This is a guest post by Gabriel Patel from healthwellwise.com.
How many times have you tried to make big lifestyle changes that only wind up lasting a few weeks before you fall back into your old habits? Don’t feel guilty or judged — most people experience this cycle when trying new self-care habits and often wind up spending money on items we stop using or gimmicks that don’t really help us at all in the long term. These lifestyle changes are important; otherwise, you wouldn’t try so hard to make them. It’s time to find a way to make them stick without spending money that you might regret.
The fact of the matter is — it’s not what you’re trying to change, but how you’re trying to change it. Nine times out of 10, we start out with lofty goals, ones that require so much immediate sacrifice and a financial commitment that it’s impossible to maintain. When we go about it this way, we fail before we even begin. A slow change may be one where you see less immediate results, but the ones you do see are more sustainable. Plus, slow changes spread out over time can be more affordable. Want to make some major life changes without breaking the bank? Here are a few budget-friendly tips on how to make small steps add up to big results.
Getting healthy is the number one New Year’s resolution — and it is also the most challenging one. One of the easiest ways to make sure you stick to your fitness goals is to mix it up. Don’t just stick with one type of exercise — such as running or lifting weights — because you’ll get burned out quickly. If you decide to exercise five days a week, plan to cycle through good cardio activities like running, biking or swimming, along with group fitness classes like yoga, TRX, or Zumba. You can save money on purchasing the necessary clothes, shoes, and equipment by using Amazon promo codes, or pick up second-hand gear at used sporting goods retailers (Play It Again Sports, for example, offers plenty of great deals).
We all know mindfulness is very important. Practicing mindfulness helps us manage negative emotions and work through unhealthy behaviors. That said, it’s a daily practice and that’s always easier said than done. So, start small. Spend five minutes in the morning simply sitting and listening to your breath. After a few weeks of that, try 10 minutes. You can expand your experience by heading online to purchase relaxing aromatherapy diffusers or soothing instrumental music. You can also learn different techniques or practice meditating longer by using an app on your phone or tablet. There are dozens of free ones out there, but some of the most popular ones are Headspace, Calm, and Omvana.
Taking steps to better manage stress can have a huge impact on every area of your life. Whether you work on tight deadlines or juggle schedules for multiple children (or maybe both), stress can make you feel miserable during parts of your day you used to enjoy. Since you can’t just ignore these responsibilities, what you need is balance. That’s where self-care comes in. Carve out 15 to 30 minutes a day just for you — read a book, play with your dog, or do any activity that helps you feel relaxed, at ease, and joyful. You can look for discounts on services like facials, massages, or reflexology by searching for spas that offer money-saving discounts.
Making healthy lifestyle changes is an important mental and physical health goal, which is why many of us need to be able to follow through. Taking smaller steps and celebrating mini successes along the way will help make big changes seem a lot easier.
Please leave a comment and let me know if you have any stories or questions.
A note about comments:
Please keep in mind that all comments are moderated to ensure mutual respect. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.
photo credit: bruce mars from Pexels