The past few years have seen a lot of change in the world, and it’s easy to get swept up and overwhelmed. With the ever-intense political climate, personal commitments and the day-to-day hustle, staying healthy and happy in 2018 should be at the top of everyone’s to-do list.
Don’t worry; you don’t have to drop everything and head for a wilderness retreat to find some Zen in your life. These five lifestyle trends are easy to try and adjust to your own schedule and preferences. Are you ready to capture the everyday kind of happy?
Mindfulness is thousands of years old, but it’s still relatively misunderstood by the general public. There’s been a surge of mindfulness movements and practices lately, but some might still think it’s only for people who can sit cross-legged for hours at a stretch. While meditation can do wonders for the mind and soul, mindfulness can be practiced anywhere, anytime. You can be mindful while making a cup of tea, taking a shower, exercising, or even falling asleep.
Mindfulness is all about living in the here and now, feeling rather than thinking, and naturally deriving contentment by truly experiencing life. You can learn more about the basics of being mindful and incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine at mindful.org.
2. Going Green in Your Diet
You’ve probably noticed the increase in organic products at your supermarket. Vegan, vegetarian and paleo diets are attracting more people every day. While you may not want to take meat off the table, you can still start to eat healthier, fresher foods.
Look into grass-fed, organic meats. Or try meat substitutes like seitan, which is rich in protein and packs just as much flavor and texture as chicken or beef. You can also make an effort to cut back on the sugar by skipping the coffee creamer or ordering your Starbucks latte unsweetened.
3. Screen Detox
You’ve surely heard about the harmful ways too much blue light can impact your sleep, but that isn’t the only reason you should consider cutting back your screen time. It’s easy to become discontent and even depressed when you live in an endless cycle of tapping and swiping.
Start by taking your mornings for yourself. Read emails when you get to the office, not while you’re still in bed or hunched in front of the coffee pot. Turn off the TV and put your laptop away an hour before bedtime. You can dedicate those 60 minutes to reading, going to a yoga class, or even just resting quietly. Little by little, you can filter out the unnecessary screen time and start to be more active and engaged in your life.
4. Get Outside
Save your money on a gym membership in the warmer months by taking your cardio outdoors. Spending just 5 minutes a day outside has been proven to boost your mood. Head to the park, do some yoga in the backyard, take the dog out for a run or even make a weekend out of staying fit outdoors by going for a hike.
5. Power Up with Superfoods
Jackfruit has become a staple in vegan diets as a meat substitute, but there are plenty of other superfoods that are bursting with vitamins and nutrients for you to up your diet. Monk fruit can be a great alternative sweetener, and goji berries are full of antioxidants with anti-inflammatory qualities.
Happiness and wellness go hand-in-hand. Sometimes, we have to turn our focus to our bodies in order to care for our minds. Do some self-assessment and figure out where you’d like to improve the most. Then, take the first step today in living truer to your ideal self. It may be something as small as skipping a trip to the vending machine this afternoon, but it counts.
Every step forward is a step toward a healthier, happier you.