Now is the time to create some healthy habits
by CHRIS SHARP
8th February 2021
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Let’s hope 2021 is a successful year in your chosen endeavours after the turmoil and instability of last year.
Personally, it was tough for me as I am sure it was for many of you.
Besides losing my studio in Warrandyte, I lost my way and didn’t feel I had a real sense of purpose.
I found it a challenge to function day-to-day, finish tasks, and wound up isolating myself more.
This led me to a path of what I’d call self-destruction where I’d fall into bad habits.
I struggled for motivation; I was staying up too late, therefore sleeping in too late.
I was drinking more alcohol than normal and just generally partying too hard.
My body and brain were not functioning as they should.
They were real “groundhog days” just accumulating until things got back to some normality.
I can’t afford to lose sleep nor over-jam my schedule.
I need to keep up with those good habits for the sake of my heart, mind, and physical health.
I believe this is the same for everybody.
When you’re stressed or emotionally distressed, your heart is one of the first organs in your body that will feel the pain and react.
But here we are in February 2021, we are back working hard, kids are now at school, holidays are over, so I thought I’d share some healthy habits with you.
There are so many of them, but I thought I’d give you five that will hold you in good stead this year and beyond.
Get a morning routine that suits you
How you start your day really matters.
The way you approach a morning determines what mood you’ll be in that entire day.
If you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, rush to get dressed, skip breakfast or shove something in your mouth and rush to work, you’ll most likely feel rattled for the day.
A morning routine will help you ease into your day and start off on the right foot.
If you have had a goal to have more time in the mornings, start in 15-minute increments.
Wake up 15 minutes earlier each day until you are happy with the time.
More time in the mornings means more time and attention to work obligations and people you care most about.
Exercise for at least 30 minutes a day
Don’t just grab another cup of coffee — get up and move.
Have a PT session, do a fitness class, lift some weights, go for a jog followed by some stretches.
It is great for your body and mind. Just 30 minutes of walking, five times a week, may help keep the blues at bay.
And if you can’t do it all at once, short bursts help, too.
Organise your home or workspace for 15 minutes
15 minutes of cleaning a night (or morning, whichever works best) will add time to your life.
Your home should be your oasis.
A clean place is vital for stress management.
I just let my place build up with untidiness, clutter, and dust, I just could not face cleaning it.
It affected my mood and motivation.
Make sure all the dishes and washing are put away and the beds are made in the morning.
Shower before bed and enjoy fresh sheets on the bed, it really does make a difference.
Develop your evening routine
An evening routine can consist of reading, Yoga, meditation, cleaning and organising, or doing an exercise.
Winding down is critical for mental health management.
Three hours before bed might be the time you want to start allowing your brain and mind to relax.
Your evening routine can entail anything that promotes peace and serenity.
If something relaxes you and gets you prepared for bed, do that.
To make a health goal into a habit, set a time to stop working.
Keep a journal
This is something new for me, but I love the idea and think it’s really helping me.
It can be done in three to five minutes.
Try logging what you accomplished each day and what you need to do the next.
Create a comprehensive outline showcasing how much you have achieved and what else needs attention.
You will be amazed when you realise how much you’ve done in a day and hopefully will stop being so hard on yourself.
I am ridiculously hard on myself, unnecessarily so, and it’s unhealthy for the heart and mind.
This journal writing saved me in a lot of ways.
I’m now ready to make 2021 my most successful year ever and I hope it will be for you too.
Yours in good health, Chris.
Chris Sharp is a Personal Trainer at Advance Fitness-Doncaster East and can be contacted 0419 553 058