You made it to February 2022. In whatever state you are, you made it and that deserves to be celebrated. Whether you are fit and healthy, overweight, in pain, depressed or living with a chronic or even terminal disease, you can live each day in a state of wellness and joy.
Disclaimer: you must check with a health professional before you adopt any suggestions in this article.
Now let’s get into it. You may think, how can I be unwell and be well at the same time. It is in understanding what wellness is. It is steeped in ancient history back to the 2nd century and the work of Galen, a physician, surgeon and philosopher who believed that health was more than physical.
There are various definitions of wellness but one which encompasses the idea is by the Global Wellness institute which defines wellness as “the active pursuit of activities, choices and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health.” This means there is no age limit to begin the practice of wellness.
One of the most significant influences on our health is chronic stress and this is the one I would ask you to change as you ride 2022. Stress is the response you have to help you cope with the normal demands of life, where this is prolonged without the opportunity for your body to recover, it becomes dangerous. This can lead to unhealthy food choices and lifestyles. There is a strong correlation between stress and the development of disease.
To live a life that is full, enjoyable, happy and healthy, you must:
Identify the cause of chronic stress in your life: most people know the issues of life that cause them stress. What or who keeps you awake, sad or anxious? It is important to be clear. While you may have many stressors, there is usually one or two that causes you to be in a prolonged state of fight or flight. Your first exercise is to get your journal and list out the sources of stress in your life and grade them in order of severity.
Decide on a strategy to tackle the source of your stress: I believe that it is not the stress that must change, it is you who must change. No matter what the issue is that you are dealing with until you change yourself and your strategy, the problem will not go away. How will you change your approach, your viewpoint, your habits? Will you speak to a professional or a trusted friend?
Adopt a routine: there is immense power in finding a daily routine and sticking with it. There are few things that impact our creativity, career, productivity and happiness. I am yet to see any book, podcast, blog on wellness that does not put routines front and center. You may think you do not have a routine but you do. Research shows that up to 40% of our daily actions are powered by habits. You have a choice to help your routine work for you or against you.
- Start or finish the day with journaling. Write down your intentions, what you are grateful for and how you feel. You can use our journal available via this link https://www.dr-simi.com/shop/optimising-your-mental-health/. There is clear evidence between journaling and wellness. You can use your journal to identify the cause of chronic stress in your life and to plan your strategy.
- Meditate on your intentions. Take a moment to be still and set your intentions before you. You can use guided meditation and there are various tools available. Share this article and tag us for recommendations.
- Exercise daily: I believe in daily exercise no matter how little. Add walking or jogging a few times a week. The best time to exercise is determined by you but make sure it is at the same time every day. Personally, I prefer to follow my routine in the morning. There are so many exercises you can do but a mix of cardio (where your heart beats very fast at least 3 times faster than usual) and strength training to build your muscles and bones. Adapt your exercise depending on your health and ability.
Every day is a gift so you must be grateful and approach it in the best way possible. In 2022, eliminate chronic stress from your life, guard your peace jealously to put yourself in the optimal state to achieve your goals. The possibilities are endless. If you seek, you will find. You deserve a life full of energy, vitality, happiness even in the presence of disease. You are not too young to start your journey today. Feel free to book an initial consultation, you can message Dr Simi™️ on WhatsApp. https://wa.me/message/GKONHCNUJVJLJ1 with me.
Dr Simisola Alabi MBBS MRCGP MSc Health Policy DFSRH DRCOG PgCert Med Ed.
CEO Dr Simi ™️
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