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In our post about healthy habits, we highlighted the healthy habits that one should adopt during exams, such as better sleeping patterns, exercise, eating healthy, and drawing up mini schedules.
It is important that we remember that building healthy habits extends far beyond university and exam season. In order to live long, happy, successful, and healthy lives it is paramount that we avoid taking shortcuts with our well-being. Due to the demands of everyday life, whether it be work, school, or personal problems – many of us lead very stressful and anxiety-inducing lives.
One thing is sure about life – the obstacles and impediments never end, unfortunately. However, the important factor is how we respond to these and the ways in which we build and maintain our psychological resilience.
According to a Harvard psychologist and philosopher, the word habits is used to describe what makes up our daily lives. The time between waking up in the morning and going to bed in the evening is filled with countless actions and choices which are considered habits. Habits are the automatic behavioural responses that we each have to environmental triggers.
Throughout our lives, we all build habits through consistent actions. Habits can be good or bad depending on the impact they have on your quality of life. Healthy habits are behaviours that are beneficial to one’s physical or mental health and are often linked to high discipline and self-control. Building healthy habits refers to doing something that is good for you consistently and subconsciously until you successfully include it in your everyday routine.
The importance of healthy habits
The habits we form throughout our lives have the power to make or break our chances at a more holistic well-being and also promote our endurance. Healthy habits are formed by acquiring experiences that lead to the creation and organization of neuron connections, which are what form connections in our brains. The habits are then repeated over time until they are fully acquired and can be performed subconsciously.
As humans, we rely heavily on healthy habits to not only perform but to manage the pressures of our daily lives.
The best way to build and maintain healthy habits in your life is through lifestyle changes. Lifestyle changes are behaviour modifications that encourage positive change in one’s life. They are linked to sleeping patterns, eating habits, and exercise.
There are primarily three categories of lifestyle changes: namely psychological, behavioural, and dietary changes.
Psychological changes refer to changes in our attitudes, mood, and the way we manage stress. Some of the ways one can make healthy psychological changes are to keep a journal, start seeing a therapist or join a support group.
Behavioural changes refer to sleeping habits and exercise. The importance of exercise, sleep, and eating healthy are all interlinked because the food we eat, the amount of sleep we get, and how often we exercise all influence our weight as well as hormone and gut health.
Lastly, dietary changes include making healthier food choices such as replacing soda with water, eating fewer carbohydrates and sugar as well as piling up on vegetables and nuts.
Building healthy habits requires practice and consistency. The first step is to introspect and identify some of your behaviours that need improvement and work on replacing them with healthier habits.
Building healthy habits can be challenging but it is an undeniably rewarding way to invest in yourself!