By Jenna Cutler
Improving physical health has never been more encouraged! From HIIT workouts to detox recipes, our fitness-focused society provides diverse methods to help us achieve our idealized body types or cholesterol levels. But what about our minds?
Healthy exercise and diet help enhance mood and cognition, although people often neglect their mental health when preoccupied with reaching physical health goals. However, mental health and physical health require equal amounts of attention.
The World Health Organization defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” More importantly, they state that “there is no health without mental health.” Your mental health significantly impacts your physical health and vice versa. So in order to attain overall health, it is crucial to exercise and nourish your mind the same way you would your body.
Ways to practice self-care in addition to nourishment and movement:
1. Create a Morning Routine:
From the moment you wake up, your brain is reminded of all the things you have to get done that day. But having a set of basic rituals you perform before your day’s main activity like school or work will help center you and allow you to peacefully and productively go about your day. Your routine doesn’t have to be overly long or detailed. Rituals can be as simple as sitting down for 10 minutes with your coffee and breakfast or listening to your favorite music or podcast as you get ready.
Writing down your thoughts is an incredible way to reduce stress, work through emotions, boost memory, and even improve immune functioning. It may feel intimidating to start, but you don’t have to worry about having perfect handwriting or punctuation. Just write and release anything that comes to mind without censoring yourself.
Meditation provides various techniques that help us connect to our innermost self and reach an altered state of consciousness. These techniques range from practices of concentration, breath manipulation, mantra (repeated word or sound), and intentional movement like yoga. Meditation has been proven to reduce anxiety and depression, promote better sleep, relieve pain, and improve cardiovascular health.
In our productivity-driven society, it is crucial to prioritize our mental health and show up for ourselves daily. Self-care does not make you lazy or egocentric, rather, it is the foundation for achieving both individual and interpersonal health, wellness, and success.
At NextGeneration Nutrition, we strive to help you reach your full potential through not only good nutrition and physical activity, but through positive lifestyle choices as well!
Jessica Mantell M.S., C.N.S., L.D.N.
CEO & Founder of NextGeneration Nutrition
NextGeneration Nutrition believes that better health should be accessible to everyone and that we all are able to improve our health through good nutrition, physical activity, and lifestyle change. We do not support setting shame-based goals but encourages embracing our bodies, genetics, and personality. Our philosophy is abandoning the “One Size Fits All” mentality to create a personalized wellness plan based on your biological makeup and your lifestyle.
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