by Brianna McCulley, University of Kentucky Active Women’s Health Initiative
It is extremely important that to prioritize our health and wellness if we want to be successful in our work, school, or relationships. Our mental and physical health has a tremendous impact on our everyday relationships and responsibilities. When we feel mentally or physically poor, it can be very difficult to have the energy, motivation, positive mindset, or attention to successfully accomplish our goals. Luckily, we can help prevent ourselves from feeling this way by prioritizing our health and investing our time, energy, and efforts on maintaining healthy behaviors. To put it simply, we cannot invest ourselves to others without investing in ourselves first. Therefore, success starts with self-investment. Whether it is eating healthy, being physically active or practicing mindfulness, investing in your health and wellness needs to be a daily practice in order to optimize personal success.
So how do you invest in yourself every day? Here is a list of 5 easy steps to make self-investments last a lifetime.
- Make self-investment part of your everyday routine.
Schedule times throughout your day to engage in healthy eating habits and physical activity. No matter how busy life gets, it is extremely important that you find time for yourself to engage in healthy behaviors. Scheduling little breaks throughout your day to eat a healthy snack, stretch, or go on a quick walk around your office or neighborhood, can really make a difference in your mental and physical health.
- Invest in yourself every day. Whether it’s 20 minutes or 2 hours–DO IT!
Some days are just busier than others, that’s no problem! Self-investments are just like financial investments–a little can go a long way! Therefore, it’s always best to incorporate some degree of healthy activity in your day instead of pushing it off for another day. And on days where you might have extra free time, use it to catch up on some healthy self-care!
- Shake it up!
Try new healthy recipes or have variety in the types of physical activities you engage in! By engaging in a variety of physical activities, like gardening, dancing, and yoga, you can stimulate the brain and body in different ways. Eating different fruits and vegetables and trying new, healthy recipes is not only nutritious, but delicious! Shaking things up can help keep you motivated and stimulated.
- Accountability is key!
Having a system in place that keeps you accountable is extremely important in maintaining self-investments for life! We all struggle to stay motivated and accountable on our own. Therefore, it can be extremely helpful to get an accountability buddy or buddies! Pets, family members, friends, personal trainers and dieticians can all make very good accountability buddies. You can also encourage other women to invest in their health by engaging in healthy behaviors together.
- Turn mundane tasks into self-care life hacks!
Have a lot of chores to do? Blast your favorite music and dance, dance, dance, until all your chores are done! Compete with yourself and see how fast you can do a set of chores. Not only will you have fun cleaning, but you will also get your heart pumping and a good workout in. By turning boring chores into opportunities to engage in healthy behaviors, for instance self-care and physical activity, you can positively affect your mental and physical well being.
If you need some motivation to get started, check out our Champions of Active Women podcast. We feature stories of active women to encourage and inspire others to find an activity they enjoy and get moving!
Invest in yourself and in your health! The better you feel mentally and physically, the more successful you will be in accomplishing your goals!
For up-to-date information about the Active Women’s Health Initiative, visit https://www.uky.edu/chs/awhi or follow us @ukawhi on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.