The general consensus is that in order to be healthy you have to make an unwavering commitment to all things ‘health’. The truth, however, is that in order to continually heighten your wellness, you only need to dedicate literally seconds a day, and without completely flipping your current life plans upside down.
For the most part, people want to feel and be healthier. The dilemma however, is that for many, taking the steps to get there may not be as simple or pleasant as one may like. Between eating this, not eating that, exercising more, but not too much, sleeping enough, but not oversleeping, thinking positive, balancing time for self care, engaging in activities that will improve your health while avoiding those that won’t, the list is endless and can create enough stress to spiral your health downwards on its own. So what’s the answer for those who may not be on the ultimate and dedicated path to 24/7 health promotion? Enough evidence supports short bursts of health engaging activities, accumulated over time, to be enough to provide the forward momentum needed to both help offset ill health practices while providing pro health opportunities to consistently and effectively improve your wellbeing.
Wellness, 10 seconds at a time
Science is proving that as little a ten second intervals, consistently accumulated over time, can be enough to tip your life in the health promoting direction. It doesn’t matter where your current health sits, doing any type of health promoting activity will only move you positively forward, and rightly so. By accumulating intervals of health practices, it will only serve as a way to slowly and realistically build healthy habits, all while not having to commit to dedicating your life to things you might not enjoy doing. Take for example breathing. Deep, slow breathing has been repeatedly shown to immediately lower blood pressure, reduce stress, clear the mind, improve oxygenation to the body, support the immune system, improve happiness, and improve overall health in many ways. For those unwilling to meditate or commit to yoga for example, even the most inactive person can benefit. A practice such as this is as simple as taking 3-5 slow, deep, controlled ‘belly’ breaths, literally over seconds, even while sitting on the couch watching your favourite TV show, can and will make a difference.
What can I do to improve my health in 10 seconds?
Now I’m not saying that simply taking a few slow breaths here and there is going to change your health world, however we do know that partaking in simple health promoting activities will make a difference (and is well proven). Here are some examples of simple and effective ways to build better health without having to commit to making an inconvenient change to your life, and all within 10 seconds at a time:
- Sit quietly and still
- Recognize a negative thought and change it into a positive one
- Stretch one body part
- Stand up from sitting down and walk around/move
- Walk outside, breathe in nature
- Drink a cup of pure filtered water
- Put your phone down
- Tell a joke/laugh
- Engage with a family member – talk.
- Hug someone
- Appreciate what you have
- Make the decision to slow down when you eat (including sitting down and focusing on your food)
- Make a choice to eat a healthy fruit or vegetable
- Take vitamin D
- Be thankful
- Do a squat or some form of physical activity
These may all seem like activities that will not affect your specific or overall health, yet it is proven that short bouts that promote physical, spiritual and mental health will equally help enhance many aspects of overall wellness.
By taking as little as ten seconds at a time and doing something that promotes healing and wellness, you will slowly find that engaging in such activities become easier, more enjoyable, and habitual, and will soon accumulate over days and weeks, and can hugely improve and change your wellness.
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