This summer reach your wellness goals in 5 easy steps:
1. Go somewhere that helps you to switch off and recharge
Travelling outside your home gives you the opportunity to step away from the daily grind. The new events and experiences help rewire your brain, hence boosting your mood and self-confidence. It also enhances your creativity in times when you may be feeling stuck.
For a day out try one of the following:
a nice coffee shop with a good view
a walk in a forest, by a lake, or along a river
visit your local library
exploring a city
visit a museum
For a longer stay:
explore somewhere new for one night or more. Check out some recommended places by country file
2. Participate in fitness of any kind for 30 minutes a day
Even small changes to your daily routine can make a big impact on your health. And, if you stick to them, they can help you start a new, healthier lifestyle. The endorphins released during exercise not only help you feel better - they help you think better too. Better concentration and mental sharpness are just two of the many cognitive benefits of physical activity. With longer days ahead, step out for a walk first thing in the morning, join a yoga class in the park, cycle to your favourite places. Check your local community fitness activities, you will find plenty of groups to join.
3. Eat local and fresh in all meals
They are so many benefits of eating locally - first of all it's good for the environment as local food doesn't have to travel as far to arrive on your plate, so it helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contributes to improving our carbon footprints. It benefits the local economy, including supporting local farmers and other producers.
So stroll down your local farmer's market and help yourself with a vibrant array of fresh, seasonal produce. The freshest ingredients tend to produce the best-tasting dishes, and most importantly they are often more nutritious. Vitamin C, an important water-soluble nutrient that's necessary for healthy skin and tissues, begins to degrade in fresh fruits and veggies shortly after harvesting.
What’s more, the antioxidant content of some produce declines during storage. Getting antioxidants from foods is important to fight reactive molecules called free radicals that contribute to disease. However, all types of fruits and veggies — fresh or frozen, local or nonlocal — provide important nutrients and are good additions to your diet.
Lastly, If you shop at farmers markets or local food co-ops, you’ll likely be introduced to a new or unique food that’s grown in your area.
If you’re interested in reaping these benefits, start looking for farmers markets or CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) that service your area. Check here
4. Go for a long walk in nature
Going for walks outside was one of the most popular coping mechanisms – with 45% of us reporting that green spaces have been essential for our mental health. Regardless of age or culture, spending time in nature holds an overwhelming appeal, with research suggesting that over 90% of us would imagine ourselves in a natural setting when asked to think of a place where we feel relaxed or calm.
Nature can reduce stress, anxiety and depression - it helps soothe pain, enhance wellbeing and improves our ability to pay attention.
Need inspiration? Check out the 100 favourite UK walks from the National Trust.
5. Spend time with people you love
Loved ones give you motivation to be the best version of yourself. Spending time with people you love helps improve overall mental health. Socialisation increases the feeling of well-being, safety and happiness. So ditch your phone and your laptop, and commit to spending quality time with friends and family. And if distance is an issue, then make sure to use technology efficiently to keep in touch with those far away loved ones and keep the connection alive.