Men find themselves living in a time when they are expected to be rough and tumble yet soft and gentle. Males are told to gain work/life balance and yet they may find themselves in organizations or professions that espouse balance but where the expectation is to be available 24/7/365.
Pressures take a toll in physical, psychological and emotional ways. Here are six realistic, tried-and-true mind/body approaches for a healthier, happier life:
Or find yourself stopped by heart issues, depression, sudden loss of meaning or other serious issues. Instead, brief interventions of pausing for 2-5 minutes during the day in order to simply breathe can reduce your stress level. Harvard studies show that slow, deep breathing can have a profound effect on stress by calming the physiology. Take a breath of fresh air and find yourself renewed!
2. Take a technology break
The speed and availability of technology is both a blessing and a bane. Where can you briefly detach from your cellphone or laptop? The human brain is not meant to process multiple, in-flowing streams of data constantly. Turning off the phone or walking away from the computer can calm excitatory waves in the brain. This simple strategy prevents bad decisions and feelings of overwhelm. Get outside and have a little summertime fun!
You knew this would be in the mix. Exercise helps to channel testosterone in a healthy way and reduces tension and edginess. And exercise boosts the antidepressant serotonin allowing more feelings of well-being. Sustained physical activity stimulates endorphins, natural painkillers which lowers aches and pains. The physical benefits of exercise such as blood pressure regulation, bone strengthening and weight control are indisputable. Summertime invites movement so why not take it outdoors? Every little bit counts!
This has been described as unstructured time. That means not doing chores! It means just being. This may seem like a far-out concept but very helpful to the mind and body. What would be fun? It doesn’t need to cost money or require much time. Play triggers the reset button in terms of clarity and creativity which leads to greater levels of satisfaction. Get out in nature. Nature lifts our health and happiness. Allow the kids in your life to guide the way!
There is an adult resistance to indulging in a good laugh as it may be associated with silliness and non-productivity. However, through the process of laughing, stress hormones are reduced and immune cells are boosted. Taking time to step back and gain a lighter perspective through a laughter break allows the body to heal and the mood to improve. Inside or outdoors, this is a wonderful, inexpensive tool!
6. Health Habit
What is one (1) small step you can integrate into your day to skillfully improve your health? A daily walk, a nutritious meal, or a meditation session can be simple, effective means to better health!
As a certified health coach and mindfulness teacher, I educate my clients that the point of power is always in the present moment. There’s no time like the present! Incorporating these simple practices will make for healthier, happier men and today is a great time to start.
Invite me to speak at your next event on Healthy, Happy Strategies for Men!
For a free download of our CALM body scan and meditation, click Mindfulness Body Scan and Meditation
To contact me about health and life coaching, visit pathtobestself.com or email me at email@example.com.