Guest blog: Reach Your Better Self: A Self-Improvement Guide for 2018


By Jennifer Scott

CaptureDon’t fall into the trap of thinking that the better version of yourself is unattainable, out of reach, or a fantasy. You can improve yourself and reach your potential. It is not impossible or far-fetched. Begin by caring for yourself and achieving balance in various aspects of your life.
According to Psychology Today, a concept known as self-love is important to living well. It affects the way you see the world and how you cope with the world’s challenges. The state of loving oneself involves engaging in actions that support physical, emotional, and spiritual health. Caring for oneself is vital when setting and achieving personal and professional goals.

Physical Health

Exercise
Find a kind of exercise or sport that appeals to your personality, lifestyle, and schedule. Look into a variety of options and stay open to new opportunities:
Gym membership. Join a traditional gym and commit to a certain schedule per week. This is a great way to begin if you haven’t exercised in some time because you can go at your own pace.

Try a new sport. Find out if your local recreation center has adult sports teams you can join. Joining a team sport can not only provide some fun social interaction in a new setting, but it helps people commit to schedule.

Try out a class. There are many schools and academies in your area that offer free classes to try out their programs. Sign up for a free dance class, martial arts lesson, or yoga session. Trying it out beforehand will give you a taste of what to expect.

LiveScience recommends starting off slow and gradually working your way up. Make sure to be honest about your current fitness level to avoid injury, and set goals for yourself to stay motivated.

Loving yourself also means staying away from behavior and substances that harm you. Exercise has recently emerged as a great companion to addiction recovery. The National Institute of Health cites that aerobic exercise can help people that abuse illicit drugs. Physical activity releases endorphins in the brain which produce a “high” feeling and help in restoring a balance in the brain. It aids in promoting feelings of positivity, improved mood, and better sleep.

Change Your Fuel

Diet is key. Many people often cite a lack of time as an impediment to eating better. However, establishing good eating habits and avoiding fast food doesn’t have to be that difficult. All it takes is a little organization and a nutritional plan:

  • Meal planning: Take one day a week for bulk cooking, and freeze portions that you can eat throughout the week. Make sure your meals are well balanced with protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats.
  • Plan trips to the store: Do not shop while hungry. Plan your grocery trips, follow the list based on your meal plans, and do not buy junk food or sugary stuff.
  • Eat anti-inflammatory foods: Inflammation is a generator of pain, infections, injuries, and bad moods. Eat a diet high in Omega 3 fatty acids to ward off inflammation and stay away from refined carbohydrates like french fries.

Follow Your Passions

The source of many people’s unhappiness often stems from a sense of unfulfillment. People give up on their passions for a variety of reasons. Generally people who pursue their hobbies and passions are happier and more productive. So don’t be afraid to pursue the hobby that keeps you happy and engaged.

Little Acts of Self-Love

A big part of caring for yourself is to spoil yourself when you achieve a goal or are successful in a particular area of your life. Treat yourself to a massage, visit a spa, or update your wardrobe. Small little acts of kindness toward yourself keep you motivated by providing positive reinforcement that keeps you disciplined and focused.
The best version of you is waiting to be be unleashed. Write down your goals and commit to them on paper. As you cross things off your list, you’ll find yourself feeling empowered and confident to take anything on. This year, reach your better self through a little self-care, discipline, and consistency.
Photo Credit: Pixabay

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Putting Things in Perspective


Ever since we learned how to talk, it was imperative to tell people how old we were, “I am Two”,  “I am three and a half”. Of course, when children say it, it sounds so cute. As we get older, we start measuring things in the same exact way we did as children, using years, days and months; which seems the only normal way of doing things.

We make this much money a year, we will retire at this age or in this many years. All seemed going smoothly until we discovered that animal years are different from that of a human. For instance, a 14 years old dog is considered to be like an 82 years old man in human years. So when we look at a dog that is 14 years old, he might be thinking “This human is more like a dinosaur, he is at least 200-250 years old”, right?

So we just did a comparison between two living organisms, the human being and the dog. We can definitely expand the list to include mammals, fish and all sorts of other species.

Now the fun part begins. I think by now you might have an idea of what I am proposing. Let us compare our human years to the years in heaven. Are they the same? Are they different? Well, what if they’re different. What if one day in heaven is equivalent to one year on earth? What if one day equates to 100 or a million years?

Now here’s where the scary thought really is. What if God has a day off?

If our time here on earth is relatively equal to heaven’s time, then we risk an entire 24 hour without any divine interference due to God’s day off. Think globally now! Galaxies, planets etc… Everything is hanging by a thread.

If our time here on earth is vastly different from heaven’s time, then what? If our earthly 100 years equate to one day, and that happens to be the day God decided to have a day off, then what? Then the fun begins. Do you really want to be around on God’s day off?

You would pray to God, but he’s not listening because it’s his day off. Try praying in a 100 years when he’s available.

P.S: I am not saying that God has a day off. I am not trying to insult anyone, but I’m simply trying to put things in perspective. Be grateful to what you have.