Quality sleep is an important part of our overall health. Making a commitment to yourself to get a decent sleep regularly is great a great way to nurture yourself. Sleep deprivation can lead to an increased risk of weight gain, heart disease and even depression.
We all have plenty of reasons for not getting enough sleep so we have to find a way to prioritise it for our overall wellbeing. Look for ways to build it into your schedule and to improve your quality and quantity of sleep.
TIP: Try to implement a decrease in screen time in the lead up to going to bed I.e. If you can avoid looking at it within the last 45-30min before going to bed as screens stimulate you and increase the difficulty in going to sleep. Try to cut out other stimulants like caffeine in the evenings. You can even look at implementing a routine like reading before bed as a wind down method.
4. Implement a personal self care or me-time ritual
Implement a self care ritual or routine into your day or your week. Only you know what is truely 'do-able' for you that you can stick to but it's so important. Self care is not a selfish thing its crucial for you to operate at your best for all of those lives around you be it your friends and family or your workplace not to mention your own wellbeing. When you make time and space for your own self care you will find yourself being more present and in the moment with those around you throughout your day.
Especially helpful for those of us in care taking roles with children or elderly parents for example, Now...I know we all get 'busy' being 'busy' in our lives but this is a necessity for our wholistic mental and emotional wellbeing. It aids to keep us balanced. Even if your self care ritual is just a 5, 10 or 15min meditation squeezed somewhere into your day! It will leave you feeling more calm, centred and present throughout the rest of your day so actively look for a way to work it into your schedule. You can even put a reminder in your calendar.
A self care act can be whatever self care means to you; be it having a lovely bath with essential oils and a candle, attending a regular yoga class, making yourself a healthy veggie juice daily or a healthy meal for yourself or even getting an early night here and there to aid your sleep.
Decide what your act of self care is and book it in and make an active commitment to incorporate it in your routine.
5. Prepare more Home Cooked Meals
When we are eating on the go we are more likely to eat convenience foods that are less healthy than what we could prepare at home. Preparing our meals at home enables us to eat more mindfully and be more conscience and in-tune to our bodies food craving cues so we are less likely to eat heavily processed foods.
You can look to gradually increase your meals prepared and eaten at home. A fresh produce box delivered to your door is a great way of taking the thinking out of food prep whilst also encouraging you to eat based on what in season and what ingredients you actually have in your pantry and fridge rather than go to the supermarket where you are more likely to impulse purchase packaged foods and spend more on your overall grocery bill.
You can increase your meals prepared at home gradually until you are more comfortable preparing most of your meals at home and leaving dining out more for social occasions.
Not only does this encourage you to be more creative wth meal preparation, you may find you commence eating better quality whole-foods and feel better in yourself overall. If your interested in home cooked recipes and what to cook based on what's in season check out our blog here
6. Experiment with mediation
You've heard by now the mediation is good for you and has calming affects on the body, this is all well documented and evidenced in studies now but have you actually tried to implement your own version of a mediation ritual into your daily life?
Like anything you have to be disciplined and prioritise it if you're serious about giving it a go. And like anything it takes practice to feel the benefits of mediation its a gradual thing. I.e. You're not going to expect to get toned muscle tissue on your arms and legs by working out once a week or twice a month are you? But you can realistically expect that if you stick it out and do it regularly you will be able to see the physical results. Mediation can be the same but it impacts how you feel and aids you to be more present and in-tune to yourself and what matters to you in daily life and the bigger picture.
You don't have to dive in the deep end with mediation either and do long mediations daily to get the effect. Like jogging you're not necessarily going to go for an hour run after no practice straight off the bat are you? You can build into it in small increments from as little as 5 or 10min and you'll know when to increase it if you are not finding it long enough and wanting to stay relaxed and enjoy it in the moment. Try Spotify guided mediations or even YouTube for free mediations or there are plenty of apps in the app store to choose from also.
7. Be kinder to yourself and others
When it comes to the way we think about ourselves we rarely give ourselves a break a lot of the time. Heard the expression 'we are our own worst critic or enemy?' Self talk can have a serious impact on how we view ourselves, our body attitude and our attitudes towards other people both known to us and strangers.
Decide to be more self aware of every time you speak to yourself negatively i.e. if you look in the mirror and you immediately start to identify and call out what you see as your floors. Observe the thoughts and gently let them go without fuss or attention. Start to try and catch yourself before you go to speak negativity and go for the nearest more positive statement towards yourself instead i.e. reinforcing what you love about yourself. Speaking to yourself mindfully and more positively has proven benefits that are positive for your health and vitality.
8. Add more fresh organic produce to your diet
Adding more fresh organic vegetables and fruits into your meal planning can go a long way towards improving your overall health and wellbeing.
Numerous studies have demonstrated eating a diet rich in fresh produce helps protect against illnesses including; diabetes, heart diseases, some cancers, obesity, and even overall mortality rates.
9. Find a hobby that brings you joy
It's easy to let the busyness of daily life get in the way of the hobby you once loved and enjoyed. Or perhaps you've never really found something that you love as you are too busy taking care of others needs around you that you care about. However, having a love or hobby that you really enjoy can increase the satisfaction you get out of life, give you something to look forward to and studies have even shown that it can increase your life expectancy.
Experiment with a variety of different things and see what resonates with you and stick with it. You are never too old to gain joy out of trying something new.
10. Release the need to diet and control food choices
A healthy life starts with healthy food choices and unfortunately many of us find this difficult. We can easily get caught up on a merry-go-round of diets when really all we need to do is listen to our bodies more intuitively and mindfully and not impose strict bans that restrict certain foods completely as this can backfire and lead to binge eating and weight regaining within a short time span.
Rather than this fixed and depressing approach of deprivation we can look to create more long term, manageable and sustainable food choices that lead us to make healthier decisions that are much more sustainable longer term without needing to feel deprived of certain foods.
We look forward to going into detail on mindful eating practices in future blogs so be sure to check back to learn more on this concept and gain inspiration on how you could adapt this sort of practice in your own way that's right for you in consultation with your doctor or certified health professional.
Ultimately, we hope this gives you some things to think about when considering your personal commitment to yourself this new year as we want the new years resolutions you make with yourself and your family and friends to be rewarding, realistic and attainable without falling off the apple cart to early in the year so to speak! We hope this has given you some positive things to think about that you may be able to apply in your life.
Elisha Foods is an organic produce home delivery service in the Bayside area of Melbourne delivering fresh thoughtfully curated organic Australian grown produce boxes directly to your door fresh, same-day-as-sourcing each and every Tuesday between 3-7pm weekly. Elisha Foods offers mixed Fruit and Veg, Veg only and Fruit only produce boxes on a pay-as-you-go or subscription service. Learn more about our produce boxes here. Learn more about what's in the box each week here.