Tip #4 Look after yourself
The irony, right?! The time we most need to look after ourself is the time we least look after ourself.
When we are stressed, our choices around wellbeing often go out of the window and we can spiral into the vicious circle of one bad choice leading to the next. We figure that we will look after ourselves better when we get time.
Now is that time.
I know, it might not feel easy to make the best choices for yourself when you are stressed and we often set ourselves up for unrealistic goals when it comes to wellbeing. So here is my advice on that……anything is better than nothing. I mean it. If you’re drinking 10 cups of coffee a day it might not be realistic to try to cut it out completely, but having 2 or 3 less cups a day is really doable, and that can lead to sustainable change.
It’s all about momentum. One small choice in the right direction sets you on a whole new trajectory. And whilst it’s a cliche, every single new day is a new day, and is open to start again with new choices. If you screwed up looking after yourself yesterday, it doesn’t mean you have to today. If you’re trying to cut down on sugar and you’ve eaten a cake this morning, it doesn’t mean you have to eat cakes all day.
So, keeping things real…..read through these top suggestions in these 3 key areas and see what small step in the right direction you could choose to commit to…..
- Aim to get 7-9 hours per night. These few simple tips could help…
- Keep your bedroom a screen free zone….that means phones, tablets, laptops, and maybe even TV free. Get an alarm clock rather than use your phone as one.
- Avoid caffeine after lunch.
- Reduce alcohol or cut out altogether.
- Practice the breath practice from day 3 for 10 minutes before bedtime, or try this Evening Meditation
- The key here is that anything is better than nothing. One small choice after another leads to life changing habits in the long run. Every better choice you make is worth it, however small. Here are a few examples of doable choices…
- If you are currently eating a lot of sugar through chocolate, cakes, sweets, and/or fizzy drinks then commit to cutting down. Even by swapping one of those with a healthier option will build momentum.
- Drink plenty of water. Try replacing one or two cups of coffee or fizzy drinks a day with a glass of water and notice if you feel the difference.
- Eat food in it’s natural state and reduce the amount of processed food you eat. Simple things like making your own tomato sauce for pasta, rather than buying a ready made one. Or making batches of homemade soup to freeze in individual portions.
- Add fizzy water to your glass of wine to make a spritzer.
Like all lifestyle choices, any step in the right direction is a good one. We all know that exercise is an effective tool in dealing with stress so working out what exercise works for you and when you will do it is the key to making it part of your life. If you are looking for ways to do more then try these tips….
- Avoid an all or nothing attitude. Setting yourself a goal of going to the gym or going out running 5 days a week is unlikely to be realistic if you are super busy and currently not going at all. So set yourself a realistic target and commit to it. Once or twice a week might be more doable and is more doable if you aren’t currently doing any.
- Finding the type of exercise you enjoy and are physically capable of doing is key but it all counts. Walking in your lunch break, cycling to work, and doing the gardening all count.
- What small step can you take this week to do a bit more exercise if you need to?