Do you find yourself prioritizing ‘productivity’? If you choose work, housework or relationships over taking care of your body and mind too often you’re not alone. Our culture incentivizes and rewards a busy and hectic lifestyle. However, these ideas are dangerous and counterproductive. They often lead to exhaustion, fatigue, depression, anxiety and chronic pain.
Investing in your own health and well being should be a priority. In fact, it actually leads to increased productivity. You will also benefit from enhanced mood leading to greater mental and physical health and well being.
Here are five ways to start to make an investment in your health and show yourself some love this Valentine’s Day.
1. Commit to a Daily Meditation Practice
There is mounting evidence to suggest that meditation helps you to build your attention, manage your emotions and cope with daily stressors. In mindfulness meditation, you learn to bring your attention to the present moment. You will begin to notice what’s happening in your minds and body. With mindfulness we gain greater awareness and acceptance into the changing nature of our minds and bodies. Through this we are able to cultivate greater compassion towards ourselves and others.
Try out different duration, types and frequency of mindfulness practices and notice how you feel:
2. Build Yoga into your Workout Routine
Incorporating yoga into your fitness routine can help you improve flexibility, strength and balance. Yoga has also been shown to help improve mental health. Studies have found that this ancient practice can help to reduce stress, anxiety, depression, and chronic pain. It can also improve sleep patterns, and enhance overall well-being and quality of life.[i]
A yoga therapy practice can be profoundly healing if done with regularity. If a daily practice is too big a challenge, you can still reap benefits from a weekly session with a yoga therapist or instructor.
3. Book a Massage
Massage therapy is an excellent way to relieve muscle tension, pain and prevent injury. It can also lower stress and promote relaxation. There are a wide variety of massage therapy techniques including effleurage, petrissage, and vibration. Finding a registered massage therapist that can properly assess and treat your needs is essential in helping to meet your goals.
We offer a variety of massage therapy techniques and services in our clinic and through our mobile services.
- Swedish Massage
- Thai Massage
- Deep Tissue Massage
- Myofascial Release
- Lymphatic Drainage
- Joint Mobilizations
Massage therapy can also include acupuncture, cupping, hot stone, paraffin wax, and deep tissue release techniques.
4. Incorporate 20 minutes of Exercise into your Daily Routine
Few lifestyle choices have as large an impact on your health as physical exercise. Exercise has both immediate and long-term benefits to your health including:
- Brain health (reduce anxiety, improved thinking, learning and judgement for all ages)
- Weight management
- Reduced risk of disease (heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers)
- Strengthens bone and muscles (reduces risks of falls, improves management of arthritis)
- Improved independence in daily activities
- Longer life[ii]
Mixing it up with different types of exercise such as dancing, Pilates, yoga or high intensity interval training (HIIT) can also help keep you motivated to keep active long term.
Try these workouts with exercise physiologist Shriya Maharaj:
5. Make Sleep a Priority
Getting a good night’s sleep is the basis for feeling good and allowing your body to rest and heal. Sleep hygiene is important for all people. Some tips for getting a good sleep include:
- Avoiding caffeine and alcohol before bed
- Set your bedroom environment to be relaxing and sleep inducing
- Establish a soothing pre-sleep routine
- Set a consistent sleep schedule
- Be mindful of your evening meal
This Valentine’s Day show yourself some love. Make an investment in your health. Investing in your physical and mental health today will pay huge rewards in the long run in keeping you independent and mobile while preventing disability and illness.
Getting good advice and guidance is key in helping you get started in any healthy lifestyle choice. Contact us today to book your complimentary consultation, or to book an appointment with one of our therapists!