Balancing Healthy Living in a Busy World
I had quite the fantasy about being my own boss. When I was planning to quit my corporate job, I envisioned a world that was far more relaxed, a routine of sleeping in, going on a lazy morning walk, posting a #butfirstcoffee post around 9:45 AM and then in an organized and calm fashion, working a bit, being rewarded a ton, practicing yoga, having a romantic candlelit dinner with my husband (that I cooked completely from scratch, of course), and going to sleep easily feeling rested, accomplished, and content.
In reality, being an entrepreneur in the wellness world is one of the hardest, most grinding, exhausting, things I have ever done. To be clear, it is also the most fulfilling and rewarding thing I have ever done, but practicing what I preach is easier said than done. Though my schedule has more flexibility than my former travel-all-the-time corporate career, it is no less busy, consuming, and if anything, is far more difficult to unplug from.
That said, the process of finding and balancing healthy living in the busyness of life is possible and I have explored it on both ends of the professional spectrum. Whether you are a full-time mom with three crazy kids, a student soaking up knowledge like a sponge, or a #girlboss (or #guyboss, of course) kicking butt in the boardroom, there is a way to balance healthy living amidst the beautiful mess of life.
In order to do so, there are some tips and practices I personally believe to be transformational. Today, I am sharing with you a few secrets I have gleaned along the way that you can easily slide into your schedule to find greater alignment, focus, and health.
1. Create a morning ritual.
I cannot emphasize this enough. People from Tim Ferris to health guru Kris Carr, and so many wise people in between emphasize the power of a morning ritual. Ideally, you would carve out 30-60 minutes every morning forsome kind of centering. Perhaps it includes meditation, a bit of yoga, some journaling or intention-setting, or on my ideal morning, a combination of all three. In reality, you may have no more than 2-3 minutes to do something for yourself before you rush off to work. Nevertheless, try to commit to even a few minutes of morning space. Enjoy your cup of tea or coffee mindfully. Place your hands on your belly and connect to your breath for a count of twenty. Find something that allows you to ground and steady yourself before running off to save the world. You will have a lot more strength for whatever comes your way and feel less scattered.
2. Fight for your endorphins.
I hear from numerous clients that when days get hectic the first thing to get cut is exercise. I actually think it should be one of the last to go! Moving the body is vital to provide fresh oxygenated blood to every organ – including the brain! The busier the day the MORE essential it is to move your bum. Again, marathon training is wonderful but not necessary to benefit. Instead, even 25-30 minutes can work wonders for your health, and provide you a much-needed boost in a very busy day. Even better? Try for some intervals to really get your heart rate up, and pack an even more powerful flood-of-endorphins punch.
3. Power up with plants.
On a cellular level, plants help our bodies better respond to stress, adapt, and heal. When our lives our full of being on the go, we can unfortunately live in a state of fight-or-flight. Eating more greens (kale, chard, parsley, spinach, you get the idea), actually helps your body continually renew itself. Flush out what you no longer need, and maintain a state of vibrant health and wellness.
4. Prioritize the schedule of YOU.
Whether you schedule in a healthy snack break, your workout, or even your morning ritual, the act of putting something into your calendar, something that is about your own wellness, is a statement. It is a declaration and the seed of intention to follow through. Plus, if you have calendar reminders to help – it will keep you more accountable.
5. Find your why in the busyness of the day.
My worst weeks are the ones where I have felt aimless or unmoored. I strive and strive but forget the why behind the work. Spinning wheels are no fun. Feeling exhausted at the end of a day without purpose isn’t either. Finding your “why” is often deeply illuminating and can shake-you out of the zombie-hamster-wheel of achievement that so many of us become locked into. What is your personal mission statement? Why are you doing what you do? Finding your why will keep your perspective when things get busy.
Whether you insert one or all five of these tips into your weekly schedule, know that starting where you are – right where you are right now, is the best place to start.
(P.S. this article will be featured in the From the Farmer's 'Whole Living' Section of their new magazine. Check out that section right here)