Hi all! Today, I’d like to run down my personal Top 5 list of healthy habits that ensure a long, prosperous, exciting life full of enjoyment and surprises. Read below to find out how to keep the fire alive…
List of 5 Habits of Super-Healthy People
I use the word “activity” here in place of exercise to remind you that getting exercise does not have to be boring! There are so many forms of exercise that are highly enjoyable. Dancing, hiking, biking, yoga, any and all sports, and mixed martial arts are just a few examples of ways to break the monotony of a normal exercise routine. For me, yoga is the gold medal winner for the most effective, well-rounded, and results-producing form of exercise.
One area of the body that is largely forgotten when it comes time to exercise is that of the mind. The body’s most important organ, our minds crave a workout, too, in order to stay sharp and to grow! Studies show that our brains actually increase in size when we challenge them. It is no different from working a bicep at the gym. Learn a new card game, bust a new dance move, learn to brush your teeth and eat with your non-dominant hand; all of these create new neurological pathways in the brain, making it stronger.
4. The Yin and the Yang
Life is about balance, and the symbol of the yin yang is often used to represent the two equal sides of life: rest and activity. We move when energized, and rest when tired. Our bodies are giving us constant signals of what they need. Whether or not we honor those signals is what I am talking about here.
Many of you may say that you do not have much energy, or that you are tired throughout the entire day. I, too, have felt this way for long periods of my life. Adopting the other healthy habits on this list will increase your energy levels profoundly, so you will have plenty of opportunity throughout the day for the active side of life!
I should reiterate that this applies to the mind as well. If you feel taxed and overstimulated, put down the book turn off the tv/computer, and simply close your eyes. Your body will recharge faster than you expect, and be ready for another dose of activity. If you constantly “push through” mental fatigue, you will find yourself among the masses of people who are… stressed out.
When you honor the yin and the yang, your efforts will be of higher quality when produced, and your rest will be deeper and more rejuvenating. Overworking your body is not worth the low-quality results you will produce, as it will lead to mental and physical health problems down the road.
Study any culture know to contain a high number of centenarians, those that live to be over 100. One common denominator you will find is that they all have a strong sense of community, and their personal level of social connections is very high.
One great way to not only increase your enjoyment of life and work out your mind/body, but also to create social connections, is to take up a hobby. You may then use your interest to seek out others with like interests in the community, and commune regularly to encourage each other and to grow. All of the sudden, you have a strong sense of purpose. I don’t joke when I say that many people feel as if they barely have a reason to get out of bed in the morning. Heed this advice and see how suddenly life becomes more meaningful.
Our jobs, what we do for monetary purposes, often becomes our largest source of involvement within a community. This is what we spend most of our time doing. This makes it doubly important that you pick a job that you enjoy, that matters to you, and that you see as useful in the world. Income is meaningless if you aren’t enjoying what you do. Many studies show that very poor countries report the highest levels of happiness when its members are spending their time doing things they find meaningful, regardless of income. Wealthy nations often report quite low levels of happiness, due to all of their waking hours spent on activities that mean nothing to them.
As one can see from reading other articles I have written, this area is my passion. It is not important that you a proper balance of protein and carbs if you are not eating a nutritious diet. Focusing on nutrient content with each and every dish you eat will increase your fruit and vegetable intake tenfold. Green vegetables, especially leafy greens, should be the main focus of our diet, as it is for all other primates on earth. Eating a diet rich in water-packed fruits and vegetables also has the wonderful benefit of helping you to stay properly hydrated, another majorly important habit that could easily make this list. A healthy diet is the foundation upon which all other things must be accomplished.
1. Accepting of change
One major study done on centenarians found that the number one trait that all of them share to a high degree was the ability to accept change. Those that live the longest find creative ways to use change for positive means. Life is always going to change. Life is going to throw you constant curve balls. Becoming flexible, bendable, and moldable is so vitally important for our health. Learn to let go of the rigidity of yourself. Be the wise reed that bends in the storm so that it does not break. In the words of the great spiritual author and teacher, Jon Kabat-Zinn, “You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf!”
Some of you may wonder why I did not include sleep on this list. Sleep will come to you as naturally as it does to a baby if you practice these five habits. Sleep is not something you can just “do”, unfortunately. It has to happen on its own as a result of other good choices!
I must admit that it was tough to condense this into a relatively short article, as each of these suggestions are often the topic of very long books! I hope you all benefit from this very much, and I look forward to any comments and suggestions.
As always, to the BEST of health,