Creating Change For Healthier Living
Are you struggling to make real progress with your life goals? Maybe you’re on the right track, but you’re not seeing results yet. Or worse yet, you’ve bought into the latest gimmick and you’re struggling through all of the complicated steps.
The truth is that there are lots of techniques and tools out there for optimizing your life, but the little things you’re doing every single day matter way more than your big picture success strategy. You don’t need a drastic overhaul. You might just need a switch here and there.
Let’s get right into it.
1. Switch Out Streaming for More Sleep
It is so easy to spend long hours watching Netflix. Often, people start watching a series and stay up much later than they expected watching more episodes. Those darn cliffhangers get you every time. Another reason is availability. With so much content on demand, it can be difficult to resist the temptation of watching just one more episode.
According to market data from Netflix, the streaming service witnessed a 40% increase in viewership when the US went into lockdown restrictions in 2020. On average, users watch about 3 hours of Netflix videos per day.
This behavior can really put a dent in your sleep time if you’re not careful. Your body needs sleep to regenerate cells, heal unseen damage and refresh your mind and body for the upcoming day. So, set limits on how much time you spend watching Netflix and other streaming services at night. Try to have a definite cut-off time and get six to eight hours of quality sleep every night.
2. Switch Out Delivery Food for Home Cooking
Delivery apps are great, aren’t they? You can whip out your smartphone, scroll through some options, and your takeout order arrives at your door in minutes. It’s a fast and streamlined way to eat some great food, but it can be costly and difficult to maintain your nutrition goals.
Takeout food often has more salt, sugar, and more processed ingredients than anything you would prepare for yourself at home. But if you just can’t say no to takeaway, then try to avoid the sauces. Choose more veggies instead and avoid processed meats like bacon and sausage. They might contain more than double your daily intake value for salt.
A 2021 study by Elsevier that was published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found that eating takeaway food and dining out increased a person’s likelihood of dying early. Researchers found that their study participants had an increase in obesity, diabetes, and biomarkers of other chronic diseases, as well.
Cooking at home helps you keep your diet in check because it slows everything down. When you cook your own food, you sacrifice more time and effort, but save money along the way and that’s one small change that can help you make better food choices. Try cooking at home more often than not, and you’ll be rewarded with healthier food options and more spare change in your pocket.
3. Switch Out Social Media Scrolling for More Online Learning
Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok – where does it all end? Well, it never ends and that’s the point. These social media apps are designed to keep you online all the time scrolling through an endless barrage of content. Oddly enough, it’s mind-numbing in a refreshing sort of way.
According to data from Statista, people in the US spend an average of just over 2 hours a day on social media. Perhaps, that wouldn’t make much of an impact on your wellbeing if it was in a single continuous session, but most people check their social media feed throughout the course of an entire day.
Why not swap out something that’s mind-numbing for something that is mind-enriching? You can learn a new language, pick-up a new skill or just read more fact-infused periodicals. That would be a much more productive usage of your time.
There are learning apps like Mondly that offer free foreign language studies. You can also find low-cost courses online that can even be used to gain real credentials to further your career. So, instead of watching a silly dance on TikTok, try finding a discounted online learning course on Udemy instead.
4. Switch Out Entitlement for Gratitude
This is a tricky one because it deals with intangible ways that you process information in your life. A sense of entitlement is a belief that you deserve something or a certain level of treatment even though you might not have earned it. Most people have some degree of entitlement, but it doesn’t serve us well in life.
People feel entitled to certain privileges and experiences due to their education, race, rank, and many other factors. You are entitled to some basic forms of respect and liberty, but problems arise when that feeling of entitlement is unmerited, unreasonable, or otherwise inappropriate.
So instead of focusing on what you deserve, try to shift your focus each day to a stance of gratitude. When you are grateful for your life, the people around you, the things that you own and the opportunity to share yourself with society, you operate from a totally different standpoint.
You become less irritable and agitated by circumstances. You develop more empathy for your fellow man and you’re more willing to see other peoples’ perspectives in conflicts. You also increase your level of personal satisfaction as you shed the notion that the world should be serving you more.
5. Switch Out Morning Snooze for Morning Meditation
Hitting the snooze button once or twice in the morning is so automatic that you barely even need to be conscious to do it. For most people, their smartphone doubles as their alarm clock and it’s located within arm’s reach of their bed. If your phone isn’t set properly, you might even oversleep or become so used to the sound of your alarm that it doesn’t even work anymore.
Yet why are you hitting the snooze button in the first place? Is it to get a few more minutes of rest? Well, according to sleep experts at the Cleveland Clinic, you’re actually robbing your body of restorative sleep by disrupting your sleep patterns. You can actually wind up feeling drowsier throughout the entire day as a result of it.
Try to remember the goal of hitting the snooze button. It’s to be more restful and alert for your day. Well, if you want to feel more rested, then set a time and stick to it. Try to place your alarm on the other side of the room so that you have to physically get out of bed to turn it off.
Then, start your day with some morning meditation. If you replace 15 minutes of snooze sleep with 15 minutes of mindful meditation, then you can organize your thoughts and intentions for the day. It provides a sense of well-being and focus that you might never achieve just by lying in bed.
What Type of Results Can You Expect?
When you prescribe to the latest fad strategy for improving your life, you have these big ideas in front of you that make changing your life seem like a complicated system. In reality, it’s all about being consistent day to day. These are simple tweaks to your daily grind that can produce real results.
By switching Netflix and streaming at night for more sleep, you’ll feel more refreshed and focused the following day. When you cook at home more than you eat takeaway you promote better health practices that could actually add years to your life.
Try spending less time on social media. The percentage of useless information that you find while you’re scrolling has a mind-numbing effect. Try taking an online learning course and spend your social media time improving your life.
Finally, practice a stance of gratitude and mindfulness. Say “thank you” more and meditate to produce a stillness in your mind. You’ll see opportunities clearer and appreciate the wealth of benefits you already have in your life. These five shifts in your daily routine can improve your life greatly and you’ll see results almost immediately.
Good luck and keep growing.