1. Not Drinking Enough Water
I’m sure you’ve heard it before: you should be drinking eight 8 ounce glasses of water every day. But have you also heard that there is absolutely no scientific evidence to back up this claim? When you think about it, it’s a pretty absurd blanket statement; we are all different people with different body shapes, sizes, and needs. We partake in different levels of physical activity and sweat our own unique amounts. Regional differences are important to consider as well – certainly someone living in Arizona is going to perspire more throughout the day than someone living in Canada!
To ensure that you are getting enough water be sure to have a glass by your side throughout the day and fill it up when you can. Drink water when you are thirsty and also when you feel hungry, since this is often a sign of mild dehydration. Try having some water before anything else. If you drink coffee throughout the day this is extra important for you, as coffee is a diuretic, which means that it makes you urinate more frequently and therefore leads to dehydration. Try to drink an extra large glass of water for every coffee you drink, and if you can, cut back on coffee altogether, limiting yourself to one or two cups.
2. Not Eating Enough Fresh Fruits And Veggies
This is a simple thing that every one could probably use some help with. Whether it’s adding a banana to your usual breakfast or choosing a salad at lunch, we could all use a little more fresh fruits and vegetables in our diets.
If you are looking for a snack, why not grab an apple or some celery sticks with peanut butter? Once you start cutting out sugary, salty foods, your body will start to crave them less.
If you consume meat on a regular basis, instead of looking at the meat as the focal point of the meal, try to make sure the portion of veggies is even bigger. Eating too much meat can make our bodies acidic, while supplementing with fresh fruits and vegetables can help counteract that.
3. Slouching/Sitting Too Much
If you have an office job then you know that this one’s for you. Changing this behaviour can be tough, as it’s a hard habit to break, and we are not always aware of the physical toll that sitting takes on our bodies. It is, however, an important thing to realize. There have been an increasing number of studies that have proven sitting and slouching too much can lead to back and spine problems, gastrointestinal pains, headaches, bad circulation, and a whole host of other issues.
If you can, set a timer to get up every 30 minutes and do 10 jumping jacks, or go for a short walk. You can also look into getting a standing desk, which could be very beneficial as well, and many of which convert from a sitting to a standing position in seconds.
4. Forgetting To Breathe Or Breathing Incorrectly
We take an average of 20,000 breaths each day, but did it ever occur to you that you could be doing this incorrectly? The proper way to breathe is to take deep slow breaths into your abdomen, hold for a few seconds and then slowly release. If you watch babies and children breathe you will see that this is how they do it and how we did it at that age as well.
As we get older we become more stressed and being stressed actually changes the way we breathe. When we are stressed our bodies essentially go into ‘fight or flight’ mode, which means we take short and sharp breaths to help prepare us for the ‘fight’ we are about to face. Just think about how often during the day you are stressed out, it could be every moment of every day.
In the long run this can deprive our bodies of the essential CO2 and oxygen, which can lead to insomnia, panic attacks, dizziness, extreme fatigue and even increase your heart rate.
Try to make an effort to take some deep breaths as often you can remember, but especially when you are stressed out or nervous about something.
5. Forgetting To Smile
Have you ever heard the saying, “fake it ‘till you make it?” Sometimes I know you don’t want to smile, and you don’t feel like you are even capable of smiling, but I assure you that cracking a smile can make you feel a bit better, almost instantly. And hey, there’s even some science to back this up.
When we smile our brain actually releases endorphins that counteract stress and make us feel more relaxed.
Not to mention the fact that smiles are contagious! Smiling is a great way to spread some cheer and build trust with friends, coworkers, and even strangers. Who couldn’t use a nice big smile in their direction once in a while?
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