In my practice I believes in MicroChanges (TM). These are simple easy practices that when layered over time have a significant positive impact. This week I will poost a daily habit for you to add to your self care regime. The idea is that you keep hold of the one from the previous day so that by the end of the week you have added 5 small practices to your life. Habits are better sustained when you do the following:
Commit – Declare the habit and commit to doing it for at least the next 5 days
Why? – State your motivation for developing this habit and know how it will benefit you
Cue – Try and think how you can fit it in. Attach it to an alreay strong daily habit
Rewards – Knowing how this practice will positively enhance your health
Track – Any simple way of tracking encourages you to carry on and allows you to feel a sense of achievement!
**Day 1 Challenge**
To drink at least 2 litres of water in your waking hours. 2 litres is about 6-8 cups. If you already do this then add lemon to promote and alkaline gut.
(If you are having any caffienated drinks please add another cup. And if you are exercising another 1 / 2 cups.) Your brain is about 75% water. When your brain is functioning on a full reserve of water, you will be able to think faster, be more focused, and experience greater clarity and creativity. Water is also essential for delivering nutrients to the brain and for removing toxins.
**Day 2 Challenge**
**Day 3 Challenge**
Todays challenge is to ensure you move your body – ideally outside for at least 10 mins. If you are already doing this I suggest you increase your informal movement and practice some principles of NEAT & NEPA (see below). Pick 3 and add them in to your day.
- Brush teeth with your non dominant hand
- Stand while working.
- Balance on one foot while on the phone or waiting to do something (kettle boiling, putting a sock on… etc)
- Stretch while standing up
- Increase opportunities to get up and down allowing your body to go in to deep squat. (from the floor to standing)
- Take the stairs
- Spread your toes and stretch your fingers when at your desk
- Screw up paper before throwing in the recycling bin to improve hand and wrist muscles
- Engage your stomach and move your spine while seated
- Train your eyes: pick different spots in the room to focus your eyes on, near and far.
**Day 4 Challenge**
During the day we have so much to think about our mind is constantly multi tasking or piling up things to do. This evening why not try and make a definite plan around sleep and bedtime. This is about being mindful at the end of the day. Rather than sinking into the sofa and falling asleep in a Netflix haze, try making sure you are in bed by a certain time, (I recommend 10.30pm to be in your bedroom). You could make a decision to leave your screens outside your bedroom. Plan your evening without open ended options and you body will thank you. By knowing what you are going to do the body starts to prepare for sleep too.So you could try one or all of these:
- Setting a bedtime curfew (Most restorative sleep is between 10pm – 2am)
- No screens 30 mins before sleep (blue light imitates daylight fooling the brain to stay awake)
- Phone outside the bedroom.
- Pick an alternative bedtime activity reading, listening to music, journalling or breathing etc.
**Day 5 Challenge**
Take a breathing break.
Today’s chellenge is to spend at least 3 minutes once today to close your eyes and breathe. (If you prefer you could simply follow the 3 min starter meditations on Headspace). Take a note of how you feel before and how you feel after. Breathing is one of the most powerful tools to have in your self care kit.
It always amazes me how many problems can be solved by simply breathing in and breathing out
- Frustrated? Breathe in. Breathe out.
- Worried? Breathe in. Breathe out.
- Overwhelmed? Breathe in. Breathe out.
- Confused? Breathe in. Breathe out.
- Exhausted? Breathe in. Breathe out.