What Does Healthy Mean, Anyway?

balloonsI don’t know about you, but for most of my adult life, my definition of health was pretty narrow. Being “healthy” to me, meant being skinny. And I chased it obsessively, and to no avail.

I was so focused on my scale’s digital display, that the only tools I ever turned to in my quest for health were calorie restriction and grueling workout sessions. And I was dumbfounded when none of it worked. I didn’t see the big picture. I didn’t consider that other things were arguably more important than what I was putting in my mouth, and that my crazy workout schedule was actually sabotaging my health, not improving it.

Health can mean different things to different people, but most of us would probably agree that some key components are: having energy throughout the day, lower levels of stress, and feeling happy and content most of the time. Eating whole foods and moving your body can absolutely contribute to all of those things–and I HIGHLY recommend them. But there are a few other things you might want to consider if your goal is health.

1) Get Your Sleep

Sleep is your body’s way of recuperating, and it’s especially important for healthy brain function. Getting 7-8 hours of sleep every night can sharpen your attention, improve your memory, and even help you avoid accidents. If you feel like you’re unable to focus during the day, aren’t as productive as you’d like to be, or are more forgetful than usual, getting more sleep is a great place to start. It can change everything.

2) Stop Trying To Be Perfect

Most of us know that perfection doesn’t exist, but it sure as hell doesn’t stop us from trying to achieve it. The problem is, trying to get everything right can really do a number on your overall quality of life. At best, it can lead you to procrastinate on and/or abandon tasks and projects so that you never experience satisfaction or a sense of completion; at worst it can cause you to sabotage relationships because no one can ever live up to your impossible expectations. Give yourself permission to move forward imperfectly, and know that you can always make improvements down the line.

3) Go Outside

There’s something about being outside in nature that grounds you and makes you feel more peaceful. In fact, studies show that a leisurely walk outside reduces stress, boosts your mood, builds confidence, and promotes creativity. It’s not about burning calories or counting steps; it’s about being in present time–not worrying about what happened a few minutes ago, or what will happen after lunch.

4) Treat Yourself

Treating yourself doesn’t have to be an all day affair, involve food (unless you want it to) or cost a dime. It’s all about taking a few minutes to do something that makes you feel good, and allows you to recharge. It can be as simple as curling up in your favorite chair with a glass of Pinot, or as luxurious as soaking in a tub of lavender scented Epsom salts in the middle of the day. Taking a few minutes for yourself each day is a great way to increase your level of happiness, and reduce stress like lady boss.

So, what does health look like to you? Can you relate to chasing a number on the scale as your measure of success? Hit me up in the comments–I want to hear from YOU!

Blessings, Love, & Light,

Christy

 

P.S. If you’re looking for a supportive community of women to connect with, I invite you to join my FREE, private Facebook group! I offer one on one support, and we share tips on self-care, self-love, how to have more fun, and be the happiest, hottest, healthiest version of YOU! Join us!

Happiness and Rituals

FullSizeRender (2)Does The Word ‘Ritual’ Conjure Up Images of Bizarre Religious Sects And Cultish Voodoo Practices?

It’s not exactly a neutral term in most of our minds, right? But the reality is that rituals are actually super important in cultivating happiness in our lives. They can give us a sense of certainty, purpose, and can even calm us and reduce our stress levels.

You probably perform rituals all the time without even realizing it. Maybe you make your bed every morning, or grab a cup of coffee before sitting down to check emails, or read to your kids before tucking them in at night. Each of these is a pretty basic ritual, but they allow you to know what to expect at which times, and to move through each task with relative ease.

Stress Relief and Self-Care

Purposefully creating rituals is also a great tool for self-care and relieving stress. For me, the ritual of putting on make-up helps me feel more confident and inspired. I also find that I’m more productive and experience less overwhelm on the days when I meditate first thing in the morning.

You can also use rituals to replace habits that aren’t serving you for better ones. Steve and I recently restarted The Walking Dead from the first season (we’ve become those people) and I noticed on the nights we watched, I was mindlessly snacking even though I wasn’t hungry. I’d go to bed feeling overly full and bloated, and wasn’t setting myself up for the best night’s sleep. I decided to switch things up and create a new ritual that would give me something to look forward to, and help me sleep well, so now Walking Dead = tea time…problem solved.

Rituals Are Fluid and Flexible

Another great thing about cultivating rituals to live a happier life is that their completely fluid. You’re in the driver’s seat, and you get to play around and find what things work best for you, and bring you the most joy. In fact, it’s best not to be married to a particular ritual just because it took you some time to make it stick. If it becomes monotonous, or something you feel like you have to do, it’s time to reevaluate.

What kind of rituals do you perform every day? Are there certain practices you can see yourself incorporating that might create a sense of ease? Hit me up in the comments–I’d love to hear from you!

Blessings, Love, & Light,

Christy

P.S. If you’re feeling stuck and aren’t sure what the next steps are or how to take them, I’d love to be able to help you map out a plan and support you.

CLICK HERE TO APPLY FOR A FREE CLARITY SESSION WITH ME.

You don’t need to have everything figured out in order to have this conversation. You just need to be willing to explore your next steps.