Even though it may seem difficult to focus on personal health and well-being in our fast-paced society, living a balanced and healthy life is certainly well within your reach! Making small, attainable changes to your daily habits can help you to achieve the well-being you yearn for, and more importantly, deserve. Making a pact to take care of yourself is one of the most beneficial things you can do for your mental and physical health. In fact, researchers describe life imbalance as being a contributor for:
- Mental disturbances
- High blood pressure
- Chronic stress
- Elevated hormone levels
- Chronic headaches
- Sleep issues
- Impaired immune system
While it may occasionally seem as though there is no way around these issues, there are ways to give yourself the attention you deserve—without taking away from family, friends, work and other important aspects of life. Curious about how you can improve the balance in your busy life and improve your health along the way? Let us help you!
Tip #1: Make sure to make “ME TIME” each day
This can be a 60 minute exercise class, a quiet morning coffee break, a brief walk around the neighborhood or just soaking up some sun during your lunch hour. It is important to take this time to appreciate yourself and how incredible your body and your mind truly are! Give yourself a few moments to reaffirm how grateful you are for what you’ve been given in life. Try saying “I appreciate what I do” or maybe, “I really am a hard worker” or “I am the best parent I can be to my beautiful children.” Whatever you tell yourself for, make sure it’s genuine. You deserve to be reminded of what makes you great!
Tip #2: Organize your priorities
With how hectic life can be, it is easy to lose track of time and to let tasks fall by the wayside. Create a daily list—either on paper, your computer, tablet or smartphone to plan out the day ahead. Include check boxes so that you can determine which items have been completed and which require more effort. It can be such a rewarding feeling to be able to check off items on a list once they’ve been completed and to end your day feeling accomplished. This can include not only work tasks, but even at-home chores, family obligations and even personal goals. This will also help to alleviate any stress that comes with trying to remember all the things you have planned for your busy day.
Tip #3: Expect and accept the setbacks
Life is never guaranteed to go 100% as planned and even the smallest of setbacks can become great stressors. Accepting that this is sometimes the case will help you to better adapt to surprises, both great and small. For example, let’s say that you have a family vacation planned and have really been looking forward to it for some time. At the last minute, your flight is cancelled due to poor weather conditions. While this can completely change your plans, try to envision the positive aspects of the situation. Maybe you are given a notable credit from the airlines for a future vacation. Perhaps this becomes a great opportunity for a ‘stay-cation’ and fun activities to try out in your city. Or maybe this just means that you get the opportunity to create a whole new adventure with your family. Even if it seems challenging to do, always try to seek out the positive nature in all things.
Tip #4: Speaking of adventure…
Spontaneity is not an easy feat, but when you allow yourself to find randomness in your life, it’s incredible how your spirits can really lift! Try to think of an activity or skill you’ve always been curious about. Maybe you’ve considered hiking the Appalachian Trail, or maybe you’ve been wanting to learn how to sword fight, or maybe knit, or rock climb. What about watching orca whales off the coast of Victoria? Maybe it’s a new language you’ve been curious about. Parlez–vous français? Regardless of what you find interest in, make sure you allow yourself an opportunity to seek it out and to fulfill your curiosity. You might just find something new to really excel at!
Tip #5: Allow joy
Always welcome the opportunity to smile. Whether it’s in knowing the love of a friend or spouse, the goofiness of a pet, or the beauty on the horizon, we all have things that warm our hearts and bring us joy. Don’t fight the urge to smile, to laugh, and to be grateful of these wonderful things. They are ultimately what we live for—what drives us to be human and whole. And if you feel you cannot find enough joy to fill your life, try seeking out new joys. Altruism through giving to others, whether volunteering time or energy, is one way to not only give joy to yourself, but also to others who too seek true happiness. Sunshine and fresh air are also especially effective for increasing those feel-good moments. Remember to breathe in the positivity in what’s around you and to breathe out the negative. What a difference this can really make on our stress levels and overall feelings of relaxation! Speaking of improving stress levels—exercise and healthy eating have a positive physiological effect on the body by improving hormones (did someone say endorphins??), energy, sleep patterns and more! And laughter…well who doesn’t enjoy a little laughter every now and then? Allow yourself to laugh out loud wherever possible.
Did we miss anything? Of course we did! Balance comes in so many shapes and sizes and that’s what makes us all uniquely special. Find your unique balance in life and always allow yourself the pleasure of knowing you are a healthier person for it!