10 Completely Free Ways To Incorporate Wellness Into Your Every Day
By Marilee Nelson |
Wellness is a state of being healthy in the mind, body and soul. It’s about creating a lifestyle of positive behavioral patterns that make you feel happy and fulfilled, both short-term and long-term. While certain areas of wellness do cost money, we believe some of the most beneficial practices come completely free. Here, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite free ways to incorporate wellness into your day.
1. Open Your Windows
Fresh air is just that… refreshing! Opening the windows in your home for just 10-15 minutes a day can drastically improve air quality and reduce the concentration of pollutants indoors. Make a point to crack open the windows each morning or evening to let a breeze through your home. Of course, keep them closed if there are outdoor pollutants like smoke or fragrance from laundry vents, waiting until those subside. We have plenty of articles on indoor air quality, how it affects us and how to improve it in our Wellness Center.
2. Practice Deep Breathing
Deep breathing allows your body to fully exchange incoming oxygen with outgoing carbon dioxide, improving blood flow. Simply taking 3 minutes a day to slow down and breathe deeply activates the lymphatic system and detoxifies the body. It is an effective method of reducing stress and anxiety, stabilizing blood pressure and slowing your heartbeat. The best part? You can do it anywhere, anytime. Find a comfortable position and breathe in slowly through your nose while actively pushing out the stomach, hold for a few seconds, then slowly let your breath out through your nose, letting your stomach go down.
3. Take Walks
Research has proven there are many physical and mental health benefits to walking
1. From easing joint pain and boosting immune function to improving your energy levels and supporting creative thinking, making walks a regular part of your life is indispensable. Grab a family member, friend or colleague for one-on-one time or walk solo to clear your mind. Get outside and be present; look around during your walk to take in the beauty of nature or your city, appreciating the things you look at every day, seeing them in a new light.
4. Stretch it Out
You know the feeling when you stand up after sitting at your computer for a long time and feel the need to stretch? Our bodies were not made to stay in one position for long periods of time. Stretching increases blood flow in the body, relieves fatigue and releases pent-up stress. However, don’t wait until your body needs a good stretch to do it… be proactive! Take multiple small breaks during your day. Stand tall lifting your hands over your head, bend to touch your toes, or try some different stretches. You’ll instantly feel more mobile and relaxed.
5. Stay Hydrated
Water is incredibly important to human health. Drinking water affects your energy, weight, nutrition – you name it. The best method to hydrate is to sip hot water throughout the day. Hot water improves digestion and cleanses the body. As hot water isn’t always accessible, keep your favorite reusable water bottle close to you at all times to prevent dehydration.
6. Practice Mindfulness
Many studies have been conducted on the effects of mindful thinking on our bodies
2. Here at Branch Basics, we talk a lot about “tossing the toxins” in your household – but we also believe our thoughts can be toxic. Read Marilee’s 5 Powerful Ways to Toss Toxic Thoughts with a Mind Detox to improve your mental wellbeing.
7. Make Sleep a Priority
Sleep, particularly quality sleep, is one of the most important aspects of health and wellbeing. We like to say that quality of sleep translates to quality of life. Our body needs good sleep in the same way it needs water and food. Sleep gives our body time to reset, process information and rejuvenate. Poor sleep is linked to a variety of negative conditions including obesity and mental health problems. Establish a bedtime routine, power down those devices early and prioritize your sleep. Find more tips for better sleep here.”
8. Spend Time Outdoors
It’s crucial to get outside on a daily basis and soak in the sunshine. Being outside boosts our vitamin D levels, which keeps our bones and muscles healthy. In fact, researchers have found that three-quarters of American’s aren’t getting enough vitamin D
3. Time spent outdoors releases us from stress and fatigue and improves our mental state. Nature grounds us.
9. Actively Practice Gratitude.
Practicing gratitude is scientifically proven to improve your life and literally change your brain
4. We all have the capability to be grateful each day. Take time to acknowledge the positive things in your life. Before you close your eyes at night, list five things that you are thankful for from the day. Any method you use to practice gratitude, it’s one of the simplest ways to improve your satisfaction with life.
10. Remember to Unplug
We’re constantly checking our phones for updates – work, news and personal. It stimulates our brains and keeps them constantly running at full speed. Intentionally taking time away from our screens is important to slowing down, living in the moment and being fully present. Set aside specific times throughout the day (ex: no phones at dinnertime, no devices an hour before bed) and make these tech-free times part of your daily routine.
Remember, every day isn’t going to be great. Sometimes we wake up feeling off or we get bogged down by errands, obligations and bad news. As you take up some of these daily exercises, keep in mind that wellness is your own personal journey. When we create little practices in our daily lives that make us feel better, they start feeling like indulgences. A sunny, morning walk can be the highlight of my day! Continue to do what feels good for you and note the progress in your everyday wellbeing.
Marilee Nelson is an Environmental Toxins expert who has spent nearly 30 years advocating for the chemically-sensitive and chronically-ill. She is a Board Certified Nutritionist, Certified Bau-Biologist and Bau-Biology Inspector and specializes in Food As Medicine. She has helped thousands of families and individuals identify, heal and recover from toxic exposures and is on a mission to revolutionize the way American families view their health.