Throughout the month of August, National Wellness Month aims to inspire and encourage people around the country to spend more time taking care of themselves. This doesn't just mean having a bath and buying that thing you always wanted, it also means putting time aside to focus on cultivating healthy habits that nourish both your mind and your body.
Too often we put our own needs on the back burner and get wrapped up in the ever changing, rapid river that is our busy lives. This month serves as a reminder to slow down, let go and let be.
This month, try starting a routine that promotes wellness. This could be anything from eating more mindfully or putting 5 minutes aside for a quick meditation session. Self-care is completely personal and so what works for one person may not work for you. In fact, one of the things that wellness is all about is listening to your mind and body and responding by giving it what it needs.
In honour of this special month, we have compiled a list of changes, big and small, that can make you feel better.
1. Meditate. Meditation is everything. If there was ever an elixir of wellness, meditation is the sweet nectar we should all be drinking. Often referred to as a practice, meditation is never perfect the first time. Regular practice is the only way to really find that sweet spot. Find 5 minutes a day (you know you can) to sit in a comfortable position and switch off. Your mind will be frantic the first few times, it may seem like an impossible feat, but the more you do the better it'll be. Try guided meditation apps like Calm or Headspace for a gentle bit of help.
2. Read a book. Research shows that just 30 minutes of reading a day can improve your way of life. Find something that excites you, calms you, inspires you or even just interests you. There is a book out there for anyone and everyone. Read a few pages before bed and allow the words of talented people to teach you lessons you may not even know were there to be taught.
3. Drink water. It may seem basic, but you'd be surprised to know how many people forget to remain hydrated throughout the day. Water allows our body to function, it's a natural detox, a skin clearer, a mood booster. Adults should aim to drink at least 2L a day. Do this and watch your body and mind become instantly clearer.
4. Yoga. Stretching should be part of every ones daily routine. A lot of us spend so much time sitting down in the office, only getting up to move every now and then that we forget to stretch. It's not all about handstands and one armed planks, a simple cat-cow or forward fold is enough to get the joints and muscles working. Try burning some incense to fully ground in the moment. Our bodies are made to move! So let's move guys! Give your back the love it deserves, it'll thank you for it.
5. Stop staring at that screen. Yep, this one, the one your staring at right now. Society has been conditioned to live life through screens and our eyes and minds are suffering because of it. If your work is computer based, try the 20-20-20 rule- take a 20 second break every 20 minutes by looking 20 feet away.
6. Stop the take out. It is so easy to get into the habit of ordering take away every night, which seems so tempting after a long day of work. Avoid the temptation by meal prepping for the week ahead. Cook up some delicious and nutritious meals full of yummy ingredients and pop them in the fridge or freezer ready for the rest of the week. This doesn't mean you need to quit your Friday night Chinese but moderation is wellness so limit it when you can.
7. And finally, have a bath. Switch off. Soak. Repeat. Dedicating an evening to self-care does wonders for your mind and body. I like to have nice deep relaxing soak every Sunday night to prepare myself for the week. Add a few drops of your favourite essential oils, light a relaxing candle and close your eyes. The world will continue to spin, I promise. Take those 20 minutes and relish in a bit of 'me time', once you do, you'll never go back.
If you make any of these changes we'd love to hear about it. Tag us on Instagram using #NurtureThroughNature to show us what healthy changes you're making this National Wellness Month.