep so you can ensure you get the best rest possible:
Avoid alcohol in the evening; eat a smaller lighter meal at dinner; turn off all the electronics and screens; avoid bright lights; turn your phone to silent and engage flight mode.
Stretch! It helps calm the nervous system and supports getting to sleep. Take 10 minutes. Pick two stretches e.g. if your lower back is sore and stiff, or your neck and shoulders are tight do stretches to focus those areas.
After you’ve stretched, sit quietly and focus on your breath for 10 minutes. Call it meditation if you like; it doesn’t need to be anything more than sitting quietly to begin.
Healthy nutritional choices fuel our energy and provide the raw materials for the body to support itself. Poor or unhealthy nutritional choices however can lead to increased acidity, digestive issues, mental fogginess, and weight gain!
Getting organised and sticking to a plan is the first step to supporting healthier nutrition, and then it’s just giving yourself time to actually eat…
Consider these tips:
Don’t skip meals! Get organised on the weekends with your groceries and make a plan for the week ahead of what you’re going to eat and prepare meals in advanced.
Be mindful of portion sizes, eat slowly and chew your food to avoid over eating. Reduce the distractions when eating so you’re more aware of what and how much you’re eating.
Have healthy snacks like nuts, fruit or pre-cut vegetable sticks to keep your blood sugar levels up between meals, and avoid getting so hungry you then over eat! Avoid coffee or sweets to get your through the afternoon.
Exercise supports our physical body in many different ways, but it is super important for keeping our mental wellbeing in balance too. We know its benefits and yet so many of us struggle to maintain regular ongoing exercise in our lives. The common barriers I hear people have to exercise include low energy, don’t know what to do, don’t know how to start, boredom, and there’s no point in doing something by halves.
Exercise should be fun and foster energy; it should not be a struggle and deplete us!
Change happens by first taking small incremental steps to build habit; then practise and perseverance creates a lifestyle!
Dial back the intensity and give yourself permission to do less. Walking is easy and one of the best exercises you can do for both your physical and mental wellbeing! If you’re ready for something more intense like a run, swim or cycle for example keep your sessions lighter and shorter to begin, focus on technique. Keep it fun!
Get out of the gym and into the sunshine and fresh air you’ll be amazed at what a difference it makes! Take time to stretch and enjoy your surroundings!
Try to include activity into your day. Take the stairs, walk to that meeting, in fact have that meeting while you walk!!
…and of course exercise is always better with a friend!
We have the ability to be switched on and plugged in 24/7. Often the first thing we look at on waking is our phones; and they’re usually the last things we look at before going to sleep! In between, screens and technology invade our every waking moment.
Time away from all that keeps us busy gives us space to and the necessary perspective to keep everything in balance and our priorities clear.
The week is busy, the weekend is often busier! Avoid work on the weekend and allow yourself some space to potter with no plan; spend time with loved ones that doesn’t involve a screen or technology; indulge yourself in a hobby.
Daydream and allow your mind to wander. The best ideas, solutions, and creative inspiration happen in this space. Unplug for 10 minutes each day and just stare at the sky, walk in a garden, or find a quite spot and enjoy the warmth of the sun.
Get out into nature, breathe the fresh air, feel the sun, touch the earth, and see the expanse of the sky. There is something very grounding about immersing yourself in nature that helps to clear the mind, and expand our energy.
Just for a moment…..STOP! Breathe slowly….. FEEL!
What do you need in this moment to SUPPORT your wellbeing?