Thursday, July 8, 2010

Health & Fitness: Caring for Our Bodies

Happiness lies, first of all, in health. ~George William Curtis

Just imagine for a moment what life would be like if each individual on earth were allowed to own just one automobile per lifetime. Do you think you would be more motivated to take better care of your vehicle-getting routine tune-ups and oil changes, rotating tires, keeping it clean, and so forth? Some of us might have a very different attitude about it altogether. We might take our responsibility to care for it more seriously. And we would most likely appreciate and cherish it much more.

Fortunately, most of us are not limited to owning just one vehicle per lifetime so we don't have to be overly concerned with proper maintenance and care. But, how about our bodies? We can't trade them in for another model. And some parts can't be replaced. When something goes wrong we do what we can to fix it. We own it for life. And it's up to us to take proper care of what we have. The truth is, however, many people neglect proper nutrition and diet. They don't exercise consistently. And they don't make relaxation a priority. So their bodies get run down. They become more susceptible to illness. They get tired and end up having to work harder to keep themselves going.

Most would agree that they could do a better job in taking care of themselves. Oftentimes they know what needs to be done. There is a lot we can do to be our best-to look our best and to feel our best. When we take steps to take care of ourselves physically it also affects our mental and emotional well-being. Our body and mind works together. Our energy is increased as we make positive changes in improving our health. And our attitude and self-esteem is improved as we like the changes we see and feel.

So what is it that keeps people from taking better care of their bodies? For one, it is hard work. Making it a disciplined lifestyle takes motivation and commitment. But it can be done if you will take it one day at a time. Following are some tips to help you develop a healthier lifestyle:

* Begin with short-term goals. Be realistic in your expectations. Small changes over time result in big changes in the long run. Be patient and learn to appreciate and celebrate small victories.

* Picture yourself the way you would want to be. If it is a possibility then it's a matter of doing what needs to be done. Start by believing you can do it. Having faith that it can happen is essential. It keeps you going when you want to give up.

* Find an accountability partner. Having someone to whom you can report how you are doing keeps you motivated. This person can help keep you on track and remind you of the progress you're making when you don't see it. A partner who shares your goals and will join you in achieving them can be especially helpful.

* Establish a routine and be consistent. A new habit can take about six weeks to become a part of your lifestyle. If you have a setback, don't give up. Get back on track as soon as possible. Begin again by setting goals, visualizing your success, believing for it and taking action.

Lifestyle changes don't happen overnight. Whether or not you begin today, three months from now will still come. You can be that much closer to your goals. You can be the best you can be if you make it a priority. How important is your body to you? Are you satisfied with how you are caring for it? How could your life be better if you were to make some changes? You have one body for life. What you do with it now will have lasting results.

Copyright © 2007 Krystal Kuehn,
Maximum Potential, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Krystal Kuehn, MA, LPC, LLP, NCC is a psychotherapist, author, teacher & musician. She is the cofounder of New Day Counseling, a family marriage counseling and child therapy center,, an award-winning, self-help and inspirational site where you can find hundreds of free resources, insights & inspiration, and where you can find beautiful baby poems, baby quotes, cute sayings & baby videos that will touch your heart & increase your joy & gratitude for the children you love & enjoy!

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