Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!

Posts tagged ‘productivity’

6 Morning Habits You Need to Dig Into

6 Morning Habits You Need to Dig Into

Stop snoozing. You and your snooze button have quite the relationship, but it would be better if you got up as soon as your alarm goes off. It may take some serious discipline at first, but the snooze disturbs sleep often enough to make you feel more tired than if you had simply awoken, albeit a little groggy, on time. If you fall back into deep sleep and the snooze interrupts your cycle, you will be worse off. Don’t talk yourself out of it, just get up when your alarm tells you to. If you get really good, try using your internal clock to wake up, not an alarm, for better circadian rhythms.

Wake up early. The early bird gets the worm. There is a reason that sayings like this exist. Rising with the sun encourages creativity, productivity, and motivation. Waking up with a positive view of the quiet world is a gift. Likewise, this means going to bed earlier, as skimping on sleep is not the answer. Waking up with the sun is also great for balancing your hormones, as the sunlight hitting initiates all sorts of hormonal responses –like shutting down sleep-inducing melatonin production — that are essential for internal balance.

Take a deep breath and check in with yourself. The first thing you should do, once you’ve sat up out of bed, is a take a few deep inhalations to check in and ground yourself for the day. Take 10 breaths and clear your mind. Step outside onto your deck if you have one and feel the crisp morning air caress your face. Take your time and enjoy the quietude of morning before you bustle off to work or peruse the internet.

Get some exercise. Whether it’s 15 minutes of yoga/stretching or an hour long jog, working out in the morning has some major perks. It gets your blood flowing and helps you become more awake and energized throughout the day. It also ensures that you fit in some form of physical activity without getting stressed or too busy. Once you’ve exercised, your day will seem to open up with ample energy and less stress.

Drink warm water with lemon before coffee. If the first thing you do when you wake up if brew a pot of joe, try this instead. Not only will it wake you up on a more natural level than caffeine, but it will hydrate your dehydrated body and gently arouse your digestive system. Water in the morning also boasts other benefits, like clearer skin, better weight maintenance, increased nutrient absorption, and balanced lymph.

Eat when you’re hungry. There’s no need to shove breakfast into your mouth the second you awaken. Sure, many seem to say that eating breakfast within an hour of waking is important, but if you aren’t hungry or have a hard time eating that early, don’t sweat it. Your body will tell you when it’s time for food. Let it complete its nighttime clean-up before you overwhelm your digestive system with a hearty meal. Your body WILL survive in the interim.

Not everyone is a morning person. If you are a night owl and regularly stay up well past midnight working or unwinding, then so be it. But for most with traditional 9 to 5 jobs, waking up even an hour earlier could jumpstart their energy and productivity, allowing them to relax and de-stress at night. Seize your day! Utilize the morning hours and feel great all day.

By Jordan Cormier

Jordyn is a choreographer, freelance writer, and an avid outdoors woman. Having received her B.F.A. in Contemporary Dance from the Boston Conservatory, she is passionate about maintaining a healthy body, mind, and soul through food and fitness. A lover of adventure, Jordyn can often be found hiking, canoeing, mountain biking, and making herself at home in the backcountry! Check out what else Jordyn has been up to at jordyncormier.com.

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Would feeling fantastic every day make a difference in your life?  

Healthy Highway is a Healthy Lifestyle Company offering Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!   We help people who are…

  • Wanting Work Life Balance.
  • Needing Stress Relief.
  • Concerned about their health and the environment.
  • Frustrated battling allergies to gluten, foods, dust, chemicals, pollen.
  • Overwhelmed with choosing the best products for their body, home, and office.
  • Unsatisfied with their relationships with the men and women in their life and are ready to transform them into satisfying, happy partnerships.
  • Standing at a Career Crossroad.
  • Preparing to start a family and want a healthy baby.
  • Seeking solutions for aging, more energy, and a good night’s sleep!

Are any of these an issue or problem for you?  Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your needs and how HealthyHighway can meet them? As a Healthy Lifestyle Coach with an emphasis on allergies and wellness, Leesa teaches her clients to make informed choices and enables them to make needed changes for a Happy Healthy Lifestyle. What you eat, what products you use ~ on your body and in your home and office, how you talk to yourself ~ it all matters!

Contact me today and Start today to live a healthier, happier life!  Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem.  We do virtual coaching worldwide!

I look forward to helping YOU Live a Happy Healthy Life!  Remember, Excellent Health is found along your way, not just at your destination.

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author of two books…
     Melodies from Within ~ Available Now! 

Member Inernational Association for Health Coaches 

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.healthyighway.org

coach, consult, contact ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

(Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem!  We do virtual coaching worldwide!)

join our mailing list ~ www.healthyhighway.org

chcws ~ www.chews4health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn   www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~ www.google.com/+HealthyhighwayOrg

join ~ www.google.com/+LeesaWheeler

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

skpe ~ healthyhighway

How to Achieve Happiness…10 Proven Happiness Hacks

Leesa - Author Photo for Live Well 5-2014
I’d be willing to bet you recognize at least 3 of these names if not all.Friedriech Nietzhche. Plato. Seneca. Socrates. Daniel Gilbert. Marcus Aurelius. Other philosophers. Recent scientists. Neuroscientists, even. They’ve covered the gamut of the meaning of life, happiness and what makes human beings tick. It’s kind of a big deal. And for good reason. Humans are the only species we know with such self awareness. More than ever, people are asking the deeper questions in life and are interested in creating more well-being and happiness in their life. And they want it yesterday.Still, we’re not going to get into a philosophical ramble here. That’s been overdone and isn’t really my forte. We’ll dig deep into the how you can hack your happiness. We’ll also look at why these tactics work so you can apply them in your own life.Treat these ideas and tactics like a buffet. The kind you can’t really get enough of. Bookmark this page to revisit when you’re feeling less than happy so you’ve got a list of actions at your disposal.  Reading this post without action is a kind of mental masturbation. Of course, you’re not someone who indulges in that, are you?  Good. As you read these ideas – pick one thing you can implement in the next 25 minutes. It could be scheduling dinner, calling up a friend to set up accountability or scheduling a visit to the gym. It doesn’t matter. The foundation of all success is based on action. The action items are italicized to save you time.

Let’s get started, shall we?

  1. Practice of Gratitude

    If there’s one piece of tested advice that scientists and all religions agree on, it’s this. And the emphasis is on the first word. Practice. Practice leads to habit. And contrary to popular belief, practice doesn’t make perfect. It makes permanent.

    Gratitude is the experience of counting one’s blessings. And how you practice it makes a real difference. Some people express it to other people. Some people do it in their mind. Some people write it down. And it’s proven that if gratitude is written down and shared with others, it makes a stronger impact.

    So how to practice gratitude? There are many ways. I’ll give you a simple example. Write down three things you are grateful for as soon as you wake up. 

    Also known as keeping a gratitude journal, this small but simple habit can make a massive difference in your day. Test it out. You can use a ready-to-use format as we provide at The Five Minute Journal (www.fiveminutejournal.com) or you can write it down in a blank notebook.

  2. Pay Attention to What You Eat

    When traveling in Thailand, I met somebody who made a big difference on the way I think about food and happiness. We were talking about the different ways people eat, their approach to dieting whether it be vegan or paleo. And then he said something that I’ll remember.

    “One thing I’ve always noticed. The more discernment people pay to what and how they eat, the happier they are.”   

    Not from a gluttonous perspective. From a is-this-going-to-make-my-life-better perspective.

    That’s true for many reasons. We are what we eat. Put a different way, the food you eat affects your biochemistry. And your neurochemistry. Happiness, as it turns out is a neurochemical phenomenon.

    There’s good evidence that identifying what foods make you feel good in the long term can affect your well-being and happiness significantly.    There are a few ways of doing this – the best way to start is food experiments. Quit sugar for a month and see how it makes you feel (after a month, not the next afternoon!).

  3. Cultivate Great Friendships

    The single greatest impact on your happiness is the quality and number of your close ties. In other words – your spouse/partner and your friends. The research makes it clear. If you want to be happier, make more money and live longer – have wonderfully close ties.

    Evaluate the quality and quantity of your friendships
    . Your relationships. You’ve probably heard this enough times, but it bears repeating. You are the average of your five closest friends. Choose wisely. And cultivate great friendships.

    Cultivating a friendship is very similar to cultivating a garden. It requires care, honesty and the willingness to move through the discomfort (of a difficult conversation, for example). I believe the ability to have difficult conversations and be able to handle confrontations peacefully is one of the best skills to acquire for this.

  4. Get Moving!

    When was the last time you weren’t feeling so good? Do you remember? You can probably relate to the words sluggish, disheartened and dissatisfied. How long did you stay in that emotional state?

    Want to know Richard Branson’s secret for being productive? Work out.

    Here’s a tip to get your feeling better almost immediately. Get moving. Walk. Run. Job. Lift weights. Cycle. Have (safe and consensual) sex. You get the point.

    You can never think your way out of an emotional problem. You’ve gotta change the way you feel. And moving your body is great way of doing that.

    What’s a physical activity that you enjoy? Schedule it now. And make sure you do it early and often.

  5. Do Great Work

    This one sounds like a motivational poster but let me explain. Have you heard people remark often that ‘life is short’? They’re wrong.

    Life’s short when you’re having fun and long when you’re not. And you’re going to have a long life if you don’t find out what you’re good at and find a viable way to incorporate that in your life. How to find out what you’re good at is the subject of another course and I trust we’ll get to it soon enough.

    But finding out what you’re good at and making sure you’re improving on that everyday is a surefire way to enjoy most of your life. This has nothing to do with fame, fortune or external rewards. It’s got to do with developing and your reputation with yourself. And the best way to develop that is to develop a great work ethic built on a powerful vision for the future.

  6. Meditate

    What was once a hippie trend has some serious science backing it in the last 10 years. This one is my personal favourite. It’s a great way to get clarity, increase awareness and (staying on point) improving happiness.

    It’s because what meditation does on a neurological basis is improve whole-brain thinking. Long-term meditation is like drugs. You have no idea how good you’re going to feel unless you do it. Thankfully, meditation is much safer and healthier for you.

    The best way to get started is to join a meditation club or course. There’s almost nobody I know who hasn’t gotten started on a serious meditation practice without a course or the support of peers. So stop telling yourself “I need to meditate” and sign up for a course 🙂

  7. Be Authentic

    Brad Blanton wrote a book about Radical Honesty about a decade or so ago about being incredibly transparent with everybody you know – your partner, friends, family even strangers. Needless to say, it’s hilarious and a novel idea. But he makes a point that a lot of people miss.

    Shame is the opposite of being authentic. The less authentic you are, the less happy you will be. And the vulnerable and open you allow yourself to be in the company of others. The more free you feel to ‘be yourself’ and act from your core the happier you will be. The less self-conscious you will be. The closer you will feel with friends and family. And on and on.

    Is there something personal you feel uncomfortable sharing with close friends/family? Consider sharing it. 


    Consider picking up Daring Greatly by Brene Brown.

  8. Schedule a Weekly Dinner with Close Friends

    You’ll be surprised how much this simple tip can change your life. The logistics are simple – contact between 3-8 close friends and schedule a weekly dinner at a place where you won’t have to worry about overstaying. 

    Let the food and drink flow freely. Ban cellphones. And most of all, laugh often.

    Laughing with close friends is one of the greatest experiences in life. It’s right up there with great sex and probably right below nirvana.

  9. Develop the Habit of Introspection

    What do you think separates the human animal from other animals? Self awareness. The ability to be aware and contemplate our existence. Wax philosophy. Think strategy. Etcetera.

    This self awareness is a gift. It allows us to think about “How can I be happier?”   

    Introspection is using your thinking to understand yourself better. And it usually leads to better behaviour and a better life. It’s as simple as asking yourself at the end of the day – “What would I have done differently today if I could do it all over again?

    Most high-level athletes keep Journals of their training, how they feel, what they ate, etc. in order for better self knowledge. The more you know yourself, the happier you will be.

  10. Make Your Choices Count

    The quality of your life is the result of the quality of your choices. Everyday, you take several choices that can move you toward or away from the future you want. The trick is to be aware of them.    A while ago, I read an article by the famous psychologist Abraham Maslow who is best known for his work on the hierarchy of human needs. He wrote this article at the end of his career when he’d assimilated a lifetime of data comparing those who were self-actualized (experiencing the pinnacle of happiness and actualization of their potential). After reading through thousands of papers, going through an entire lifetime of studying and assimilating what made these people different from the rest of us he came to a remarkably simple conclusion.    Everyday we make several choices. Every choice we make have the potential to either be better or harmful for us in the long term. The choices that are better for us in the long term can be called ‘conscious decisions to grow’ Self actualized people make significantly more conscious decisions to grow than the rest of us.    Making conscious decisions can help you expand your comfort zone or doing something that scares you everyday. Most importantly, conscious choices will help you to take the responsibility for your happiness solely in your hands and actions. 

By UJ Ramdas

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Would feeling fantastic every day make a difference in your life?  Healthy Highway is a Healthy Lifestyle Company offering Lifestyle Solutions for a Happy Healthy You!   We help people who are…

  • Wanting Work Life Balance.
  • Needing Stress Relief.
  • Concerned about their health and the environment.
  • Frustrated battling allergies to gluten, foods, dust, chemicals, pollen.
  • Overwhelmed with choosing the best products for their body, home, and office.
  • Unsatisfied with their relationships with the men and women in their life and are ready to transform them into satisfying, happy partnerships.
  • Standing at a Career Crossroad.
  • Preparing to start a family and want a healthy baby.
  • Seeking solutions for aging, more energy, and a good night’s sleep!

Are any of these an issue or problem for you?  Would it make sense for us to spend several minutes together to discuss your needs and how HealthyHighway can meet them? As a Healthy Lifestyle Coach with an emphasis on allergies and wellness, Leesa teaches her clients to make informed choices and enables them to make needed changes for a Happy Healthy Lifestyle. What you eat, what products you use ~ on your body and in your home and office, how you talk to yourself ~ it all matters!

Contact me today and Start today to live a healthier, happier life!  Don’t live in Atlanta?  Not a problem.  We do virtual coaching worldwide!

I look forward to helping YOU Live a Happy Healthy Life!  Remember, Excellent Health is found along your way, not just at your destination. 

Live Well!

Leesa A. Wheeler

Leesa A. Wheeler

Healthy Lifestyle Coach, Artisan, Author of two books…

Member International Health Coach Association

ring ~ 770-393-1284

write ~ info@healthyhighway.org

visit ~ www.healthyighway.org

consult/coach ~ www.healthyhighway.org/contact.html

join our mailing list ~ www.healthyhighway.org

chews ~ www.chews4health.com/Leesa

enjoy ~ www.chewcolat.com

follow ~ www.twitter.com/HealthyHighway

learn   www.healthyhighway.wordpress.com

like ~ www.tinyurl.com/Facebook-HealthyHighway

join ~ www.google.com/+HealthyhighwayOrg

join ~ www.google.com/+LeesaWheeler

link ~ www.linkedin.com/in/leesawheeler

skpe ~ healthyhighway

5 Super Simple Ways to Be More Productive

5 Super Simple Ways to Be More Productive

 

Sometimes it feels like there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get  everything done. And while that may be true to a certain extent, for many of us,  what it really boils down to is that we just aren’t using the time we have as  productively as we could. Luckily, there are several small and painless ways to  get around that. Click through for simple strategies to boost your productivity.  Share your own tips in the comments!

 

 

1. Take a Power Nap.

Several studies have championed the power of the mid-afternoon nap. A 15-20  minute power nap will help you recharge and refocus your energy, as well as  improve your ability to learn and remember information. (The Power Nap: Tips & Benefits)

 

2. Eat Right.

They don’t call it the most important meal of the day for nothing! Skipping  breakfast negatively impacts your focus, productivity, and memory. Keeping your  body fueled throughout the day is important, too. Load up on fresh fruits and  veggies, whole grains, nuts, and even the occasional dark chocolate to keep your  brain at full working capacity. Be sure to drink plenty of water, too!

 

3. Take a Walk… Or a Shower.

In our hyper-connected  world, there are fewer and fewer times in our day when we can just take time to  clear our thoughts. Which is unfortunate, because, often times, this is when our  best ideas come to light. If you’re stuck in a rut, go out for a quick stroll  around the block or, if you can, hop in the shower. You’ll recharge, refresh and  benefit nicely from a change of pace — one study showed a huge jumps in  creativity and productivity when workers took shower breaks during the  day

 

4. Change Lighting & Temperature.

It’s not just habits that can boost your productivity — it’s also your  environment. One Department of Energy study, for instance, found that workers in  offices with exposure to daylight had better health, fewer absences, and, yes,  increased productivity, than workers who were not exposed to daylight.  Temperature plays a role here, too. Rooms that varied too much far from 77  degrees will hinder your ability to get stuff done. Use a fan or an air  conditioner in the summer, and a space heater or a sweater in the winter, to  keep your body at an optimal temperature.

 

5. Look at Photos of  Cute Things.

Don’t mind if I do! Researchers in Japan found that, after viewing pictures  of adorable animals, babies, and other cute things, participants’ concentration  shot up by a whopping 44%. Why, exactly? Well, researchers think it connects to  our natural urge to nurture and protect adorable, harmless creatures — a task  that requires plenty of concentration.

By Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A  Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives  in Oakland, California.

 

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