Advertising
Advertising

25 Simple Habits Anyone Can Take Up To Live A Healthy Life

25 Simple Habits Anyone Can Take Up To Live A Healthy Life

More than 40 percent of the actions you take every day are based on habits. Unfortunately, a good portion of those habits are bad ones for most of us. Smoking. Drinking. Eating like crap.

You get the drift.

Change your habits, and you’ll unlock the key to a healthy life. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Eat home-cooked meals.

Eating out is one of the biggest sources of unhealthy foods in our diets. Stay home and cook a healthy meal instead.

Drink a smoothie every day.

Here’s an easy habit that will help you get 2-3 more servings of fruits and veggies a day: mix up a healthy smoothie for breakfast every morning or after a workout. And toss in a handful of greens for an extra kick of vitamins and nutrients (you won’t even taste them).

Carry a water bottle wherever you go.

Water helps flush your body of toxins and carries essential nutrients to your cells. Buy the biggest bottle you can find and aim to drink two or three of them each day.

Advertising

Do body weight exercises.

Push-ups, squats, pull-ups, and lunges are among the best total body exercises for a quick and effective workout.

Take fruits to work.

Skip the trip to the vending machine. Bring a piece of fruit and some nuts as a snack instead.

Plan your action items for each day.

Planning goes a long way toward helping you achieve your goals, form good habits, and live a healthy life.

Find an exercise that you enjoy.

The best exercise advice I ever got about fitness was this: find something you love doing. Whether it’s yoga, boxing, swimming, or playing basketball, pick an activity you really like and start doing it several times per week.

Floss every day.

Flossing has a number of health benefits you may not even be aware of. Here’s one: it’s actually good for your heart.

Smile and laugh whenever possible.

Make an effort to smile and laugh more. Choose to be happy now.

Advertising

Stretch during commercials while you’re watching TV.

Commercials are a great opportunity to get up and move around a bit. Stretch tight muscles or do some body weight exercises like squats or push-ups.

Use chopsticks to eat slower.

Eating mindlessly is one of the most detrimental habits to your health. Grab a pair of chopsticks and you’ll eat your food much slower.

Exercise with a friend.

Working out with a friend is a great idea because he/she will help hold you accountable and motivate you when you feel like sitting on the couch instead.

Call a different person you haven’t talk to in a while at least once a week.

One of the most important things you can do to live a healthy life is keep in touch with the people you love. Call a friend or family member you haven’t talked to in a while every week. You’ll be glad you did.

Mix in whole grains, lean protein and healthy fats to your meals.

Eating healthy is easier than you think. Here’s a simple rule to follow: if it doesn’t come from nature, limit how much you eat. Eat more real foods like whole grains (oatmeal, popcorn, etc.), lean proteins (fish, turkey, chicken), and healthy fats (olive oil, nuts, avocados).

Take a break every hour at work and do a lap around the office or stretch out.

Sitting down all day is terrible for your health. So get up and move. Take a stroll around your office and take regular stretching breaks. Your body will thank you.

Advertising

Bike to work once a week.

This one may not be reasonable for everyone but biking to work just once a week is an amazing way to get some extra exercise, enjoy the outdoors, and live a healthier life.

Do housekeeping yourself.

Sometimes doing chores stinks. But you can burn serious calories doing everyday housework–around 225 an hour on average.

Park farther away.

While I’ll be the first to admit getting the first spot is one of the great joys in life, try making a habit of parking farther away. Those extra steps add up.

Do something nice for a total stranger.

One of the easiest ways to improve your life and someone else’s is to do something nice for a complete stranger. Try it today and see how good it makes you feel.

Fill half your dinner plate with vegetables.

This advice from the USDA is simple and an easy habit you can implement to live a healthy life.

Pack your lunch.

Going out to lunch every day puts a damper on your health and your wallet. So start packing your lunch instead and save money and calories.

Advertising

Read something uplifting every day.

Your attitude and emotions are important factors in whether or not you experience a life filled with health and happiness. So read something inspiring every day.

Eat out selectively.

The average restaurant meal has 1,128 calories. That alone should be incentive to be very selective about how much you go out to eat.

Have a weekly meal schedule.

Planning your meals goes a long way toward developing healthier eating habits.

Do 5 minutes of exercise every day.

Look, we’re all busy. But even the busiest among us has 5 minutes a day to spare. You have 1,440 minutes available in each day. Commit to spending just 5 of those every day on exercise. The point is to develop the habit of exercising, so it becomes routine.

And that should be your goal: to cultivate habits so you don’t even have to think about it. The best time to get started is now.

More by this author

Scott Christ

Scott Christ is a writer, entrepreneur, and founder of Pure Food Company.

10 Simple Ways To Live a Longer and Happier Life I Want To Be Happy: 7 Science-Backed Ways to Find Happiness 17 Things Emotionally Strong People Don’t Do 10 Things To Do When You Are Feeling Down 10 Things a Happy Person Does Differently

Trending in Health

1 Will a Weight Loss Cleanse Really Improve Your Health? 2 Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss (The Ultimate Weight Loss Hack) 3 8 Best Teas for Weight Loss and Fat Burning 4 The Effects of Stress on Your Body And Mind (You Never Knew) 5 7 Signs You’re Burnt out (And How to Bounce Back)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on October 12, 2020

How to Spot a Burnout And Overcome It Fast

How to Spot a Burnout And Overcome It Fast

Burnout at work is an issue that most people who suffer from it, suffer unknowingly.

Have you ever felt that you can’t start an assignment, have an immense urge to Netflix binge, or couldn’t get yourself to wake up on time even though you have a lot on your plate? The cause for these might be burnout.

According to Deloitte’s report, “many companies may not be doing enough to minimize burnout.” This is to say that the responsibility is not only on the employee. According to that report, nearly 70 percent of professionals feel their employers are not doing enough to prevent or alleviate burnout within their organization, and they definitely should.[1]

Too many companies don’t invest enough in creating a positive environment. One out of five (21%) said that their company does not offer any programs or initiatives to prevent or alleviate burnout. It is the culture, not the fancy well-being programs that would probably do the best work.

This is a significant problem for individuals and companies, and it’s also an issue on a macro level. A Stanford University research found that more than 120,000 deaths per year, and approximately 5%–8% of annual healthcare costs, are associated with the way U.S. companies manage their workforces.[2]

It is both the employee and the employer’s responsibility—and the latter can certainly take more responsibility.

In this article, I’ll guide you on how to know if you suffer from burnout and, more importantly, what you can do about it.

Who Are Prone to Burning Out?

For starters, it is a good thing to know that you’re in good company. According to a Gallup poll, 23% (of 7,500 surveyed) expressed burnout more often than not. Additionally, 44% felt it sometimes. Nearly 50% of social entrepreneurs who attended the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in 2018 reported having struggled with burnout and depression at some point.[3]

According to Statista (2017), 13% of adults reported having problems unwinding in the evenings and weekends. According to a Deloitte survey (consisting of 1,000 full-time U.S. employees), 77% of respondents said that they have experienced employee burnout at their current job.[4]

Advertising

Burnout is not only an issue of the spoiled first-world. Rather, it is a serious matter that must be taken care of appropriately. It affects so many people, and its impacts are just too significant to be ignored.

Some occupations are more prone to burnout, such as people who deeply care about their jobs more than others. According to the Harvard Business Review, “Passion-driven and caregiving roles such as doctors and nurses are some of the most susceptible to burnout.”

The consequences can have life or death ramifications as “suicide rates among caregivers are dramatically higher than that of the general public—40% higher for men and 130% higher for women”. It is also the case for teachers, non-profit workers, and leaders of all kinds.[5]

Deloitte’s survey also found that 91% say that they have an unmanageable amount of stress or frustration. Heck, 83% even say that it can negatively impact their relationships. Millennials are slightly more impacted by burnout (84% of Gen Y vs. 77% in other generations).

What Is Burnout Syndrome?

So, what is it, exactly? Burnout was officially included in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11) and is an occupational phenomenon.

According to the World Health Organization, burnout includes three dimensions:[6]

  1. Feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion;
  2. Increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job;
  3. Reduced professional efficacy.

The 5 Stages of Burnout

At this point, you must have a clue if you’re at risk of burnout. There are different methods for understanding where you are on the burnout syndrome scale, and one of the most common ones is the “five stages method.”

1. Honeymoon Phase

As you may remember If you’ve gotten married, there’s always the honeymoon phase. You’re so happy and feel almost invincible. You love your spouse and at this stage, you’re very excited about everything. It’s the same when it comes to taking on a new job or role or starting a new business.

At first, most of the time, you’re hyper-motivated. Although you might be able to notice signs of potential future burnout, in most cases, you might ignore them. You’re highly productive, super motivated, creative, and accept (and take) responsibility.

Advertising

The honeymoon phase is critical because if you plant the seeds of good mental health and coping strategies, you can stay at this phase for extended periods.

2. Onset of Stress

Let’s continue with the wedding metaphor. Now that you’re happily married for some time, you might start noticing certain issues with your spouse that you don’t like. You might have seen them before, but now they take up more space in your life.

You might be less optimistic and feel signs of stress or minor symptoms of physical or emotional fatigue at work. Your productivity reduces, and you think that your motivation is lower.

3. Chronic Stress

Let’s hope you don’t get there in your marriage, but unfortunately, some people get there. At this stage, your stress level is consistently high, and the other symptoms of stage 2 persist.

At this point, you start missing deadlines, your sleep quality is low, and you’re resentful and cynical. Your caffeine consumption might be higher, and you’re increasingly unsatisfied.

4. Burnout

This is the point where you can’t go on unless there is a significant change in your workspace environment. You have a strong desire to move to another place, and clinical intervention is sometimes required.

You feel neglected, your physical symptoms are increasing, and you get to a place where your stomach hurts daily. You might obsess over problems in your life or work and, generally speaking, you should treat yourself.

5. Habitual Burnout

This is the phase in which burnout is embedded in your life. You might experience chest pains or difficulty breathing, outbursts of anger or apathy, and physical symptoms of chronic fatigue.

The Causes of Burnout

So, now that we know how to identify our stage of burnout, we can move on to tackling its leading causes. According to the Gallup survey, the top burnout reasons are:[7]

Advertising

  1. Getting unfair treatment at work – This is not always something that you can fully control. At the same time, you should remember that even if you’re not calling the shots, it doesn’t mean that you have to accept unfair treatment. The consequences mentioned above are just not worth it in most cases.
  2. Workload – Another leading cause of stress according to dozens of interviews conducted before writing the article. According to Statista, in 2017, 39% of workers said a heavy workload was their leading cause of stress. We live in a busy work environment, and we will share some tips on how to manage that.
  3. Not knowing your role – While not something you can fully control, you can, and probably should, take action to better define it with your boss.
  4. Inadequate communication and support from your manager – Like the others above, you can’t fully control that, but as we’ll soon share, you can take action to be in better control.
  5. Time pressure – As mentioned, motivated, passionate workers are more in danger of experiencing burnout. One of the reasons is that they’re pressuring themselves to do more, sometimes at the expense of their mental health. We’ll address how to work on that as well.

How to Overcome a Burnout

After going over the stages of burnout and the leading causes of becoming burned out, it might be a good time to let you know that there is a lot you can do to fight it head-on.

However, let’s start with what you should not do. Burnout cannot be fixed by going on a vacation. It should be a long-term solution, implemented daily.

According to Clockify (2019), these are the popular ways to avoid burnout:

  1. Focus on your family life – 60% of adults said that stable family life is key to avoiding burnout. Maintaining meaningful relationships in your life is proven to reduce stress (instead of having many unmeaningful relationships).
  2. Exercising comes in second, with 58% reporting that jogging, running, or doing any exercise significantly relieves stress. Even a relatively short walk might improve your body’s resilience to stress.
  3. Seek professional advice – 55% say they would turn to a professional. There are online websites where you can speak with professionals at reduced costs.

Aside from the three most popular ways of avoiding burnout, you can also try the following:

1. Improve Time Management

Try understanding how you can use your time better and leave more time for relaxation. That’s easy to say (or write) but more challenging to implement. It would help if you started by prioritizing yourself. Understanding the connection between your values and your everyday tasks is a tremendous help. You can use proven methods to improve the relationship between your vision and goals to your daily life tasks’ lists. Check out the Horizons of Focus or V2MOM methods to get started.

2. Use the P.L.E.A.S.E. Method

The P.L.E.A.S.E. is a combination of things you should do to be at your best physically. It means Physical Illness (P.L.) prevention, Eat healthy (E), Avoid mood-altering drugs (A), Sleep well (S), and Exercise (E).

3. Prioritize

You don’t have to say yes to everything that comes across your way at work (or in other aspects of life). You’d be surprised how easy it can become once you start saying no. Some might even describe it as exhilarating.

4. Let Your Brain rest

Culturally, most of us are already wired to think that hard work is essential, and while that’s true in most cases, we sometimes forget that our brain needs to rest for it to recharge. Seven hours of sleep are essential (depending on your age). Meditation might be helpful, too.

5. Pay Attention to Positive Events

According to Therapistaid.com, we tend to focus on the bad things in our lives. However, by focusing on positive things, we can change our mindset. One way to practice this daily is by writing three good things about your life every morning or evening. It’s been scientifically proven that doing so for a few months can help rewire your brain.

Advertising

6. Take Some “You” Time

A Netflix binge is not always good for you, but it might be in some cases. The better the leisure time is, the better you’ll feel in the long term. It’s usually better to read a book or start a new hobby that requires more cognitive skills than just lying on the couch. But as long as you feel good watching a movie, that might be a good start.

7. New Technologies Might Be Helpful

There are tons of self-help apps such as Fabulous, Headspace (meditation), Noom (diet and exercise), and others. They’re good to use, but you should also be careful not to run away from your problems only to watch social media for hours. It’s not real, and no one’s life is perfect (even if their Facebook or Instagram feeds might seem so). You should also be aware not to be in an “always-on” mindset.

Bottom Line

Whether you’re at the first or the fifth stage of the burnout phases, the goal of this article is to show you that there are always ways to fight it. The first thing is self-awareness—knowing that there’s a problem. The second step is to decide what to do about it.

You can also consider using Lifehack’s community. You’re more than welcome to share your burnout story on our Facebook page.

Bonus: Rebound from Burnout in 8 Hours

Watch what you can do to rebound from burnout quickly in this episode of The Lifehack Show:

https://youtu.be/MNnyqQWK_zg

Featured photo credit: Lechon Kirb via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next