Self-care is so important for staying physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy. Unfortunately, far too many of us are reluctant to practice self-care because we are worried it is selfish. In fact, self-care will help to refresh and re-energize you so that you are able to be the best version of yourself, which can only be a positive thing for those around you. After all, we don't think it's selfish to take care of our car to make sure it runs properly, so why should we feel selfish about taking care of our own needs. There are many ways to practice self-care, and the benefits can be absolutely invaluable.
In this article, we will discuss how you can implement self-care practices into your life.
Environmental Self Care
The first important self-care step you can take is to create an environment that is conducive to feeling good. We spend more time in our homes than anywhere else and making sure that your home is comfortable as well as functional is really important for creating a space to relax and rejuvenate. The disorder is very contagious, and an untidy or cluttered home can easily affect your mental and emotional state. Pay careful attention to the interior design and layout of your home and set a cleaning schedule to make sure your home remains a pleasant place to live. Cleaning can be very therapeutic, and especially if you stay on top of it does not take a lot of time. The cleaning experts at www.clean4happy.com/ told us that there is a lot of cleaning equipment available, which makes cleaning your home easy. With our busy lives, it can be easy to fall behind on the cleaning schedule, but coming home to a messy house can cause a lot of negative feelings and anxiety. Make cleaning and organizing your home part of your self-care practice, and you will always have your own little haven to go back to.
Physical Self Care
Personal self-care is essential to make sure that you are feeling your absolute best. First of all, it is important to take care of your physical needs. Just as a car needs the correct fuel, your body needs food, and its quality plays a massive role in your physical health and wellness. A poor diet is one of the major causes of preventable diseases and with the enormous rise in the levels of global obesity, diseases like diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, and kidney disease have become all too common, as have other issues like high blood pressure, an increased risk of strokes and heart attacks as well as depression and other mental health issues linked to poor physical health. As well as problems relating to a poor diet, unhealthy habits like smoking and drinking excessive amounts of alcohol also have serious negative consequences on your physical health.
Smoking causes a number of different cancers, as well as various diseases linked to your breathing and circulation. Alcohol causes serious damage to many of your important organs, high blood pressure, depression, and an unstable mood. Physical self-care is all about making the right lifestyle choices to make sure that our bodies are functioning to their maximum potential. Eating a clean diet, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and doing regular exercise are all important physical self-care steps to take.
Mental and Emotional Self Care
Our mental and emotional well-being is important, and there are various methods for maintaining a positive mind and mood. Making sure that you spend enough quality time with your friends and family is one of the best ways to keep your mind healthy and your emotions positive. Depression, stress, and anxiety are very common problems these days, so mental and emotional self-care is vital. It is important to allow yourself time for your hobbies and interests as well as time to simply relax. Being outside in nature has many benefits for your mental and emotional health, plus the vitamin D that you get from sunlight will help you improve your mood, and to maintain a strong immune system. Far too many people overlook the importance of mental and emotional self-care, but it is absolutely vital for living a healthy, happy life.
Self-care is hugely important for maintaining a fit and healthy body, a happy mood, and a healthy mind. Modern life is so busy that it often seems like there just isn't enough time to look after ourselves properly. If self-care is overlooked, however, it can cause serious short and long term problems. If you neglect your self-care, follow the advice in this article, and you will experience some real benefits.
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With a lack of certainty surrounding the future, being and feeling healthy may help bring the security that you need during these unpredictable times.
When it comes to your health, there is a direct relationship between nutrition and physical activity that play an enormous part in physical, mental, and social well-being. As COVID-19 continues to impact almost every aspect of our lives, the uncertainty of the future may seem looming. Sometimes improvisation is necessary, and understanding how to stay healthy and fit can significantly help you manage your well-being during these times.
Tip 1: Communicate with your current wellness providers and set a plan
Gyms, group fitness studios, trainers, and professionals can help you to lay out a plan that will either keep you on track through all of the changes and restrictions or help you to get back on the ball so that all of your health objectives are met.
Most facilities and providers are setting plans to provide for their clients and customers to accommodate the unpredictable future. The key to remaining consistent is to have solid plans in place. This means setting a plan A, plan B, and perhaps even a plan C. An enormous amount is on the table for this coming fall and winter; if your gym closes again, what is your plan? If outdoor exercising is not an option due to the weather, what is your plan? Leaving things to chance will significantly increase your chances of falling off of your regimen and will make consistency a big problem.
The key to remaining consistent is to have solid plans in place. This means setting a plan A, plan B, and perhaps even a plan C.
Tip 2: Stay active for both mental and physical health benefits
The rise of stress and anxiety as a result of the uncertainty around COVID-19 has affected everyone in some way. Staying active by exercising helps alleviate stress by releasing chemicals like serotonin and endorphins in your brain. In turn, these released chemicals can help improve your mood and even reduce risk of depression and cognitive decline. Additionally, physical activity can help boost your immune system and provide long term health benefits.
With the new work-from-home norm, it can be easy to bypass how much time you are spending sedentary. Be aware of your sitting time and balance it with activity. Struggling to find ways to stay active? Start simple with activities like going for a walk outside, doing a few reps in exchange for extra Netflix time, or even setting an alarm to move during your workday.
Tip 3: Start slow and strong
If you, like many others during the pandemic shift, have taken some time off of your normal fitness routine, don't push yourself to dive in head first, as this may lead to burnout, injury, and soreness. Plan to start at 50 percent of the volume and intensity of prior workouts when you return to the gym. Inactivity eats away at muscle mass, so rather than focusing on cardio, head to the weights or resistance bands and work on rebuilding your strength.
Be aware of your sitting time and balance it with activity.
Tip 4: If your gym is open, prepare to sanitize
In a study published earlier this year, researchers found drug-resistant bacteria, the flu virus, and other pathogens on about 25 percent of the surfaces they tested in multiple athletic training facilities. Even with heightened gym cleaning procedures in place for many facilities, if you are returning to the gym, ensuring that you disinfect any surfaces before and after using them is key.
When spraying disinfectant, wait a few minutes to kill the germs before wiping down the equipment. Also, don't forget to wash your hands frequently. In an enclosed space where many people are breathing heavier than usual, this can allow for a possible increase in virus droplets, so make sure to wear a mask and practice social distancing. Staying in the know and preparing for new gym policies will make it easy to return to these types of facilities as protocols and mutual respect can be agreed upon.
Tip 5: Have a good routine that extends outside of just your fitness
From work to working out, many routines have faltered during the COVID pandemic. If getting back into the routine seems daunting, investing in a new exercise machine, trainer, or small gadget can help to motivate you. Whether it's a larger investment such as a Peloton, a smaller device such as a Fitbit, or simply a great trainer, something new and fresh is always a great stimulus and motivator.
Make sure that when you do wake up well-rested, you are getting out of your pajamas and starting your day with a morning routine.
Just because you are working from home with a computer available 24/7 doesn't mean you have to sacrifice your entire day to work. Setting work hours, just as you would in the office, can help you to stay focused and productive.
A good night's sleep is also integral to obtaining and maintaining a healthy and effective routine. Adults need seven or more hours of sleep per night for their best health and wellbeing, so prioritizing your sleep schedule can drastically improve your day and is an important factor to staying healthy. Make sure that when you do wake up well-rested, you are getting out of your pajamas and starting your day with a morning routine. This can help the rest of your day feel normal while the uncertainty of working from home continues.
Tip 6: Focus on food and nutrition
In addition to having a well-rounded daily routine, eating at scheduled times throughout the day can help decrease poor food choices and unhealthy cravings. Understanding the nutrients that your body needs to stay healthy can help you stay more alert, but they do vary from person to person. If you are unsure of your suggested nutritional intake, check out a nutrition calculator.
If you are someone that prefers smaller meals and more snacks throughout the day, make sure you have plenty of healthy options, like fruits, vegetables and lean proteins available (an apple a day keeps the hospital away). While you may spend most of your time from home, meal prepping and planning can make your day flow easier without having to take a break to make an entire meal in the middle of your work day. Most importantly, stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
Tip 7: Don't forget about your mental health
While focusing on daily habits and routines to improve your physical health is important, it is also a great time to turn inward and check in with yourself. Perhaps your anxiety has increased and it's impacting your work or day-to-day life. Determining the cause and taking proactive steps toward mitigating these occurrences are important.
For example, with the increase in handwashing, this can also be a great time to practice mini meditation sessions by focusing on taking deep breaths. This can reduce anxiety and even lower your blood pressure. Keeping a journal and writing out your daily thoughts or worries can also help manage stress during unpredictable times, too.
While the future of COVI9-19 and our lives may be unpredictable, you can manage your personal uncertainties by focusing on improving the lifestyle factors you can control—from staying active to having a routine and focusing on your mental health—to make sure that you emerge from this pandemic as your same old self or maybe even better.