Yesterday, many people celebrated Valentine’s Day. A day when you show the one’s you love how much you care. It is great to show others how much you care for them, but don’t forget to show yourself a little love too! You must take good care of yourself to sustain the level of energy required to work hard and pursue your dreams everyday. You can only last so long on no sleep, junk food, and zero exercise.
Your health and wellness should be a priority. If you want to pursue happiness and be successful you must focus on building healthy habits and practices into your everyday life. Self-care is often overlooked but it is a hidden gem of long term success.
To step up your self-care game make sure you are doing the following things:
- Catch Some zzzzzz’s. Unfortunately we live in a World where working on lack of sleep is worn like a badge of honor. Running on low sleep is actually not a good thing for your mind or body. Studies suggest that teens should be getting 8-10 hours of sleep each night.
Track your sleep this week. How many hours do you sleep each night? Make adjustments if needed. Your brain will thank you with more productivity and less mood swings.
- Eat well. Treat yourself well with good nutritious food choices. Try to hit all the food groups by eating a variety of protein, fruits, veggies, and whole grains throughout the day. Research shows us that the brain is an energy hungry organ. Although it is small (only taking up about 2% of our body weight) the brain needs more than 20% of our daily calorie intake to function well. Since the brain is in need of so much energy, the foods we consume are super important and will greatly affect how we learn, remember, and control our emotions.
- Move + Sweat. Speaking of the brain, besides food energy, the brain loves movement. If you want to take care good care of yourself one of the best things you can do is get up and move.You should exercise at least 3 days per week, Choose an activity that raises your heart rate, such as, walking, swimming, mowing the lawn, skating, biking, or dancing. Making this a habit can lead to feeling better, more energy, and improved self – esteem.
- Relax + Unwind + Disconnect We live in a go, go, go, World. Be sure you take a break from all the stress. Just 15 minutes every day can do wonders for your mind and body. Do something that brings you joy and zero stress. There is tons of research to show that daily mindfulness practices such as yoga and meditation lead to a reduction in anxiety and feelings of overwhelm. If you can’t see yourself doing yoga try something like coloring or painting, walking on a trail without headphones, or a breathing exercise. Just remember to unplug and sign off social media to truly make this step count.
Take a moment to think about which one of these items you will put into practice. Start with one thing. A little attention to yourself goes a long way. Once you master one step towards better self-care try to build another into your day. Before you know it you will be feeling good, performing better, and dominating your goals.
If you want to learn more about focusing on yourself and would like to develop a personal road map to success join us this summer at one of our program sessions in New Haven, CT or Berkeley, CA.