Welcome to part TWO of my Tips to a Healthier You series. If you haven't already read part one, click here first and read that post all about how you can begin to make shifts in your food/diet habits.
The reason I made this topic a two-part series is because I truly believe a complete, healthy self comes from not only the food we eat. You can eat all the kale in the world, get your daily does of collagen, and drink tons of water, but still not feel truly "healthy" if you're not taking care of the other important things as well.
As you begin to make small shifts to your diet and lifestyle, you'll notice so many changes in how you feel, how you think, and how you live. Some changes you make will immediately have positive impacts, while others might not work right for you. Your health journey is just that, a JOURNEY. Something that works for me or your friend or your favorite Instagram follow might not work for you. Do your research, listen to your body, and find what works for YOU.
I can promise you this, feeling your absolute best and most healthy is seriously addicting. You will find that making diet and lifestyle shifts is one of the most empowering and motivating things you can do for yourself. And you're worth it.
So let's get started with my lifestyle tips!
1. Prioritize sleep
I can't stress this one enough. Sleep is just so important. Granted there are a few of those people out there who claim they go off 4 hours of sleep and feel fine, but you're likely not one of those. Most people need 7-9 hours in order to feel their best and function at their best. Sleep is another great example of the importance of figuring out what works for you. I personally do best on 8.5-9 hours of sleep. I make it a priority everyday. Sometimes it's not possible, but I purposefully put my sleep above most other commitments. I know I won't be my best at other parts in my life I'm not getting enough sleep. Interested in learning more about the importance of sleep? I love this article and this article from mindbodygreen.
2. Learn to say "no" and do what's best for you, regardless of what people think
This is something that has taken me a very long time to truly feel comfortable with. I have always been a bit of an old soul and definitely a home-body. I'm not a big drinker and prefer a glass of wine at home rather than going out to the bars with a big group. I've learned that it's 100% okay to do what makes me feel my best and not feel pressured to go out and do things that don't bring me happiness. Learn to say "no" when you're invited somewhere that you don't to go. Learn to say "no" when someone asks when if you want a drink and you really don't want one. Learn to say "no" when your to-do list is already a mile long and you're asked to take on another assignment. Learn to put yourself first, do what's best for you, and be true to who you are.
3. Love yourself
This is one that I'm admittedly still working on, but I definitely recognize its importance. Think about some of the negative thoughts you have about yourself, whether it's about something you said that you thought was stupid or something about your body you don't love or a dream you're not pursuing because you don't think you're smart/good enough. Now imagine saying those thoughts to your best friend. You would never do so, right? So why say them to yourself? Be your own best friend and treat yourself with the same love and respect that you do to those you love. Your thoughts become your beliefs which become your reality. Be kind to yourself and you'll be amazed at how great it feels.
4. Make time for self-care activities that make you happy
For me, it's a nightly skincare routine, dry brushing, coconut oil pulling, and warm baths before bed. These four things I do on a regular basis and I just love the way I feel after each one. It's my time during each day to focus just on me. It's non-negotiable. I incorporate the costs in my monthly budget and schedule it into my day. Find a routine or activity that is 100% focused on caring for you. You are worth it.
5. Pay attention to the ingredients in your household cleaning products and beauty products
This is one I've talked about a little in my Top Favorite Beauty Products post. It's common knowledge that we are what we eat. If you ingest foods full of chemicals and poor ingredients, that ends up hurting us internally long-term. Everyone knows that. So why is it that most people don't recognize the harm in putting chemicals on our skin, our largest organ? Skin absorbs everything that you put on it which makes it so important to pay attention to what you're using everyday. This also goes for household cleaning products. All those chemicals usually come in contact with your skin and definitely end up airborne in the air we breathe. Start small, and begin to transition your daily products to ones that are safer. A few brands I love and use daily: Primally Pure, Beauty Counter, CocoKind, Tata Harper, Mrs. Meyers, and The Laundress.
I hope these tips help you get started towards your health goals! As always, leave a comment or send me an email with any questions. And if you don't already, give my Instagram for more inspiration.