Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
Starting your health journey
When you are starting your health journey remember the saying, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” Changing is hard, especially if it’s changing your diet or relationship with food, but it may be necessary for the sake of your health. I have tried a number of diets, failing every time. I do get discouraged like anyone does, but the important thing is I don’t give up on trying to achieve my goals. I learn from it and press forward with a different, more educated perspective.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
For instance, I used to think weight is what I should focus on. Nope. Wrong I was. I discovered that was not the way to approach things. What matters is how you feel. I now focus on if I feel healthy, energized, and balanced. After trying a number of things again and adjusting, I found what works for me. Plus, just because you weigh more doesn’t mean you are more fat. You could have bulkier muscle or just be tall.
I began eating more whole plant foods, specifically fruits and vegetables. I experienced better moods and more energy. This in turn allowed me to be more productive. I haven’t lost weight or anything, but I feel healthier.
No matter what you are doing to be healthier, if you are experiencing ups and down in your journey toward that better quality of life, there are some tips you can try that’ll help you succeed.
What you can do: Healthy habits
According to Emily Trinh, adopting the following simple habits into your life can help you kickstart your health journey:
- Include incidental exercise— This is exercise you do in your daily activities, like walking
- Stretch/exercise while watching TV— Instead is sitting while watching TV, do some squats and tricep dips. You’re killing two birds with one stone
- Track it— Keeping track of your workouts can allow you to see how you’ve improved or haven’t so you can make adjustments as needed
- Plan it— In order to ensure you’re consistent, planning your gym time or meals can help you make it a lifestyle and follow through
- Choose water— Other drinks like soda can contain a lot of added sugars, water is the healthiest option and you’ll probably save money too
- Fill half your plate with veggies— Doing this will help you get the minimum daily serving of essential nutrients for your body
- Find support— All this is easier said than done, having a like-minded group or someone to support you and hold you accountable makes all the difference
Exercise can not only improve your physical health but your mental and emotional health too. Working out can boost your self-esteem, give you a sense of accomplishment, and improve your mood. Exercising could also increase positivity around you. When you exercise, you can listen to uplifting music or converse with friends. Everyone has the same general goal when working out—to be healthier.
Healthy Atelier says you should first check in how your body feels. You may have pain in certain areas, certain cravings, or have other symptoms like fatigue or poor mood. This can then help you determine the best route for you.
For example, if you have been experiencing eye strain or bad skin health lately, you can include more egg yolk, red peppers, mustard, broccoli, zucchini, corn, garden peas, spinach, leek, collard greens and kale in your diet. These foods contain the phytonutrient Lutein. Lutein acts as an antioxidant that offers eye protection, skin protection, and other benefits.
In terms of healthy eating, try to only eat what you need to provide fuel for your level of activity. If you consume more than your body needs, the excess is stored as fat. The good news is foods are not all the same when it comes to calories. If you want to eat more, you can. You just would have to eat foods that are lower in calories (like fruit or vegetables) so you can eat more of those foods, if you don’t want to put on weight.
In addition, food higher in fiber can help keep you full longer. And simply eating slower can also reduce the amount you eat. “Studies comparing different eating speeds show that fast eaters are up to 115% more likely to be obese than slow eaters,” provides Adda Bjarnadottir, MS, RDN (Ice).
It’s important to keep in mind that a healthy diet is not about strict limitations or depriving yourself of food, it is about getting to a point where you feel great and have better health. Avoid more of the unhealthy foods and eat more of the healthy stuff.
There are other changes you can make outside of diet and exercise too. Reducing stress, getting more sleep, and helping others can also help you become healthier. According to Kaden Johnson, one way you can do this is by decluttering your home.
Cleaning and organizing can be stress relieving as well as improve your quality of sleep. A cluttered bedroom can make it harder to relax and fall asleep, not to mention you’ll wake up in a more pleasant environment. Having a clean living space might also reduce the number of allergens and sickness causing elements such as dust, bugs, animal dander, and mold. You can also help others declutter, this social interaction can boost mood and improve relationships.
No matter what your goals are, you can succeed. Keep in mind the purpose of those goals and the benefits that can come from achieving them and you’ll have a much easier time finding the motivation to carry on. And no need to achieve them all at once, having smaller goals along the way can help encourage you to stick to your goals.
Take Gordon Tredgold’s advice and “aim high, but start low, celebrate, and keep going.” So believe in yourself, set realistic goals, and take small steps to meet them. And remember, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” You’ll be a happier, healthier you in no time.
About the Author
Erin Day is a professional writer who covers all things health. She contributes to a number of sites including HubPages, Medium, and more. You can see more of her work at erinday.net.