by Farrel Greenspan
All people feel struggle when they are attempting to commit to something new in the long term. It is a fact in itself that many find hard to accept. Committing to progress and improving your well-being is no different. Many people feel like they will never reach their goals, or often they give up before noticing any benefits that will come with the changes they are trying to make.
What follows are 4 tips aimed at improving your energy, mood, self-esteem, work life balance and at the same time decreasing your stress. I am encouraging you to follow through with these easy suggestions for the next 30 days and then compare the before and after effects.
- Sleep – Wake up at the same time everyday including weekends. Do not stress about what time you are going to or falling asleep. Every time you hit the snooze button or go back to sleep you are telling your brain and body that it is okay to go to sleep at different times or wake up in the night because you will play catch-up in the morning or on weekends. It is difficult at first but you will notice when you do not allow yourself any additional sleep time, your sleep starts to correct itself into a healthier pattern. One of the most common issues I see in my practice is people having difficulty with either getting to sleep or staying asleep. A poor sleep schedule has an enormous impact on your mood and the way you feel. It is a very big contributing factor to symptoms of depression and anxiety.
- Exercise – Set a simple goal for yourself to be more active than you already are. This can even be a 15-minute walk in the morning or evening. Day in and day out many people feel like they just barely have enough energy to go about their day, let alone find time for exercise. Exercising or staying active does not have to be an hour in the gym or even strenuous activity. Any exercise you decide to do is preferably done in the morning as it helps your metabolism throughout the day, improves sleep quality and does not leave you activated or energized when you are trying to go to sleep. For the first couple days of increasing your activity levels you may feel more fatigued, however after a few days to a week you will notice increased energy levels that help you throughout your day.
- Work-Life Balance – Leave your work at the office. I know, easier said than done, but it will do wonders for your stress levels. In reality, you stress about deadlines and other tasks that need your attention. I am not saying you can’t work later if need be; the point is to completely separate your work life from your home life. There is always going to be more work to get done. This separation will make you more productive at work, while at the same time improve your relationship with your spouse, family members and friends.
- Gratitude – Each day acknowledge at least one thing in your life that you are grateful for or proud of. Intrinsically, people are so focused on what they do instead of what they have already done. This only leads to an attitude of failure that perpetuates feelings of disappointment, jealousy and being unsatisfied. By acknowledging things you are grateful for in your life you are creating a shift in attention to boost your self-esteem and confidence.
Follow these tips for the next 30 days and chart your progress each week in 4 areas: Energy, Mood, Self-Esteem and Stress. Put the chart on the fridge for easy access and to help you stick with the program. Rate how you feel for each category on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being low and 10 being high. Stick with this activity for 30 days; it does not have to be forever, just give it a solid chance and after that, you can decide if you want to continue doing any of the suggestions above. Enjoy your next 30 days.
Farrel Greenspan is a Registered Provisional Psychologist. If you have any questions or are interested in topics related to mental health you can contact him at (780)-901-2638, firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on twitter @FarrelGreenspan or check out his facebook page Farrel Greenspan Psychology