1. Drink more water:
This isn’t easy for everyone; it sure wasn’t easy for me starting out. The thing to know is that the brain’s signal for hunger and thirst are the same. How many times you felt snacky but that doesn’t do it? I bet you were thirsty and didn’t know it. Try drinking a full glass and see if you are still hungry, or if it really was thirst.
The way I drink more water is flavor enhancers. Mio Liquid, Crystal Light, or any other similar product. Crystal Light has a gritty texture that is hard to dissolve sometimes and anyone with Aspartame issues should avoid it. Mios have several flavors: Black Cherry (an energy boost enhancer, I only use in the AM); Orange; Fruit Punch; Sweet Tea; Lemonade; Peach Tea. Granted, Mios are more expensive but the flavors can’t be beat. I know that Walmart also have their own spin offs so you might find something that doesn’t pinch the budget.
There are several sites dedicated to telling you how much water to drink: 8-10 cups (64oz/80oz) all the way to your weight divided by 2 = how many oz you should drink. If you aren’t a water drinker stick with a simple 8 cups. Yes, you will start hitting the restroom more often but that evens out over time. As you gain a taste for water you will discover you will feel a “craving” for it.
For the record, on Non-Run days I avg. 8 cups, but Run-Days I power through 8 cups by 10am to be hydrated for my afternoon run. I total 11+ cups by day’s end. That’s just me.
2. Smaller dishes:
This was originally a joke on my Dad years ago. Mom had the dish set where there was a “dinner plate” and a “salad/lunch plate” that was about 20% smaller. I had just begun to learn about food proportions and, to be silly; I hid the dinner places in the island.
He didn’t notice it for 2 weeks. Mom and I still laugh about it.
However, to my surprise, my parents kept the change and now the “dinner” plates only appear during Thanksgiving and Christmas. So with less surface area to put food on, portion sizes shrink just a bit without realizing it.
3. To Go boxes with the meal:
No matter how healthy I may eat there is always the “out to eat” factor especially when I am visiting my folks. Don’t get me wrong I LOVE eating out but the proportions you get is enormous!
So I have developed the habit of asking for a to-go box to come with my meal. That way as soon as I get my plate, half of it goes into the box for lunch the next day or maybe even dinner a few hours later. That way I can still enjoy eating out, control how much I put in and have leftovers for another meal. Now, I use to just half everything and say ‘this is for later” but for anyone who ‘claimed’ that how many of us nibbled a bit more because we ‘had room’. Yes, I see the hands…I’m guilty too. So just be smart and get the box first.
4. Take the farther parking spot:
I have serious concerns that the human race will one day end up like the people on the Axiom ship in WALL-E. All fat and no bones.
People! We have legs; now whether a Divine being gave them to us or the fishies million of years ago is irrelevant. Point is, we have them. We need to use them. We don’t need to circle parking lots like blood crazed sharks. In the time you do that you could be in the store already having walked just an extra few yards. No jogging even necessary.
My Dad is 78 and still walks 18 holes of golf twice a week, weather permitting. He always keeps telling me “A body at rest stays at rest. A body in motion tends to stay in motion.” Most of his friends aren’t active and we have watched their health decline and see them pass away 20 years younger than him usually bedridden and miserable.
I think he’s onto something…I also think he got the saying from a commercial (doubt he knows laws physics) but I keep my mouth shut 😉
5. Working out is optional, walking isn’t:
You don’t have to own a gym membership. You don’t have to have a bow flex at home. You don’t have to do the dreaded push ups, sit ups or crunches.
All you have to do is walk.
Walk at a park. Walk at the city gardens. Walk the mall (they are one big track after all). If there is a school nearby you might be able to use their track.
Walking is a simple task that we do all the time but usually too focused on our daily To Do Lists to even give it another thought. I would suggest you get a simple pedometer and you will be surprised to see how many miles you walk already.
I also suggest walking at a park or garden because it is a calming action. For me, it’s a natural de-stressor and one way I meditate and calm my head (more on this lifestyle technique later).
So go for a walk today even if it’s for 10 minutes.
6. Change your Music, change your mindset:
I admit in my old car I was a speed demon and a bit aggressive on the highways. I rarely honked but my windshield saw a lot of bad words. Add alternative metal music or some other fast pace pop song and just watch for me to snarl at the next butt who cuts me off.
I also use different songs to create with either when I am painting or writing fiction. Different songs produce different “visuals” and depending on what I am writing at that moment I listen to certain songs on loop. After all, you don’t see Baroque period classical music featured in…say…Fast and Furious movies? I have yet to see Polka music in a love scene (I hate Polka).
So think about the music you listen to on a regular basis. Is it hard edge alterative? Classical? Oldies? How do you feel when you listen to your different genres?
I grew up on Golden Oldies; then Country; then Alternative Country; Rock, Pop, Alterative rock. Recently I discovered Pandora and their New Age station. I began listening to more instrumental genres at work and less “strong emotional” music.
In my new car I drive to work early in the morning and I listen to my loud mix of Pop, rock, and country. But driving home- classical all the way, even when my butt is being passed on the highway. The Prius has seen many a Bird being flipped.
I feel more grounded and calm when I listen to the easy listening music. I have lowered blood pressure and my stress levels at work- where we are consolidating space, downsizing and changing to an assembly-only plant…as a contract worker my future usually stands on a razor’s edge, even though I have been here over a year now.
That situation used to scare the crud out of me but now…ehh whatever- whatever happens, happens.
So if you are feeling stressed, out of sorts, anxious etc. all the time- consider what you are listening to or maybe lack there of? At best this could help you relax at worse- you might find a song or too that drives you nuts.
7. No Procrastination:
We can all admit to having senioritis and putting off homework to the very last minute. I was so busy during my last year of college I literally had plan when I was going to eat lunch and get homework done. That has still hung over to my professional life and personal traits.
Every evening I write my planner for the next day- Work, errands, any creative projects I have in progress (right now I have a big painting and need to start my Xmas shopping! ACK!), I try to make sure I have my runs planned and make time for meditation and writing…
One Busy Bee here!
So I don’t procrastinate. I get my stuff done- BAM BAM BAM. Only then do I relax with whatever extra time I have.
I also multitask. For instance- I am currently at work writing this article in Word document while I wait for my shipment files to get emailed here. I am also formatting another article on my running gear so I just have to get pictures and plug in.
So use your time wisely, get it done and then you can relax and bask in your accomplishments instead of being lazy and then going “Oh shit!” and then run around like a chicken being chased by a fat man with an ax mumbling about chicken and rice.
8. Gratitude Journal:
Now I know this one sounds corny. You can laugh at me, its okay. The reason why I added this is because I went through therapy for a mild case of depression and a hell of a mental conditioning cycle after leaving an abusive relationship.
One thing that I began doing is saying what I was thankful for everyday.
I don’t mean just the usual family and friends- I mean ‘walking to class listening to some smoothing music and seeing a pretty butterfly.’
The littlest things we never stop and see. Simple pleasures. Moments of time and space that is solely ours and contains microscopic events that give us joy.
~Seeing a child smile and wave at us.
~Little birds dancing about.
~How good that Starbucks coffee tastes.
~Curling up on the couch and when you turn on the TV it’s the show you were thinking about.
When I was lowest I was just frickin thankful I got my laundry done. Then I began being thankful for these little things and for when things work out well for me. Getting a great job; seeing old friends from college; an indulgent dessert.
Slowly I began being thankful for me. Thankful for my progress in healing. Thankful for the new “See positivism everywhere” mindset I created- knowing it was key in ridding me of the horrible negative conditioning my ex had done.
I use to write my thankfuls down in an actual journal but now I just say thank you to my chosen form of Divinity for these precious moments.
Years later I can confidently say I am now a happy ball of energy and people have a knack for seeking me out when they need a pick-me-up. Yep, I’m that person now.
If you can’t find some humor in everything you are just a lost cause. There is a reason Funniest Home Videos is still running! 🙂 Laughter does cure many things. I have been known to have a weepy galpal in my arms for a few minutes then she’ll be giggling.
Whatever makes you laugh- have some everyday in moderation (I know HALF of you just thought of your favorite cocktail!!!) As long as no else gets hurt, yourself included, its good!
Have you laughed today?
10. Set your goals and work to them!
I am a HUGE fan of Leonie Dawson of Goddess Guide Book. She is a down to earth Aussie hippy with so much positive energy pouring out of her she created inspirational, empowering classes, videos, blogs and turned her passion for helping others grow in their spiritual and true selves that she turned it into a business.
Even with the world economy as it is- she turned helping people into a business that makes enough to keep her family 100 times over. She has an outlet for her creativity and the happy homelife anyone could envy.
Man, that sounds so much better than cubicle land and rush hour traffic.
My dream is to hopefully turn this blog into a site where I can use my life coaching, creativity, passions and writing to help inspire people to set their goals and work towards them. I was to see people grow from the media ‘sheeple’ into enlightened empowered beings. I would love to connect with other women for are trying to change their lives into a strong powerful force –whether its to be healthy, lose weight, or just get rid of negative thinking so they can accomplish their goals and dreams.
Things in the USA are very unsteady and even my current job might not last. Can I reach my goal right now and blog full time? I wish. Right now I am in cubicle land and that’s okay for now.
But you can bet I will get my goal. I will have my dream job and the happy lifestyle I have been working hard for. It all takes sweat, tears and some blood.
But if I can get started than you have no excuse. Start by writing out what you truly want out of life for yourself and for your family. Then figure out what you need tools, experience, etc. to obtain it.
There…you took the first step! 🙂 YAY! CONGRATS!
Secret of Life is there is no secret- and you don’t get your money back.