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How To Improve Your Physical Appearance Through Diet And Exercise

How To Improve Your Physical Appearance Through Diet And Exercise

Getting fit and improving your physical appearance doesn’t have to be complicated, but it is not achieved overnight. There are solutions to get in shape and regain your youthful vigor through diet, exercise, and sleep and relaxation. You don’t even have to join a gym or spend a ton of money!

Exercise

Exercise encourages muscle strength and provides additional support to your organs by encouraging overall blood circulation. There are various exercises that can be done to also improve your appearance. For example, if you want to tone your arms, abs, and thighs, you can perform a variety of strength training exercises. Bicep curls are recommended to tone the upper arm area. Exercising with a stability ball is highly recommended for arm and chest strengthening. Namely, for many women, the upper thigh area can be a bit saggy. To achieve toned thighs including a more toned rear, aerobic exercises such as walking, biking, dancing, kickboxing, and swimming are recommended.

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Another part of the body that is often overlooked when exercising is the shoulders. Your shoulder’s health, strength, and stability are maintained by exercising the muscles surrounding it. This can be achieved by doing shoulder workouts such as pushups or dumbbell lifts.

Food and Vitamins

The foods you choose to consume are very important in maintaining not only your health, but your overall physical appearance. Food encourages health from the inside by nourishing organs and providing nutrients to them. In addition, a combination of nutrient-rich foods and vitamins and minerals are necessary for radiant, healthy hair growth. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, biotin, iron, vitamin-C, and protein play a significant role in promoting healthy hair growth and improving other bodily functions.

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  • Fish, eggs, avocado, and nuts are excellent sources of fatty acids (provide energy, transport oxygen throughout the body, improve brain function, etc.).
  • Biotin is a B-vitamin (needed for healthy skin, hair, eyes, and liver) which can be consumed by eating nuts, oatmeal, and other healthy grains.
  • You can obtain iron (an essential element for blood production) from leafy green vegetables such as kale and spinach, nuts, and berries. Iron is best absorbed when vitamin-C is highly present in the body.
  • Foods rich in Vitamin-C (needed for the growth and repair of tissues) include citrus, bell peppers, and tomatoes.
  • Protein (required for the structure, regulation, and function of the body’s tissue) can be obtained from lean meats, beans, cheese, and seeds.

Beautiful Skin

Besides your face and hair, your skin is the most noticed part of the body. It is vital to ensure your skin stands out and showcases its healthy, beautiful characteristics. To do this, exercise is important. Exercise affords you the benefits of glowing and toned skin after a workout. It also strengthens and tones the muscles, and helps rids your pores of nasty bacteria and toxins.

Rest and Relaxation

Getting the right amount of sleep is critical in healing tired and sore muscles after exercising. Sleep is also useful in reducing anxiety and emotions such as depression.

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Intangible Benefits

Exercise can also boost physical appearance in intangible ways. Others will notice your confidence as you stroll along with more pep in your step. You can walk into a room knowing that you look good and be the envy of the social scene. You’ll also be more pleased with the person who is looking back at you from the reflection in the mirror.

Another intangible benefit to exercise, but positively impactful on your physical appearance, is the reduction of stress. Stress is mostly felt from the inside, but there are instances when others will recognize this from your facial expressions. Exercise can release stress hormones by circulating blood throughout the body.

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There are also opportunities to improve your appearance by meditating, hitting the sauna, getting a massage, and healing your mind through other relaxation techniques.

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Sasha Brown

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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