Many individuals will start the year with a resolution, and the most common goal is to lead a healthier lifestyle. But what exactly does that mean? For every person, the answer could be different. Some people view mental health as the most important factor in overall wellness and will look to create more space for rest, relaxation, and reflection during their health journey. Others will focus on the physical fitness aspect of their well-being and start going to the gym or running regularly. Still, others will consider social health to be a priority and will try to make more time for their friends and family members out of their busy schedules.
Whatever specific area of health you will focus on, a holistic approach to wellness is the most effective. In other words, how can you improve the behaviors in all major areas of health, from physical to mental to social?
Finding new methods to contribute to an overall healthy lifestyle can be a difficult practice. Not everyone is built the same way, so the activities or behaviors that motivate each of us will look different from person to person. To get your imagination moving, here are four ways that you can start contributing to a healthy lifestyle today.
Create Time to be Still
It can be tough to live in the moment when your schedule is full and the responsibilities are stacking up. You may be constantly on the go from one task to the next, and even the activities that should be enjoyable end up draining you of energy and happiness. Sometimes, you need to take a moment to be still and present. Some of the most common ways to do so are meditation or time spent outside. When you set aside time in your daily or weekly routine to just be still, you could see enormous benefits in the area of mental health. You can pause, observe, reflect, and then return to your activities with a renewed mindset and energy level. Maybe there is a nearby waterfall where you can sit and listen to its sounds for half an hour to slow down the pace of the day. Or you could have a quiet room in the house dedicated to meditation. Make sure that you block out time for this type of stillness or it could easily be moved to make room for your other responsibilities.
Pursue Weight Loss
Obesity and being overweight are big health concerns in this country. Although learning to accept yourself is important, there is a correlation between being overweight and experiencing certain health problems. Focusing on weight loss can contribute to a healthy lifestyle in several ways, including a reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes, higher energy levels, and lower chances of joint pain. Working to lose weight can also lead to improved mental health as well, as exercise can release positive endorphins that put you in a better mood.
Cut Out Unhealthy Habits
You could have the healthiest diet, the strongest mental health, a great social life, and the ideal exercise routine, but if you are engaging in certain unhealthy habits, that could all be compromised. Putting the wrong types of substances into your body regularly can damage your wellness and reduce your ability to fight off diseases and maintain independence as you age. Smoking and excessive drinking are two of the most common vices that are likely to hurt your health, (though drinking alcohol in moderation can actually be healthy). They can also severely damage your social life, making it unpleasant to be around you. If you are actively engaged in these activities, reducing or cutting them out entirely could make a huge difference in your wellness and will have a positive butterfly effect on the other healthy behaviors in your life.
Support a Healthy Diet with Supplements
Some people make the mistake of thinking that dietary supplements can make up for poor food choices. The rationale is that these products provide the nutrient levels that you are missing when you skip out on certain food groups like fruits, vegetables, meats, grains, or dairy. But supplements work far more effectively as an addition to an already healthy diet. They are the perfect way to support balanced eating and can help renew optimal cellular health throughout your body. By taking a vitamin or mineral supplement in addition to the right eating habits, you are further contributing to a healthy lifestyle.
What Changes Will You Adopt to Contribute to a Healthy Lifestyle?
As stated before, the concept of health will look different for everyone. People have different body types, expectations, and definitions of health that will affect how they pursue their goals. Overall wellness is best seen as a combination of the various areas of health like physical fitness, mental/emotional wellness, and social engagement.
If you want to contribute to a healthy lifestyle to maintain longevity, mobility, and independence, start making some of these changes now and see how it optimizes your wellness and enjoyment of life.