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With hectic daily lives and never ending ‘to do’ lists it’s no wonder that we usually end up at the bottom of our list of priorities. But if we neglect taking care of ourselves for too long then we begin to feel depleted, something I’m sure you’re familiar with. Sadly this can fuel a never ending cycle and leaves us without the energy to devote to ourselves and those quality moments with the people we love.
If this is all sounding a little too familiar and you’d love to boost your energy and your self care all at the same time then you’ll love these tips…
1: REDUCE SUGAR
It’s easy to reach for foods that have added sugar in them when our energy levels take a dip. But, before we know it, we’re lost in the highs and lows. Not only that but sugar has a terrible effect on our health; increasing blood pressure, inflammation, weight gain, and liver damage.
Thankfully, reducing it is simple. Start with a small step but make sure to be consistent with your efforts. Try replacing one thing, maybe the amount of sugar in your tea or coffee, swap the fizzy drinks for water or say no to those afternoon snacks! Slow changes will make the transition so much easier and help to boost your motivation and energy along the way.
2: SLEEP WELL
Sleep is vital to our wellbeing. But, experts believe that we’re getting less than ever. If you can’t get to bed a little earlier then try and improve the quality of the hours that you do enjoy...
Make sure your bedroom is a haven of calm, and not a place to catch up on emails or social media – all of the blue light emitted by our devices really affects the quality of our sleep, even if you don’t realise it. And, the better you sleep, the more energy you’ll have the next day.
It also helps to go to bed at the same time each day. Try and wind down for at least an hour beforehand too – avoiding sugar, caffeine and alcohol – while keeping the lights off or a little dimmer than usual. Click here to read 10 tips for getting a better night's sleep.
3: REDUCE PROCESSED FOODS
Eating natural, healthy foods gives us more energy - the opposite is true for processed food which is full of all sorts of chemicals to make sure that it smells and tastes as good (and addictive) as possible.
Start by getting familiar with food ingredient labels to see exactly what your favourite foods are made from. Explore new options for meals made with fresh ingredients...take time to create them yourself or opt for a meal delivery box to help out on those days when time is short.
If you have a lot of changes to make to reduce the amount of processed food in your diet then take one thing at a time; this week cut out snacks, then next week try some healthier lunch options. Even small steps make a difference to how you feel and you’ll soon enjoy a boost to your energy levels.
4: EXERCISE DAILY
The benefits of daily exercise seem endless, it boosts our energy, speeds up our metabolism, increases our serotonin levels and helps us sleep better - and that’s just the beginning. But so many of us think that to get these benefits we need to spend hours in the gym - not true, thankfully! Adding an extra 20 minutes exercise into your day can make the world of difference. Start with anything that increases your heart rate; a brisk walk, dancing around the house or a gentle jog - it all counts.
5: RETREAT INTO NATURE
Whether it’s a woodland walk, local park or your own garden, spending time close to nature feeds the soul. It helps us find the balance and clarity that we need and in turn boosts our motivation and energy to move forward. Here are a few more ways to reconnect to nature - even if the weather isn’t great.
So, that’s how you can start a few self care habits to boost your energy. And, the best thing is that they all work right away, so you won’t have to wait long to feel the benefits. I hope that they’ve inspired you to make a change.
AUTHOR: LEANNA DOOLIN
Co – Founder of holistic skincare brand, Pure Thoughts and advocate for women finding pause in their day to breathe deeply, give thanks and reconnect to what matters. Loves early mornings, dogs and books that you can’t put down.