5 Mind-Body Wellness Strategies You Can Start Today
July 25, 2019
Body and Mind are one. The idea that there is a connection between your mental state and your health is now a widely established concept. So it stands to reason that getting our minds and bodies in sync can improve our overall health and happiness. The trick is actually doing it. But it’s not as hard or daunting as it seems. It takes focusing on just a few things to begin a journey on the road to better health and mind/body well being. Following are 5 simple steps you can begin today to get you started.
This one seems so obvious. We breathe without thinking about it, it’s what keeps us alive. But consciously focusing on the breath brings calmness and clarity almost instantly. Paying attention to the rise and fall of your chest and as your lungs expand. Try Soft-belly breathing, place a hand on your belly as you focus on relaxing your body and softening your belly as your muscles calm and your lungs breathe in and out. This stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system to control the relaxation response. Take a deep breath and your mind and body will relax. It’s that simple.
2. START LOVING YOURSELF
There are many ways to love, and they start with loving yourself. But how does that happen, exactly? Positive emotions such as love, compassion, and joy provide a healing bath of biochemicals improving the health and function of the heart, and the entire body and brain as well. One of our greatest blocks to loving-kindness is our own sense of unworthiness.
Love and compassion begin with kindness toward ourselves and one of the first steps to loving yourself is addressing your wounds, so forgive yourself and let whatever is blocking you fall away. One great way to love yourself is to take the best care of your skin. Choose great, organic, natural botanical products and develop a skincare kindness routine morning and evening. You will feel pampered and your skin will thank you with a radiant glow.
3. PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT YOU EAT
Yes, healthy foods make us healthier. Consuming organic vegetables and fruits, healthy fats, nuts, herbs, spices and fish is beneficial; eating processed carbohydrates, large amounts of red meat and chicken, as well as wheat, other glutens, sugar and dairy is not. But it’s more than just our physical health. Eating poorly affects our brain’s neurotransmitters and the ability to do its job, including regulating our moods. And that goes for alcohol and smoking, too. Make wise choices about what you put in your mouth and watch what happens to your brain, body and well-being.
4. SLEEP WELL
The average adult needs seven to eight hours of quality sleep, but how many of us actually get that? A key hormone produced during sleep is melatonin, which helps regulate other hormones and the body’s circadian rhythms, which in turn control brain and body functions within 24-hour activity patterns. Healthy circadian rhythms support the mind-body balance. Create a healthy sleep habit by eating a healthy diet, getting some physical activity, get some early morning and late afternoon sun exposure, have a bedtime relaxation ritual and sleep in a cool, completely dark room.
Inner health shines as outward wellness when you exercise several times weekly. Depending upon the practice, exercise involves developing a relationship with your body and cultivating the mind-body-spirit connection. A regular exercise routine provides major benefits such as improved mood, confidence, emotional balance, increased energy, strength, flexibility, stamina, reduced stress, lowered blood pressure and total cholesterol, and decreased body fat. Find something that works for you, the options are plentiful – walk, bike, go to a gym with classes, do yoga, try tai chi, take a dance class, swim if you have access to a pool or hike which provides a connection with nature at the same time as getting you physically moving, it’s the best of both worlds.
Take these few simple steps toward improving your mind/body connection and embrace your personal commitment to thrive.