10 Simple Habits for a Happier Healthier You
After I had my third baby, I struggled to find a healthy lifestyle that I could sustain. I was juggling a new life with 3 kids and didn’t know where to start. I started incorporating a few easy habits over the course of a few months and they all started adding up. I eventually built a sustainable lifestyle that incorporates these 10 simply habits that made me happier and healthier mom.
I am so passionate about each of these things. I feel like I could write so much about each and everyone one of these habits and beliefs (watch out! there might a blog post for each of them soon!). Some are broad and some are very specific but they all are simple concepts that will vastly improve how you live and how you feel about yourself. Start small and incorporate one new habit at a time over the course of a few weeks.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #1: Make Your Bed Every Morning
Yep, that’s right. This probably isn’t one you thought would be at the top of the list but it is. Making your bed every morning helps set a positive tone to your day. Not only will it help you keep the rest of your room clean, it will help you keep other parts of your life in order as well. It will help you stay motivated to complete other tasks in your day with confidence.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #2: Drink Lots of Water
Staying hydrated is key to your health. It helps you stay more full, it gives your skin an extra glow, gives your more energy and it’s vital for your body to function at its best. It also helps to curb your appetite. If you start to feel hungry, try drinking a full glass of water first, wait for 30 minutes and see how you feel. Wake up and drink a glass before you do anything else and shoot for drinking at least half your body weight in ounces each day.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #3: Get Enough Sleep
Get enough rest to let your body recharge and reset. Sleep helps to keep your cortisol levels lower and your hormones in check. If you’re exhausted, you’re more prone to making unhealthy choices. Try getting at least 7-9 hours of sleep each night. If you have problems falling asleep in the evenings, try putting your phone down, turn your TV off and read a book or journal about your day instead.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #4: Fuel Your Body With Real Food
Your body needs whole, nutrient-dense food to function at its best and stay lean. Eating nourishing carbohydrates, fats, and proteins from healthy plant-based and/or plant-based sources will keep your appetite in check and give you more energy. Try cook more at home and explore different types of foods and cooking techniques. When you have a love for putting your meal together, you will feel a difference in the food you eat.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #5: Limit Caffeine
While some caffeine can help increase your focus and athletic performance, too much can increase anxiety, interfere with your sleep and disrupt your digestive tract. Consider making changes to get more sleep at night or changing your eating habits if you’re constantly exhausted throughout the day. If you’re currently drinking a lot of caffeine, try gradually decreasing your intake to see how you feel. You might be surprised with how you feel reducing or cutting it out completely!
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #6: Get Up and Move
Moving your body can help relieve stress, burn extra calories, and boost your metabolism. It improves your confidence and gives you a burst of energy. If you’re not exercising much already, try finding an activity you enjoy and do it a few times a week initially. It can be a walk outside, a bike ride, or a yoga class — whatever sounds appealing to you. If you’re already working out but doing a lot of the same thing, trying changing things up a bit. Add in a different kind of class or just get out and walk a bit if you’re inside all of the time.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #7: Take Time For You
Self-care is participating in something that nurtures and refuels you and it’s important for your overall health and wellness . Self-care is important to consider emotionally, physically, spiritually, and with respect to your relationship with yourself and others. Check in with yourself and determine which areas you need to focus on and make a plan to practice self-care in those areas every week.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #8: Find What Works for You
Everyone’s body is different. What works for one person, might not work for another. There’s no one size fits all approach to nutrition. Experiment with different ways of eating. See how certain foods affect you and make decisions based on what’s good for your body, not what a specific diet program recommends. Also, your body changes over time so continue to listen to it and make changes if you need to.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #9: Give Yourself Grace
You’re going to have good days and bad days and you need to give yourself grace along the way. You will make bad decisions everyone once in a while. You might venture back to old habits here and there and that’s okay. If you make a bad decision, don’t beat yourself up forever about it and feel like a failure. Acknowledge what happen, accept it and move on. Just make the next best decision and keep moving forward. If you eat some Doritos, eat them and let that be it. Don’t throw in the towel the rest of the day and eat chocolate cake, pizza, and wine. The day becomes a week and a week becomes a month. Focus on making progressing instead of being perfect. Balance and grace is key for long term health success.
Simple Habit for a Healthier Happier You #10: Surround Yourself with Those Who Support You
We all need some sort of support system in our life. There’s a great sense of comfort know you have people who will listen to you, offer advice, and lift you up. Make sure you consider those people currently in your life and how they support you. Re-evaluate who you’re currently surrounding yourself with and make sure they provide a positive impact on your life. If you need to broaden your support network, seek out new relationships with those who share your core beliefs and leave you feeling good about yourself.
If you’re ready to focus on a more sustainable lifestyle by focusing on eating whole, nutritious food, download my free 7 Day Clean Eating Meal Plan.
Ashley Lillis is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach dedicated to helping women find their own version of healthy through sustainable lifestyle changes.