3 Habit Recommendations for the New Season
Point to Ponder:
Do you wake up looking at your phone, regularly treat yourself, exercise regularly, have a strong social community and try/learn new things?
Excitingly the school year has begun or is beginning for most everyone this week-whew! Regardless of what season of life you are in or if you have children or not, I think the the start of school is every women’s New Year--a time to start fresh, create and dig into a healthy, mindful and productive routine. As you begin to transition and make some changes into the new, I have three habit recommendations that I believe will allow us to feel, look and be your very best:
1. Upon waking up, DO NOT CHECK EMAIL, TEXTS, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, OR INSTAGRAM -
I know, all caps is aggressive, but I’m trying to emphasis the importance of this one. I am confident we would all agree that waking up to technology is not only unhealthy, but it’s also unproductive and invaluable. I also know each of us would not want any of our beloved littles to start their day with it either, so why is it okay for us to do it and not them? The truth is when going straight to our phones to begin checking things, we’re immediately jumping into a stream of stress (email and to-do’s) as well as judgement, negativity and labeling (social media). What I’m not suggesting is to stop using social media all together, unless you feel the need. What I am recommending is we discipline ourselves to not start our day with it. Instead, let's at least wait until we’ve had our cup of coffee/tea, gotten kids off to school, taken an iGnite class, etc. I believe this will allow our body mind and spirit to wake up in peace rather than in chaos and anxiousness. So, let’s plan to replace the urge to grab our phones for email or social media with a giant and conscious pause and stretch, followed with deep breathing, gratitude and/or prayer. I know this recommendation is very cliche, but getting into this habit it can change our mornings, our attitude and daily trajectory to clarity, awareness, positivity, productivity and gratitude--something I know we all need and translates into happiness and satisfaction. (If you really want to go crazy, avoid looking at your phone at least 30 minutes before going to bed).
2. Treat Yourself! Regardless if you have children going back to school or not, give yourself a "change of season treat!" I am typically the worst at treating myself but when my kiddos started school last Friday I treated myself to a celebratory 90-minute massage. Whatever feels like a treat to you, go for it and enjoy the heck out of it. You deserve it! And don't forget, those indulgent treats are self-care, so be sure to continue to make them a priority. Make them a habit!
3. iGnite as soon as possible and as often as you can. I understand that transitions take time, but try not to let the transition from summer travel to school year/fall detour you for too long. Selfishly we want you to iGnite because we love being with you, but more importantly, everything we are doing in iGnite is improving the quality of your life and fighting disease, especially Alzheimer's Disease. Sadly, we all have a connection to Alzheimer's. Personally, I have two dear friends whose young moms are suffering. When talking to one of my friends about the disease she informed me that everything we do in iGnite is Alzheimer’s prevention. As a result of my two friends dealing with this devastating disease, I have become more interested and am doing my own research. What research tells us is that our lifestyle plays a significant role in our brain health. Per the recent TIME Magazine featuring The Science of Alzheimer’s, study after study is showing that specific lifestyle choices help the prevention of Alzheimer's. They are:
Exercise- Reducing the risk of heart disease through exercise and physical activity reduces the risk and severity of cognitive decline. Aerobic exercise has been shown to grow the volume of certain brain regions that tend to shrink during aging.
Learning New Things- Engaging intellectually through activities like writing letters and reading, has been linked in brain autopsies to better cognitive health in old age.
Being Social- Richer social lives are associated with hight levels of cognition. Loneliness, conversely, is connected with poorer brain health.
Here's to a season of optimal health, clarity, productivity, friendship and total satisfaction. It's going to be great!
Replace waking up and looking at your phone with a deep breath, stretch, prayer and gratitude; treat yourself; and iGnite as much as possible (at least three times each week).
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