Choice – a simple word that makes a huge difference. The quality of your life today is a sum-total of the choices you made in the past. You can decide to live a healthier and happier life beginning today by making some simple adjustments. Here are some 10 ideas you can try to drastically improve your life:
1. Eat breakfast
You have probably heard it said before - breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Unfortunately, we are often in such a big rush in the mornings that skipping breakfast is the norm. The importance of breakfast cannot be overemphasized. Not only does a good breakfast boost your metabolism but it also helps curb your appetite the whole day. It pays to set your alarm clock 20-30 minutes earlier to allow a couple of minutes to eat breakfast before you get on with the hustle and bustles of life.
2. Get out more often
The digital craze has succeeded in disconnecting us from nature. We spend too much time in our offices and hurry back home when the day is done. As we spend more time in the concrete jungle trying to make ends meet, we often forget the importance of relaxing in nature. Studies have shown that outdoor walks in parks make people happier than indoor walks. Spending time in nature is a great way of reducing stress, releasing your creative juices, enhancing your memory, and ultimately making you not only healthier but happier as well.
However busy you are, make some time for regular exercise or engage in other recreational activities that make you sweat. Sweat may be smelly but it is very healthy. Sweat glands usually produce an antibody called dermcidin, which helps fight germs. Sweating also increases the lifespan of kidneys since it limits the accumulation of salts. Another benefit of sweating is that it boosts endorphine levels, which in turn makes you happier.
4. Spend time with family and friends
Gilbert Daniel, a happiness expert from Harvard, observes that spending time with friends and family is the most important facet in happiness. Experts believe that the lack of social connectedness directly leads to a drop in IQ and also results in premature death just as much as some risky lifestyle behaviours like smoking do. The longest living people the world over have one thing in common- they are very close to their friends and family. Improve your social skills to increase the quality of your life!
5. Sleep enough
Working hard is fine but getting enough sleep is just as important. It is almost impossible to be happy when you are sleep deprived. Sleeping on it might be interpreted as indecision in some quarters but it actually enhances decision making. Beauty sleep is not just a cliché – there is a direct relationship between enough sleep and a healthier you. Sleep helps boost your immunity, increases your creativity, and reduces your stress levels thereby making you happier.
6. Laugh more
Yes, laughter is still the best medicine. It is the easiest and cheapest antidote for stress. Furthermore, using laughter to cope with stress has been known to boost immunity, reduce the likelihood of suffering from stroke or heart attack, and generally increase your lifespan. Reminiscing funny moments or watching something humorous can therefore help improve your quality of life.
7. Maintaining positivity
It is said that life is 10% what we make it and 90% how we take it. How we respond to challenges that life throws our way determines whether we will be happy or not. Contrary to common belief, you can choose whether to be an optimist or a pessimist. Optimism is an attitude that can be acquired or lost at will. That is why optimism is taught in the army to help soldiers increase mental toughness. If you want to live a healthier and happier life, you must decide to maintain positivity in the face of adversity.
It’s okay to indulge every now and then. Get a day off and do something you love – like going to the spa, eating a generous slice of cake or pizza, eating ice-cream or going on vacation. What is the use of working hard if you cannot reward yourself?
9. Read before you sleep
As simple as it sounds, starting a good bedtime ritual like reading can greatly improve your health and happiness. Instead of watching TV just before you sleep, spend approximately an hour reading inspirational books or any other literature of interest. If you are not big on reading, get a good pod cast you can listen to instead. This will help improve your sleep which means you will wake up revitalized and ready for the day.
10. Cook more
Cooking more means you will eat healthier home-made foods as opposed to relying on the greasy and often unhealthy foods served at your favourite diner. Eating healthy food is the best way to ensure good health and good health is fundamental to general happiness.
So there you have it - the 10 things you should do daily for a healthier and happier life. Start today and watch your life transform for the better!