In many ways, making a significant healthy lifestyle change is about connecting with yourself. It is acknowledging that you are not at your best and need to make significant and dedicated efforts to live authentically. You may need to work on everything from your self-esteem to your sleep.
Low self-esteem makes you unwilling to give yourself a better life, better food, better rest because you do not feel like you deserve comfort and ease. Bad sleep makes you irritable, unable to concentrate, and keeps you from thinking rationally. Finding a way to gain confidence and further, making the investment in a bed that is designed to heal your core body temperature circadian rhythm will change your life significantly for the better. You will begin to think impartially about yourself and your needs and be better equipped to make the changes necessary to live a better lifestyle.
Physical changes are the easiest in some ways. The right bed, the right clothes, healthier food, and more hydration will be key to improving your overall physical wellness. It can also stimulate a better mindset so you can begin working on your emotional wellness as well. Start by adjusting the way you talk to and about yourself.
Negative self-talk can be very toxic and damaging. Be kinder with your words when talking about yourself, when dealing with a mistake, and avoid jumping at opportunities to make self-deprecating jokes. Be your friend.
Volunteer your time to a good cause and make an effort to participate in community activities every week. This is a significant amount of time to devote and may require some rescheduling of your days. Alternatively, if you have been depressed for a while, it will require you to finally break up the monotony of your days and be connected to something larger than yourself.
Seeing the direct positive results of your actions will have a healing effect on your mind. You will be able to see that you have the capacity and ability to be selfless. Feeling like a necessary cog in the community will do wonders for your self-esteem as well. In addition, it will be harder for the voice in your head to put you down when you can see that you are so much more than the sum of your worst thoughts.
Build Yourself Up
Start celebrating your own accomplishments publicly. Make a group with your friends on a social media site and begin sharing your personal daily wins with them. Encourage them to do the same. It does not have to be huge accomplishments like a promotion or purchasing a car. Making the perfect coffee, getting the laundry done and folded in one day, meeting your step goal for the week are all accomplishments you can share with your friends. They will share similar successes and you can all give each other positive feedback, tips, ideas, and most of all, build up each other self-esteem and self-love.
Helping your personal group of friends and family to feel more connected and loving will be a huge boost to your self-worth as well. You will be supporting the people you love in a real and actionable manner while providing yourself with the support you need. In addition, by focusing your need for validation on a select group of people who love you, you will eliminate the chances of a mean comment that derails your mental train.
You do not need to join a gym or get a personal trainer. This can be expensive and further expenses if your finances are low will only stress you out more. But, your body is not designed to be stagnant at all times.
The human body needs movement and action and it reacts very positively to consistent exercise. Begin slowly by taking a walk every other day. Increase the frequency of these walks and then the distance over time. It is a great idea to go with a friend or with your family as this can be a great bonding moment.
Walking in the early or late evening can be a great way to build up an appetite and drain off your nervous energy or adrenaline your kids may have. This will make everyone eat better at dinner time and start winding down for sleep in a more structured manner.
The structure and discipline of continuing these walks and building up the enjoyment of the exertion will give you a positive effect both mentally and physically. Seeing how it benefits your family will also do a lot for your self-esteem and feelings of adequacy as a parent and partner. Knowing that we are the right person for the people we love is often a major factor in our level of happiness in our lives.
Re-framing your thoughts can have a clear benefit for your lifestyle and self-esteem. But many people do not know how to break out of the negative self-talk habit. A good way to start is to ask questions that are positive and not focused on negativity.
If you find yourself looking in the mirror and asking yourself, “Why am I so fat?”, take a breath and ask yourself a question that is focused on the good that your body does for you. “How will my body help me reach my goals today?” or “What can I do to feel happier with my body?”
These questions focus on the fact that your body is your partner in living your best life. The first question acknowledges that the body you have allows you to do everything you want to do. That is a reason to celebrate your body. The second question makes you think about ways to help yourself feel healthier in your body. You can eat better, work out, get stronger, or even focus entirely on working out your internalized biases about size. This will help you to adjust the way you think to be healthier and more positive.