4 Simple Habits for a Healthier You
Practicing an attitude of gratitude leads to better health.
With the New Year comes feelings of excitement, hope, and wonder. People are making resolutions and setting goals for things they want to accomplish in the next 12 months. Many look at it as a fresh start or a chance to “reset”. This exciting time of new opportunities and possibilities for the new year also brings about expectations. Unfortunately, as we have all experienced in our lives, if expectations aren’t met we get discouraged and feel a “letdown.” Those feelings can become crippling and lead us to negative places. This year, I say let go of resolutions and let go of expectations. Throw expectations out the window. Good or bad, don’t attach a desired outcome to the next 12 months. Don’t try to predict the end result of an action. This doesn’t mean you can’t make plans or have aspirations for the future; it just means that you allow yourself to accept each day for what it is. Instead of making resolutions, try incorporating new habits into your life; Habits that will help you achieve your goals.
For example, I challenge you to try incorporating some simple habits into your daily routine and see how things start to change, physically, emotionally, and spiritually in your life. Set aside time each day and practice these 4 simple things:
1. Practice gratitude– Appreciating the blessings in your life, set aside time each day to recognize and write down everything you are grateful for. There will be days this will seem harder to do; Day’s you feel like the universe is against you. But, focusing on blessings will redirect your mind and help you see that each day is a gift made up of all the small things and all the big things. This is your list, and nothing is trivial. It can be anything from cozy blankets and the warmth of the sun on your skin to being able to pay your bills and having a roof over your head. I like to do this in the morning to start off the day with a grateful mindset, but you can do this anytime throughout the day that fits your schedule. Just don’t skip a day, especially if you’re having a bad one.
2. Meditate– Set aside time each day to allow your mind to rest and focus your attention on a thought or intention for that day. How much time you devote to this is up to you. Allow the stress of the day to melt away with every exhale. Rest in the stillness as you connect with yourself, your emotions, and your thoughts. Take time to appreciate your mind, body, and soul, giving grace and thankfulness for each breath that fills your lungs. Create a space without distractions. This practice will benefit you in several ways. There is overwhelming proof that meditation:
• Helps calm the nerves
• Encourages better breathing
• Improves brain power
• Soothes pain
• Promotes a better quality of sleep
• Helps with focus and concentration
• Maintains mental and emotional health
Palo santo sticks can be used to clear negative energy in your space.
3. Stretching– We all know that stretching before exercise is important, but many people don’t realize that stretching every day regardless of physical activity is important as well, especially as we get older. Some of the great benefits of stretching are:
• Improved Posture
• Improved range of motion and prevention of loss of range of motion
• Increased blood flow to muscles
• Decreased body pain and prevention of muscle soreness
• It helps to prevent injuries
• It decreased stress
• It calms your mind
Extended wide Squat Pose will open tight hips and relieve lower back tension.
Wheels can release tension in sore muscles throughout the body and help as a massager.
4. Hydrate- Up your water intake. I have tried to do the gallon challenge, which is drinking a gallon of water each day. It’s very tough to do and it may make you feel like all you’re doing is drinking and peeing. If you think you are up for the challenge, I say go for it. But, you don’t need a gallon a day to reap the benefits of hydrating your body; Simply drink more water. Keep water with you at all times and drink throughout the day. Drinking plenty of water and staying hydrated has many benefits. Water is a natural detoxifying agent. The more water you drink, the purer your blood will be. Water aids in flushing out toxins from the body and helps the organs to function properly. And as a bonus, your skin will look and feel healthier.
Every cell, tissue, and organ in your body needs water to work properly
As you incorporate these simple habits into your daily routine, you will start to see a shift in your life. You will begin to let go of negative thoughts and perceptions and start to attract a healthier mindset that will attract more positive people and things. You will start to feel more joy and will attract more abundance in your life. You will start to feel healthier from the inside and will have more energy for the rest of your daily responsibilities.
“Congratulations! Today is your day. You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away! You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.” – Dr. Seuss
” Depending on what they are, our habits will either make us or break us. We become what we repeatedly do. “
Photo and creative credits to Jasmine Margreno, owner of Vibrant Life Yoga. For more information on her practice and the benefits of yoga, Visit her website.