Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.Jim Rohn
There are basics to taking care of your body: proper nutrition, plenty of water intake, and exercise. Of course, we all hear this everywhere we go. But it bears repeating. If you want to drop those last pounds, want to feel more energy, or just simply want to feel good in your body, we need to go back to basics. The details of proper nutrition is different for everyone – but the foundations are the same. Eat more live and raw foods (fruits, vegetables, nuts; something that hasn’t touched heat or has been processed). Drink more water. The main reason we overeat (aside from emotional comfort) is because we confuse thirst for hunger. And finally, move your body. You don’t have to call it exercise – it can be taking the stairs; dancing to your favorite tunes; gardening/yardwork.
It’s the only physiological process of your body that you have both voluntary and involuntary control. Just by learning to control your breath, you can slow down or speed up your body. If you’re feeling sluggish, do this: breathe in for 6 counts, breathe out for 3. Continue breathing this way for 3 minutes (repeat as often as you need). By the end of three minutes, you should feel a nice “pick me up.” If you’re feeling stressed or anxious, do the opposite. Breathe in for 3 counts, breathe out for 6. Continue for 3 minutes (or longer if you’re really enjoying the sensation).
Our current lifestyle is not conducive to optimal functioning of our bodies. We’re built to move, and yet we tend to sit for long stretches of times, even if we don’t have a “desk job.” Every 50 minutes, get up and take a 10 minute break. Move around. These breaks are a wonderful opportunity to hydrate. If you’re not able to get up and move around every 50 minutes (you should do this even on a plane!), simply close your eyes where you are. Mentally teleport yourself to a place that brings you relaxation and peace. One more critical suggestion: alongside the two (move, close your eyes), you can also opt to take it a step further and stretch. Immobility/lack of flexibility is a primary indicator of old age. Prevent it – and stretch.
Focus on Your Backdrop
Your environment plays a major role in how you feel. In fact, social psychology has shown that you’re conditioned by certain things in your environment, and that decisions can be influenced by your environment. Here are a few ways you can optimize your environment to feel at your best: get some fresh air. There’s nothing like sitting in a casino for 6 hours in recirculated/smoke-filled air… said no one ever (as an aside, did you know that they pump certain scents into the air to get you to stay and gamble longer? The pumping extra oxygen thing is a myth). Get out in nature more. I’ve worked with a client that significantly reduced stress by simply going out to the hiking trail to walk his dog, once a week. You can also bring nature to you – bring in some live plants into your home. Every room in the house should have at least one or two living plants. Finally, use color to your advantage. Colors like blue and green evoke a sense of calm and feeling serene.
Incorporate the 4B’s to Body Health: Basics, Breath, Breaks, and Backdrop. It’s always the simple things added up that make the biggest difference, not some monumental change you can’t keep up with.
Feel good – about your life, how you feel, and where you’re going. Take care of your body.
Live with intention. Lead with inspiration.