Sometimes, we just need to slow down in life and be in the moment. Here are a few ways to check back in to the wonderful reality you live in.
The dieting world is a $60+ billion industry– and it keeps growing. Why do you think that is? If diets actually worked, they’d put themselves out of business. The one thing that does work to improve your overall health and well-being?
Listening to your body and practicing mindfulness in everything you do.
Mindfulness is bringing your attention to the present moment. This can help tremendously when you venture into your personal health, because you are paying attention to what your body needs. Mindfulness can help you determine how you’re really feeling in the moment–
Are you hungry or full? Sad or happy? In need of self-care?
Our brains are wired to constantly worry about the future and ruminate about the past. All we really have is this present moment, so here are 6 ways to make mindfulness a part of your daily lives.
1. LEARN TO MEDITATE
Meditation is a scary word. The first thing people imagine when you say “meditate” is a person sitting on the ground with their legs all crossed saying “Ohhmm”. They also seem to be afraid of the concept of not thinking about anything. “How can you brain be empty?!”. But it’s so different than you imagine. Meditation can relieve stress and anxiety, increase concentration, help you sleep better, and so much more.
Sometimes just writing down your anxious thoughts can help them go away. Find yourself a hardback journal, your favorite pen, and get writing. If writing on blank pages scares you, try a journal with prompts already added.
3. MAKING EATING ENJOYABLE
Europeans take time to enjoy their meals– businesses shut down at lunch and meals are savored and appreciated. However, many Americans eat their way through lunch and don’t take time to slow down and be mindful. To get the most satisfaction from your meals, make time to appreciate your food. Sit down, take a couple deep breaths beforehand. Eat slowly and savor every bit.
You can also create a friendly meal environment at home as you eat. If you have time, set the table with placemats and use nice dishes. Buy fresh flowers weekly if the budget allows. Turn the TV off and put the cell phone away, and play some nice music. Enjoy conversation with your table mates!
4. PRACTICE SELF CARE
One form of self-care is making sure your basic needs are met. That means sometimes, taking care of yourself is to take a nap in the middle of the afternoon. Other ideas for self-care include getting a massage, meditating, taking a bubble bath, going to yoga, playing with your dog and setting out fresh flowers.
5. CONNECT WITH THE EARTH
Being in nature helps us stay in the moment and take a break from our technology-driven life. Go for a walk and fill your home with potted plants to bring in fresh greenery. Plant herbs and use them in your cooking. If you’re lucky enough to have a backyard, plant a small garden this year. Plan regular trips out to your favorite nature spots– whether it be the local park or lake, or an hour or two drive out into the country.
6. PRACTICE GRATITUDE
Start or end each day by mentally appreciating one aspect of your life that you are grateful for. While there are times when it can be difficult to name one, there is always something to be thankful in your life.
Recognize the fact you are alive today: that’s always something to be grateful for.
For more tips on staying happy and healthy, head to the original article.
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Emily Weeks, RDN, LD is a nationally-recognized nutrition and culinary expert based in Fort Worth, TX. Emily believes the path to a nourished, happy life is to develop a healthy relationship with food, our minds and our bodies. She focuses on helping others achieve a life of balance and harmony through mindfulness and nourished bodies. Read more from Emily at Zen and Spice.