The Many Layers Of “Wellness” and How To Easily Enjoy More of it Every Day
So many times we read or hear about wellness and self-care and the importance of it. But what does wellness actually mean to you? It might be as small as working out regularly, eating a healthy diet, and going to the doctor for a regular check-up once or twice a year. It might mean simply existing in a state that is acceptable, but just short of any symptoms from illness.
But should health that doesn’t signal a red flag or a problem define the standards of what is actually optimal health? Even when we think we are “fine” there’s a good chance there are smaller, easy things we can do a lot more of. Too often, we aren’t in tune with the true signals our body is trying to tell us. A small headache can often indicate dehydration. Fatigue can be a way of your body letting you know that you are depressed or absorbing too much stress. Skin issues and asthma can indicate that we are fighting inflammation or even a gut issue. Yet, so many times, we shrug off these signals as “I’m just tired today” or “I have a headache so I’ll just take some aspirin”. We move on and don’t put any more consideration into the tiny messages our body is sending to let us know it needs more care.
How much time do you invest in your health and well-being every week?
We put a lot of emphasis into our daily obligations – our jobs, our children’s needs, paying our bills, and staying social. But without our health, we aren’t able to perform these duties and go throughout our day or live our lives to our fullest abilities. It seems like common sense, yet how many of us actually dedicate a solid block of time in our days to our mental and physical well-being? How much time do we truly invest in ourselves on a regular basis?
With most of us leading busy lives, the simple act of setting aside time for ourselves in any given day can seem like a chore itself. But what if we took the standards and the expectations of setting that time aside out and we commit to just five minutes a day, which can easily turn into fifteen or thirty? If we allow ourselves to constantly be creative in our daily routines, we can easily incorporate tiny steps of wellness that add up to a larger picture of optimal health.
The simple things we love that count toward wellness
To start to let go of the idea that health and wellness is another box to check on our to-do lists, a better workaround is getting creative with activities you enjoy that are stress-relieving and promote being active. If you love sports, spending time being active with your kids or playing with your dog is a small but rewarding way to get some extra exercise in, while enjoying connection with your loved ones. If you enjoy music, dancing or taking a Zumba class can be an extension of your passion to move with the beat. If you love cooking, then finding new and exciting virtual cooking classes or events to attend can be a way to ignite this passion and learn new things with others.
In the circumstance that you work a lot or travel, you may not have the time to dedicate to hobbies or family as much as you’d like. Finding something like a virtual yoga or meditation class, even if just for 10 minutes of your day, can be extremely rewarding for productivity and restoration by boosting your mind and stretching your muscles after long periods of sitting or travel.
All the parts your personality are made up with the things you love and enjoy, and when you can find a way to bring those things into your life eevery day, you are in essence paving the road to your best mental health. By re-defining the ways we look at ‘health and wellness’ and allowing simple small acts throughout the day to count and matter just as much as things like vigorous exercise, we can start to be easier on ourselves with our expectations and work to build more of these things. The simple act of awareness and noticing signs that our body needs more from us can be the simple reminder that it’s time to take a few moments to indulge in something that makes us healthier and happier in some way.
Easy additions to add wellness into your routine daily
The many layers of wellness encompass your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Our body is a complex but very amazing machine capable of going through a lot of stress and depletion well before it shows signs of it’s wear and tear. With wellness, simply exercising isn’t the only answer, but it’s a start and a great healthy part of any routine. The other essentials like getting sleep, drinking enough water, giving your body the nutrients you need, getting sunshine, taking deep breaths throughout the day, and even taking some time to spend confiding in a friend or catching up with family are the other pieces that make up a well-balanced sphere of your wellness.
Where the simple act of finding time to exercise for 30 minutes can feel impossible, the small actions that can add up throughout the day are easy for anyone to squeeze in.
- Set reminders to yourself to get up and walk or do some squats – even if just for two minutes every hour or two when you have a desk job.
- Take the stairs every chance you get.
- Add more veggies and reduce your carbs for a week and see how you feel.
- Switch your soda to selzter water.
- Try your coffee with less cream or sugar – or better yet – try drinking your coffee black.
- Challenge yourself to drink a glass of water before and after every meal and when you wake up in the morning.
- When you start to feel stressed, remember to close your eyes and take several long, deep breaths or meditate.
- Spend time watching or reading something that makes you laugh.
- Find bloggers on Instagram that inspire you for healthier meal alternatives, including 5 of our top recommendations.
- Go for a walk in nature.
- Get some sun or try an outdoor exercise class.
- Go on a bike ride.
- Help out a friend, family member, neighbor, or your community.
- While it’s important to make time for others, never feel guilty about making time for yourself.
It’s the countless little actions like these that can add up every day and make an impact into your overall well-being. If you already have a workout routine, you are already in the habit of dedicating some time for yourself and it will be even easier to enhance your wellness in all these other simple yet necessary ways.
Things to remember on your worst days
You’re going to have days where you forget to do everything, or you simply aren’t in the mindset, or your life gets in the way. It’s completely normal, and should be expected. The important thing is that you always get back on the train again and remember all the easy ways to build more wellness into your life and prioritize your well-being.
It’s a blessing to be alive and an even greater fortune to have our health. By investing in ourselves in tiny ways every single day, overtime we can start to build the best version of ourselves that’s something we can not only be proud of, but allows our best energy to be put forth in the world.