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Giving Up My Ways

I wanted to share with you five ways in which I try to implement a healthy lifestyle. I don’t mean just by eating healthily or to workout. These things are a given for any healthy lifestyle, but I wanted to cover the other things that I find help me stay well when I am feeling or not feeling my best.

So, here they are:

One: Giving Up Bad Habits
Implementing a healthy lifestyle is to give up your bad habits so that you can make way for good ones. We all know what our bad habits. We have habits or things that we do in our life that doesn’t make us feel good. Some of it you are aware of and others you may not have a clue of it. However, you know very well that some things in your life don’t make you feel well or hold you back. Whether that’s a person, a job, your diet, not working out, debt, not getting enough sleep are all things that you don’t want to be incorporated into your life.

You can write all the things that you want to let go of so you can create space for those new habits. An example could be if you go to bed too late, maybe set the alarm to go to bed earlier. The goal is to take something negative and create a positive habit out of it.

It is suggested that it takes 21 days to create a habit, so if you are starting a newer practice, make sure that you’re keeping track. You can use a marker and with each day you that achieve it. You mark it. If you don’t, you start again. Eventually, that new habit will be ingrained into your mind and body.

You always have to be realistic about your new habit changes. You will get overwhelmed if you do too many at the same time. I would recommend looking at your harmful habit list and seeing if any, can be organized together.

Once they are organized, you can see how they are related and create a habit system and complete one habit that will help lead to the next bad habit to conquer. For instance, going to bed late and getting up late in the morning. Perhaps work on going to bed early first. Once that healthy habit has been established, the next logistical practice to create would be to get up earlier.

If you set up too much too soon, you’re going to end up stumbling, failing, and then end up quitting. Small changes in your daily routine will end up creating more prodigious healthy habits in the long run. You’re not going to be seeing instant results. You are looking to change your lifestyle, and you still want to live your life, you need to have the new habit feel natural in the long run.

Two: Mental Check-ins
When you check-in on your mental state, you are checking in with your body, mind, and space. Mostly, you are mindful. Your mindfulness is a huge component of starting a healthy lifestyle. You cannot start a healthy lifestyle if you are not mentally into it. You have to examine where you are right now.

You have to look at yourself mentally, emotionally, and physically within your area. When you check-in mentally, try to accept where you are, and where it’s at right now. When dwelling on the past or looking too much into the future, you are taking in a negative mindset. You are blocking your potential to create and implement a healthier lifestyle.

Mindfulness, at the beginning of your healthy lifestyle, is going to be detrimental to the success of it. Our mind is the reflection of what we see externally, but a massive part of our mindset stems from the internal representation that we see our inner self. You can create mindfulness through a multitude of different exercises, journaling, listening to music, taking a nature walk, practice gratitude, and positive self-talk. The positive narratives help set positive intentions for your day that can help in your mindfulness journey.

Three: 10,000 Steps
Focus on walking. I aim for about 10,000 steps in a day. I have been implementing walking into my life. I’ve been using my phone, but you can also estimate that 2 hours of walking in a day is about 10,000 steps. This doesn’t mean straight walking or even a long distance walk. It can be cleaning your home, parking at the back of a parking lot, walking to work, or going to the bathroom, or even taking the stairs, every step counts. So, two hours in your day of walking isn’t a lot. You can do little things to reach your 10,000 step goal.

You’ll be amazed how much walking you can incorporate into your daily routine. When you have a body stationary, it creates a loss of connection to the world and can increase the likelihood of depression. There is so much to benefit from moving your body. It creates flow not only with your organs but with your brain and your positive well-being.

Four: Clean-up Before Bed
I find by putting things away and creating a clean environment. I tend to have a positive morning. No one likes to wake up to a messy room. You may feel slow and unmotivated. In the morning, you may worry about the dishes in the sink or decide not to eat a healthy breakfast because there is no room to cook. It’s not the best way to start the day.

I like to do my daily prays and reflections at night. I can reflect on my day create stillness in my mind while I am tidying the end of the day. It’s an excellent way to clean up my mental trash before I go to bed. This practice helps my mind feel refreshed in the morning.

Five: Surround Yourself with Positivity
We all do this. We are in a funk, so we gravitate to the negativity that surrounds us. I know I have a hard time listening to how great someone has when I am suffering. However, this is a perfect time to listen to the positive. Your brain with a click and a switch, and you will stop resisting the negative pushback.

What I do is put on a playlist that makes me happy, meditate as I am cleaning, journalling for five minutes, sitting in a crowded cafe and listening to other laughter or even watching an adorable cat video could help me see a little bit more positivity in your life. Once you have that moment of realizing you are not quite in the funk, please do something to extend yourself to a better place, like talking to a good friend or writing an email to a coworker or family member to let them know they matter. I am surprised how this action can change my whole outcome for the day.

Implementing wellness in your mind every single day helps you create a positive space in every aspect of your life. Wellness is emotional, spiritual, and physical. Make sure that you’re doing things every day to create wellness and better behaviors.

You are all you have, so make the most of today.

I hope you found this piece to be helpful. If you have any suggestions or ideas, I would love to hear from you.

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Self-Love & Meditation: Improving Mental Health in Daily Routines

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”

Aristotle had articulated this excellent quote with only 15 words, for a long time of my life, I didn’t believe him.

I struggled for having good habits in my daily life because I wanted to have my own rules of being not of others. I tried to create my world to live, my kingdom to be queen to myself.

Skipping the self-fulfilling activities such as exercising, meditating, yoga and making gratitude lists—we may disadvantage ourselves from the vitality that these unusual pleasant activities give to my mind and body.

Why Create a Routine?
Creating a positive daily routine is both a self-investment and a way to do your best for the rest of the world. It also provides additional benefits, such as giving you structure, building forward-moving habits, and creating momentum that will carry you on the days when you feel like you don’t have the strength to love yourself.

Don’t be afraid to try new habits and see how they work for you. If they leave you feeling energized and inspired, keep doing them…if they don’t, keep trying new ones until you find ones that do.

Optimize Your Mind

Get positive: Start the day with a mantra. Positive thinking helps manage stress and even improves your health.

“Today is going to be the best day ever!”

I start every single day saying that simple sentence (out loud) as soon as I get out of bed. And yes, I even tell myself this on mornings that have followed nights that were too short or mornings that I wake up feeling like the weight of the world is on my shoulders.

Be proactive: Don’t check your email first!
When you wake up in the morning, do you immediately check your email or social media accounts? If so, you’re starting your day off in reactive mode instead of proactive.

Start your days focused on YOU, and you will be in a much better state-of-mind to help others and get more accomplished all day.

Be Mentally Prepare: Visualize your success
Jack Canfield, the co-author of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, recommended that practice visualization 10 minutes a day to “harness the power of your subconscious mind.”

Just close your eyes and imagine yourself excelling and being the best you. Put yourself in situations where you shine, visualizing the best possible outcome.

Read a book
Reading can boost your intelligence, increase your brainpower. You may find it hard to find the time to read an entire book. You can just read only one chapter each day of a book of your choice.

Writing: A way to creativity
Spending time writing every day helps you become a better communicator, improves your ability to recall relevant information, and it also enhances your creativity. Write in a diary format, and you also have the added benefit of greater self-understanding.

Ways to Boost Your Body
Drink 9-13 cups of water a day
Exercise (MOVE!)

Even you can take a 10-20 minute walk. Do yoga, stretches, or dance
around your living room.
Get enough sleep: No less than 7 hours

Optimize your Spirit
Practice meditation: If the idea of “meditating” can be a turn-off, then think about it as spending some daily quiet time alone. Engaging in this daily practice has a lot of positive benefits. As a greater focus, better decision making and problem-solving skills improved memory, and an easier time managing hyperactivity or attention deficit disorder. Meditation also reduces stress, anxiety, and depression according to Harvard University studies, which are even more reasons to give it a try if you haven’t before.

Practice gratitude: Write what you’re thankful for in your life
If you woke up tomorrow and only had the things you were grateful for
Today, what would you have? Expressing gratitude at the end of the day for all of the blessings in your life, you do two things. First, you recognize that even though things may not be as you’d like, you are fortunate to have what you do. Second, the more blessings you are thankful for, the more you draw in or attract. It’s like they multiply.

Give to others
There is something extremely sense of satisfaction when you help those around you. It is not necessary to do huge acts of service/virtue. It can be even something as simple as opening the door for someone or giving a stranger (or loved one) a genuine compliment can make a significant impact on their day…and yours.

Once habits slowly start to take root into your daily life, you have the freedom to do so much more. You are not thinking of the small things but the greater picture. It’s important to find a routine that maximizes your inner strength and beauty. Sometimes there is a lot of trails and errors, but you have every moment of every day to try to pick yourself up and start again.

I hope you found this article helpful. Let me know if you have a habit that helps you and promotes self-love. Please comment below.

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A Simple Exercise in Gratitude

I am no stranger to anxiety and depression. I have suffered from it for most of my life. Nowadays, I am a little open-minded to the possibility that I can change my mood or at least the view of my day by doing a simple exercise.

It seems that in today’s world, being negative is sort of taking over. There seems to be more and more things that are not acceptable, and there are other things that are acceptable but entirely unattainable for the average person. So, I hope this practice can help you and your outlook.

This exercise is designed to help you think more positively and hopefully be able to help you deal with the negative things a little bit better. It sounds easy, but can be challenging for those stuck in a depressed or anxious state.

You just start by creating a gratitude list each day.

Each day, write down the things that you appreciate in life. You may start off great, but you’ll have a day when nothing seems excellent. That’s where your mind is going to kick in and will help you find the appreciation of the smaller things.

An example for me would be the love of my family, the support of my friends, having a home, and the ability to eat good food. In a few days, it may be harder, so I have to start to look at my current surroundings like, my dog under my foot as I type or this warm cup of coffee that tastes amazing. By consistently practicing this, it helps make me feel good and helps to set up my day a little bit better.

Now you might think that sounds weird, especially if you are currently anxious or depressed, but that’s kind of how it works. I really have started to appreciate the tiny little things. It gives me a moment to get out of my head or opens me up to get help.

It does help me to think more positively and to really start appreciating everything in my life. When you are in a mood, the negative thoughts are a lot more powerful than positive ones. It’s so easy to think of something negative. This exercise, allows your mind to tell your brain, “Ok, you do not like it but, here at least there is something positive in the situation.” You want to keep trying to put these positive thoughts into your mind until they start to become second nature in your daily practice.

I wanted to share this little exercise because it seems to help me. It does take time and patience, but try not to be hard on yourself. Gratitude is something most of us don’t practice because we are stuck in the past or future of being without. This exercise allows me to pay attention to the moment and can help me change my thoughts. I hope it does the same for you.

What kind of practices do you do to help change your mood?

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