Healthy habits are tough to start doing all at once. It takes time to get used to them, and implement them in your life. But it’s totally worth it.
I started doing things for me, and my health. Not only physical but mental. I found the habits that worked for me and that kept me going. It took a lot of time to get there, and I know in the process I’ll discover more things that work, but for now, I’ll just share with you the ones that have worked and changed my life.
Sleeping well it’s an important one since I was a child. For me to be at my best, be happy and healthy, I know I need to sleep between 7.5-9 hours. My body just doesn’t work otherwise. I never could stay up doing homework while in school, and I couldn’t pull an all-nighter for the life of me.
If this is your case, I recommend you start setting a bedtime. A routine makes everything work better because you work around it. I know that after 11:00pm I can’t be out of bed, and that’s my type of self-care.
If you have any problems sleeping sometimes, like I do, I recommend using an eye mask and earplugs. Just find what works for you.
Making my bed every morning
It may sound like a small thing, but making my bed every morning has made wonders for me. I never as a child or teenager did it. My mom never made me do it, so I never saw the point.
But I did always heard people saying that you should do it, and the benefits of it. So I decided to give it a try a few years ago. Now it’s such a routine that I can’t leave my house without doing it. It’s already a habit, and it makes my morning feel so much fresh. I start the day doing my first task, and my room feels clean. Once I do my bed I don’t feel like going to bed again, so I’m ready to start my day.
Yes! I know you know it. It sounds super cliché, but drinking water it’s not only essential for your physical health but also you’re mental health. I feel so much aware and fresh when I drink water constantly.
For some people, it may sound obvious, but for others, it’s really hard to drink water. Some people even forget to do it, and that’s what happened to me. I liked to drink water, but somehow I found myself at night wondering when was the last time I drank water.
My solution was to carry a reusable water bottle everywhere I go. I set a goal of how much water I need a day, and try my best to meet that goal. Once you make it a habit to always leave your house with your bottle, there’s no way to forget again to drink water again.
Prepare my food and a meal plan
One of the problems that I had was that I wanted to eat well but then didn’t have time or energy to cook. And it’s almost impossible to eat healthy while eating out all the time. And of course, making your own food not only helps your health but also your pocket.
What I started doing was pre-planning what I was going to eat in the week. Then through the week, I prepare what I’m eating the next day. If I know my lunch will be chicken, I put my chicken to defrost on the fridge. If I know I want eggs for breakfast and there aren’t any, I go buy some. That way I don’t get caught off guard the next day. It also helps me not to waste food and buy more than I need.
Exercising regularly was a really hard one for me. Growing up, I never developed this habit, besides my PE class 3 times a week (and trust me, it doesn’t count). All my life I was really skinny so I didn’t see the point of starting exercising because I didn’t see exercise as a healthy choice, I just thought you do it to be skinny.
And oh boy, I was so wrong. I found myself tired all the time, and in need of energy. It took me moving to Barcelona to start exercising. I had a gym at a 5-minute walk distance from my home, so I decided to give it a try.
I started with yoga and pilates, and it literally changed my life. Not only did I lose weight (which wasn’t my main reason to do it), but I felt energized and happy. Genuinely happy. It changed the way I ate because I was doing so many healthy choices, that I didn’t want to ruin it by eating the wrong foods.
I 100% recommend starting with yoga and pilates because it’s really light exercise, but at the same time you get so much done and you end up really relaxed. Once I was comfortable enough to try more stuff, I started using the treadmill at the gym.
When people ask me, I always say ‘just find what works for you’. Some people can’t handle yoga because it’s too relaxing, while others can’t handle intense machine workouts because it’s well… too intense.
Just start doing it. Little by little. When I started on the treadmill I started running only 5 minutes because I just couldn’t get through it. Now I can run 30 minutes without stopping. Give it a try, I promise it’s totally worth it.
Waking up 1/2 hour earlier
While I do love sleeping, I also love mornings. I love waking up and feeling fresh. Since I identified this about myself, I made a compromise with myself that my mornings needed to be more enjoyable. So I try to wake up half an hour earlier than I need to.
I just need to have a relaxed morning. I hate waking up in a rush and not having time to eat breakfast or relax a little. So waking up half an hour earlier ensured that I had extra time for myself. It makes you start your day on your right foot and not losing your mind for being late.
The last one but the most important one is self-love. I realized I was always looking in the mirror and hating what I saw. I criticized everything about me and never found things that I actually loved about myself.
I started loving myself more. Trying to always find things I liked and making time for myself and my mental health. In the process, I learned that self-love also includes changing the thing you don’t like.
If you don’t like how you feel, change it. You feel tired? Start exercising. Feel ugly? Find ways that work for you that makes you feel beautiful.
One of the things that helped me was fashion. I started getting rid of clothing that didn’t make me feel beautiful. I promised myself I would only wear things that made me feel confident. And it worked like a charm. I started loving myself more and feeling confident in my own skin.