By: Shivani Shete
It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life. With a million things on your mind, you can lose track of personal goals and what you want for yourself. Taking time to incorporate some easy, healthy habits will help you feel motivated and improve your overall quality of living.
If you’re sitting down, lying in bed, or lounging on your couch right now… stand up and take control of what you want to accomplish. Here are 8 simple lifestyle changes that will boost your health and wellbeing.
1. Plan your meals in advance
Meal planning has so many pros. It saves time, you avoid the stress that comes with cooking at the very last minute, you don’t impulsively buy the food you’re craving, and you can be creative and eat a variety of healthy options. It can also help you manage your portions and ensure that overeating doesn’t happen. Dedicating each Sunday, let’s say, to put together meals for the entire week is the way to go. You’ll stay organized while knowing that you’re getting just the right amount of nutrients in your diet.
2. Go outside and get some fresh air
Yes, the cliche “go get some fresh air!” But… It's true. Going outside relieves stress, improves your focus, and keeps you active. Even if you’re only able to step out for a small amount of time, that time makes a difference. Instead of gluing your eyes to your device, go for a long walk or bike to the nearby park. Make a trip to the farmer’s market or hike at the forest preserve. Whatever it is, be present and take in nature’s beauty. It’s worth it.
3. Build positive relationships with the people around you
Surrounding yourself with people who lift you up and push you to become the best version of yourself is valuable. Taking time to strengthen those relationships and really connect with the people you love will keep you smiling. It’s happiness all around. They are there for you, and you are there for them. They teach you lessons, while you teach them too. You’ll have a solid support system of individuals who care about having you in their lives.
4. Put on a cute outfit
Clothes are powerful. What you have on says a lot about how you want to treat your day. Dressing well will not only heighten your confidence, but make you feel better about yourself and everything you approach. It impacts the way you think and is great for you mentally. There’s psychology behind fashion. So, if you just aren’t feeling it right now, go put on something fashionable! Cough cough… some cute Playground Active pieces. 😊
5. Have your water bottle around you at all times
There are an infinite number of reasons for why staying hydrated is so good for you. Increasing your energy, cleansing your body, strengthening your muscles and joints, improving your sleep… It keeps going. It’s recommended that women drink about 11.5 cups of water a day, while men drink 15.5 cups. Make it habitual to carry your water bottle wherever you go. No excuses!
6. Self-care routine
Above anything, you come first. Where you’re at mentally and physically is crucial. You don’t have to go to great lengths to develop an intricate routine. Things as simple as journaling your thoughts right before bed or taking a warm bubble bath will make you feel better. There’s never NOT time for “me time”, and it’s okay to be a little selfish when it comes to focusing on you.
7. Set social media limits
Social media is a huge part of life today. It’s become a reality for people to pick their phones up and get absorbed in the world of endless scrolling whenever there’s free time. It can be fun, but also exhausting. Rather than always being social online, be social in real life. Interact with others and keep your phone away while you’re at it. Staying strict with how much time you spend on certain apps will help clear your mind and reduce the added pressures that come with the web.
8. Reflect and track your mood
At the end of a long day, recognizing where your emotions are at will allow you to be more informed. You’ll be able to manage how you’re feeling faster and work on becoming happy and content. Downloading mood tracking apps or writing in a mood/gratitude journal routinely are ways to keep track of your mental health and overcome the negative moods that weigh you down.
Bettering your life is all about putting your mind to it and, of course, going through with it. This doesn’t mean completely changing your life in one night, but doing small, easy things that will pay off in the long run. Trust me, you’ll thank yourself later.