Monday, January 7, 2019

Taking Time for You

Ashley Svaty, Nutrition, Food Safety and Health Agent

Life is busy and as a result you may neglect your own well-being.  This can lead to stress, irritability, moodiness, and even depression.  Proper self-care can improve mood and daily productivity.  By taking care of yourself you will be more relaxed, content, stronger, better able to help others, and more confident. 

It is mentally healthy to take breaks from life’s daily routine, and such breaks should not come with guilt.  Slipping away from your daily routine doesn’t have to occur for extended periods of time-it can mean taking a bath, reading a book, walking your pet, playing with your kids or grandkids, or going to your bedroom with your door closed to sit in solitude for a bit. Sometimes it can be hard to find time for your self-care, but to-do lists can help. To-do lists allow you to prioritize due dates, short-and long-term goals, and rank importance which can help you feel more control and balance. Crossing items off to-do lists can be empowering because it’s a mental reminder that you are making progress.

One way that you can take time for yourself is to relax.  Relaxation is the body’s natural unwinding technique and has been referred to as the single most important key to health and well-being.  Relaxation allows you to experience more energy, sleep better, build up your immunity, concentrate better, and much more.  Relaxation can occur through taking a hot bath, reading a book, getting a massage or even taking a few deep breaths. 

Taking care of yourself by eating a nutritious diet and increasing your physical activity are also highly important. Exercise affects overall physical and mental well-being.  It increases strength, cardiovascular conditioning, flexibility, balance, and muscle mass.  It also boosts self-esteem along with confidence and helps lower stress and anxiety. Adding a 10-minute calming walk to your to-do list is a fantastic way to sneak in daily self-care. Wholesome, nutritious foods provide you with more energy, combat depression by keeping your brain functioning at its best, and prevent numerous other health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancers.

Finding humor in daily situations and laughing more throughout your day is truly the best medicine.  Laughter has the ability to increase the “feel good” hormones in the body, called endorphins. Laughing more can reduce stress, lower depression and help your body heal. Watch a funny movie or show, go to a comedy club, take a comedy class, or simply laugh with a close friend or loved one.

In today’s busy world, you juggle multiple priorities and responsibilities and likely make time for others before making time for yourself. But remember that you are important too. Take time for yourself-even if it’s 10 minutes a day to allow yourself to be your true self. To view more on taking time for yourself, please visit the source of this blog in full here: https://www.bookstore.ksre.ksu.edu/pubs/MF3267.pdf

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