We all live in a fast-paced world where we are chasing money, power, success. The To-do list keeps growing longer and have after-work commitments where we have to network and expand our social circles. Over-scheduling and double-booking have been signs of progress.
There is an alarming increase in stress-related disorders of all kinds for all ages, beginning with elementary school-age children who are struggling with obesity, depression, anxiety, attention disorders and all kinds of learning disabilities.
People have less time to reflect on anything as they become dominated by a need to act, a need to be online, robotically always checking.
Multi-tasking stimulates internal chaos and fragmented attention. It may also interrupt and diminish learning, productivity and even friendships. Switching your attention reduces your efficiency and skill.
Is this the price we have to pay for progress?
The results of this disconnection from nature and nature’s pace show up in therapists’ and doctors’ offices every day. Living under unnatural time pressures causes a myriad of psychological, social and physical ailments. We turn to junk food as an easy and time-saving fix. We hardly have time for ourselves to connect with nature, meditate and maintain our fitness routines. Sitting slouched on your office desk all day does not help your spine and waist size.
So how do we ensure that our economic progress is not leading us to an early grave?
1. Get enough rest at night.
Sleep is a vital indicator of overall health and well-being. Most adults need 7 to 8 hours of good quality sleep on a regular schedule each night. Eat latest at 7 p.m and sleep as early as 9 or 10 p.m.
I know…For those with children might find this unrealistic; but we need to acknowledge that taking care of our kids and neglecting ourselves is doing a disservice to the children in the long run. This is because they need you to be at your peak in order to take good care of them. Getting cranky and snapping at them or not being able to perform optimally at work ends up affecting them.
Be creative and ensure you get your 7 hours, minimum 6 hours of sleep should be your priority. You can have bed time the same time with the kids and catch up with the news on social media while beating traffic the following morning. Your body will thank you later!
Just like the growth of a tree is dependent upon it’s hidden, inner aspect; so does the growth and success of our lives depend on the inner development.
When you wake up, the subconscious mind is still active within the first 30 mins to 1 hour. You are yet to connect with reality. That is the best time to connect with God and set the intention for the day. This will enable you to get centered and ready to handle whatever the day has in store for you.
Meditation also heightens your mind-body connection, having a greater integration of thought and action hence increasing productivity.
3. Have a quick workout in the morning.
All you need is 20 mins of a high impact exercise targeting different muscle groups depending on your body goals. You do not need to go to the gym to get that sexy toned body. That weight can be shed off in the comfort of your house.
You can design short workouts or have a trainer design them for you. This can be a lot of fun and motivation if you do them with your partner! Better still, you can get a personal trainer who will make sure that those 20 mins count. Starting off your day with energy and a mindset ready to conquer the day as you conquer your body!
Exercising before breakfast jump-starts your metabolism and burns more fat. Sip a few glasses of water as you workout to awaken the system. This guarantees getting your ideal body faster and with extra energy to boost!
4. Have an easy and healthy breakfast.
Smoothies or fruit salads for breakfast are ideal and time-saving. Remember you body has been without food for almost 10 hours, so go light.You can also sip your smoothie while in traffic!
Alternatively, you can have porridge, sweet potatoes or oatmeal for a more filling effect. The body is ready to absorb all the nutrients from breakfast as the exercise has jump-started the system.
5. Have healthy snacks during the day.
Always have fruits and nuts to snack on during the day. An apple fits into your bag without any mess and you can munch on your nuts as you type away trying to beat that deadline. You can also have yoghurt for that filling effect. This ensures that you get healthy sugars to give you energy without compromising on your health.
Also, ensure that you drink atleast 2 L of water throughout the day. This will keep you hydrated, keeping off migraines and cravings!
6. Have a hearty laughter with a friend.
As they say, laughter is the best medicine of the soul! We have seen how the fast-paced lifestyle has adverse effects on our health.
Laughing instantly reduces the levels of stress hormones such as cortisol, epinephrine (adrenaline) and dopamine, and increases the production of serotonin and endorphins which reduce effects of stress.
You can also catch up on what’s happening in the social scene as you might have had to cut your social life short in order to be in bed by 9. Comparing notes with your friend’s fitness plans will keep you motivated and help keep each other accountable!