I don’t know if anyone else is feeling the same, but I am getting run down. I’m not sleeping as much as I should, I’m not eating as healthy as I should, and I’m not taking time to make sure that I’m running at full capacity (or even half capacity, if I’m being entirely honest). Work has been particularly stressful, life is getting incredibly busy, and the littlest things seem to slow me down and preoccupy my mind. It’s time to go back to the basics and focus on what I need to be the best me! I believe that finishing the year strongly is just as important, if not more so, than starting the new year fresh. There are small things that we can do to take care of ourselves, and today I’m gonna to share some of my recommendations!
Cut Out 90% of the Junk Food
If you are anything like me, going cold turkey on junk food is impossible. Sooner or later, I give in and eat a big bowl of whatever I wasn’t supposed to eat. The holidays and accompanying parties are coming, and you will probably be seeing quite a bit of less than healthy food options. So, allow yourself some, just not a ton. It sounds entirely ridiculous, but I love the Tostitos Cantina Extra Thick chips. Like, can’t stop eating them if the bag is in front of me. I like to take some to work though, for a snack, so I actually count out ten chips (slightly less than a serving) and that’s all I get. Enough for a taste but not so much to go overboard!
I know that apparently continually eating smaller meals is supposedly better for you, but for me it just leads to me continually eating, stretching my stomach, and taking in way more food and calories than someone my size would ever need. Time to stop snacking in between meals! I certainly am back in the habit non-stop eating, and there really isn’t a reason for it. Other than a small snack within an hour of exercise, no more snacking!
Go to Bed
I know what you are thinking: “Duh, Historian, we all need sleep”. However, saying we need and actually getting said sleep are two entirely different things that rarely actually ever line up. I get overtired very, very quickly, and it’s been a constant state for the past month now. It’s time to stop making excuses and actually get some sleep! With the 11th off of work, I slept in for the first time in probably months, and it was wonderful. The moral of the story? To be a functioning human you need to actually sleep.
Instead of continually trying to remember eight billion things in your head, keep a small notebook and pen (or a list app on your phone) handy! Realistically, you typically can’t drop everything that you are doing to move onto another task that you have thought of- write it down and come back to it when you have time. Also, write down what you think you need to get down the next day before you go to bed. It gives you an idea of your attack plan for the day, and you won’t wake up thinking of random things that you need to do. (Maybe that’s just me, though…)
Raise Your Heart Rate
It still sometimes seems backwards to me, that not exercising makes you more tired when exercising burns energy. However, getting up and moving really does make a difference in your energy and for your overall health! I’m lucky that I can go to the gym on my lunch, but if you can’t, try and go for a walk, do a quick yoga sequence, or even try a plank. If you are worried about odd looks for co-workers, try to organise an office challenge to see how many steps, squats, planks, and lunges you can do! My office did one last December and I was surprised to see how into it we all were. Also, don’t let that stop when you get home for the evening or weekend- if you do nothing (exercise wise) from Friday afternoon to Monday morning, that’s over a quarter of the week gone. Keep the movement going!
Do Something for Fun!
If characterised rubber ducks who appear to be the duck equivalento f white-water-rafting down a teeny canal isn’t fun, I don’t know what is. At least once a day, do something just for fun! Not because it is something you have to get done or someone else wants you to do it or you think you should, but just because it’s fun. We all need to let off steam and relax a little to re-calibrate and focus ourselves. Take 15 minutes and play with your dog and a ball! Watch a new YouTube video from a channel you love. Watch a dumb movie that might not change the world but never fails to make you laugh. Throw two bath bombs in the bath tub to see what kind of ridiculous swirls are going to happen. Give your brain cells a wee rest and let them put their tiny feet up. (I’m not sure why I imagine brain cells to have feet, but I do and it seems an appropriate image here.) Running your mind ragged will do you absolutely no favours, so relax and enjoy your time!
What do you do to take care of you?