There are a lot of ways to pursue healthy living. In order to truly achieve a lifestyle that is healthy and productive, you need to pay attention to all of your life functions and behaviors. This includes physical health, mental and emotional health and spiritual health. If you can achieve a holistic approach to keeping your mind, body and spirit healthy and in sync, you will be able to declare your lifestyle a healthy one. Here are the three most important aspects of healthy living, and what they include.
When it comes to keeping yourself physically healthy, you know what you have to do. Eat good food, exercise daily and avoid things like smoking, drugs, alcohol, excessive sun and high risk behaviors. When it comes to your physical health, moderation is essential. You don’t have to completely deprive yourself of things you enjoy to stay healthy. Just make those periods of enjoyment count. A glass of wine every night with dinner does not mean you are unhealthy, but a couple bottles before you fall asleep every night probably is. Enjoy your outdoor activities in the sun and soak up the vitamin D when you can, but always wear a hat or sunscreen and make sure you aren’t putting yourself at risk for skin cancer. Get regular physicals from your healthcare practitioner and make sure you move as often as you can. Again, you don’t have to be a gym rat, but walking instead of driving and playing a game of tennis instead of watching more television reruns will point you in the right healthy living direction.
Mental and Emotional Health
Stress can be just as unhealthy as smoking a pack of cigarettes every day. Learn how to manage your stress and find useful and healthy outlets for it. When you are feeling depressed, anxious or helpless, talk to someone. Everyone needs a mental health support system. Therapy, counseling and support groups are not anything to shy away from because you’re worried about what people will think. People will think you shouldn’t have waited so long! Take some time for self-reflection so you can consider your emotional responses to people and events and figure out how to bring less stress and conflict upon yourself. It has a direct impact on your physical health. Make sure you get enough sleep every night, and take advantage of all the mental health resources available to you.
When I start talking about spirituality, my atheist friends get antsy. Don’t worry – I’m not out to convert anyone. Spiritual health is an important aspect to healthy living, but it does not have to be found in a church, mosque or temple. You might find your spirit is most at peace in nature or when you’re talking to your kids about things they don’t understand yet. You don’t have to be religious – you don’t even have to believe in God – to protect and preserve your spiritual health. Take a look inside and figure out what’s there. Giving that part of your life a little attention will make you healthier.