Wellbeing Tips and Techniques
When you slow down with your food you are relaxed and giving your body the best chance possible to digest, absorb and use the food you eat.
- Set the table, use nice cutlery and plates, perhaps light a candle
- Put your phones away to enjoy your meal without distraction
- Proper digestion starts in your mouth, so chew chew chew your food – upto 30 times each mouthful
- If you’ve already loaded your fork with the next bite while you are still chewing, put your cutlery down between mouthfuls
- Be conscious of how much you’re putting on your fork, don’t overload it
Water is essential in every system and function of the body: it helps take what you need from the food you eat to nourish your body, it helps the body flush waste, it helps maintain a healthy body temperature through sweat, it helps keep joints lubricated.
When you consider that our vital organs like our brain, heart, lungs are kidneys are made up of at least 75% water, it’s no surprise they need water to stay alive and functioning. And don’t forget your skin. Your skin is your largest organ and protects the body and acts as a barrier to the outside world - if you do not drink enough water, your skin will show it.
- Take your body weight in pounds and divide it in half to give you the number of ounces of water per day that you should drink; therefore if you weigh 140 pounds, you should drink at least 70 ounces of water each day
- Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink water, by the time you’re thirsty your body is already dehydrated
- Add a slice of lemon, lime or cucumber, or mint or basil if you’ve got fresh herbs
- If you’ve got a piece of fruit that’s going soft, slice it up and put it in a jug of water in the fridge
- Try sparkling water, or herbal or fruit teas
Getting enough quality sleep is crucial for our physical and mental health. The average is 8 hours but it might be anywhere between 6 and 9 depending on different factors like how old you are and how much stress you’re juggling in your life.
Amazing things happen when we’re asleep. Your brain sorts out the information from the day. Hormones get released which help your body to repair. Your immune system releases proteins to help fight inflammation and infection. Your sympathetic nervous system (which controls your fight or flight response) gets a chance to relax.
If you don’t get enough sleep, you might experience side effects like poor memory and focus, weakened immunity, mood swings, anxiety, fatigue, and weight gain.
- The best quality of sleep is between 10pm and 6am
- Keeping to the same bedtime can help regulate your body clock and could help you fall asleep and stay asleep
- Melatonin (the hormone that regulates sleep) can be disrupted by blue light emitted by screens so put your phone to one side an hour before bed
- A calming and relaxing activity like reading, meditation or a warm bath/shower before bedtime helps you move from ‘on the go’ to sleep
- Regular exercise can help contribute to improved sleep; if you prefer exercising later in the day you may want to get your workout in at least 3 hours before bedtime
- Avoid caffeinated food and drink at least 6 hours prior to bedtime
- Try not to eat just before bedtime when your digestive system is starting to slow down
Looking after yourself
In the same way as your car can’t run without fuel and your phone won’t work without a charged battery, if you’re running on empty it’s difficult to feel satisfied and to reach your goals. Instead, the danger is you can end up feeling frazzled and overwhelmed. We’re told to put our own oxygen masks on first for a reason – self-care is not about luxury, it’s a necessity.
- Reprioritise what’s on your to do list and ditch some stuff that you don’t enjoy
- What have you decided must get done, but could be swapped in favour of something that really serves you better?
- What happens if that thing doesn’t get done, or gets done less often?
- Is there someone else in the household who could do it instead?
- Be mindful and present in whatever you’re doing
- Stand in your garden and be aware of the sounds and smells
- Go for a walk and really notice what you see
- Read a chapter of that book you’ve been meaning to start
Working from home
It can be difficult to stay motivated and focused on your work, especially when you have so many distractions around you.
- Set out clear working hours, honour those dedicated working hours and learn to switch off at the end of each day
- Establishing boundaries means everyone knows when you are available so you can limit distractions and remain focused
- Whether you have a home office or a space in the corner of your kitchen, a designated area from which to work helps keep everything organised and in one place, and also helps you get in the right mindset when you are working
- Whether you decide to schedule in the evening prior or opt to set aside 5 minutes at the start of your day, scheduling your day in advance will help you stay organised and on top of your priorities, as well as highlighting what you need to be focusing on at any one time
- Your concentration levels naturally decrease the longer you work without a break so do yourself a favour and take regular breaks from your desk; get outside or just spend 5 minutes getting a glass of water – it will help your levels of focus and concentration no end
Joy Whitehead FdSc BA(Hons) MBACP, Complete Therapy
firstname.lastname@example.org; 01733 284048 / 07773 879410; www.counselling-peterborough.co.uk; www.complete-therapy.com
Jo Woods, Shine Coaching.
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jowoodscoach/; email@example.com; 07810 764083