Updated: Feb 23
Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body (Joseph Addison) Isn’t this quote true? What does one get through reading? Is it just enjoyment or something more? Reading actually stimulates your brain and allows us to think differently, as well as improve both memory and vocabulary. It is one of the finest qualities that we all should possess, Enlightening us, informing us, and leading us in the right direction. In today's internet-crazed world, nobody gets the time to read, instead all opt for binge-watching TV, as the main source for problem-solving and critical thinking, creativity and so on which is very unhealthy.
A growing body of research indicates that reading literally strengthens your brain. A good read for 30 mins can lower your blood pressure, heart rate, and feelings of psychological distress help to empathize with other people aid in sleep readiness, and improve brain connectivity, just as effective how yoga and humor does free entertainment.
Rather than going for e-reading, non-digital platforms like books, magazines, newspapers, turning their pages, gives a different level of satisfaction. Whatever your tastes lie, whether be it classic literature, poetry, fashion magazines, biographies, religious books, self-help guides, or romance novels, reading will always capture your mind and take you to another world.
Make it a habit to read and move away from your computer for some while, take a book and recharge your soul to the fullest.
Everybody wants to be healthy but forming a healthy habit is easier said than done. Just like a book is for the mind, regular exercise can keep you physically fit. It is a cure for all illnesses. Promotes for a longer and healthier living. As laziness overpowers us, even though we are motivated to take up a routine, we end up not doing it. Exercise regularly even if it's in small amounts rather than exerting too much at once.
Choose exercises you are comfortable with. If you love listening to music while working out, choose Zumba or aerobics. If you want to enjoy the fresh air, go for a walk or bicycle ride. If you sportive, then look out for badminton or football, the choice is yours, but always try to have some physical activity instead of just being a couch potato. Each exercise benefits your body in a different way. In a nutshell, exercises boost your immune system; fend off heart attacks, lower the risk of developing hypertension and diabetes, improve mood and mental functioning, keep bones and joints strong and healthy, help in weight loss.
Some other forms of simple exercises include growing a garden, the activity of digging weeding, and picking will exercise sundry muscles. Getting up from the couch after long hours of sitting or even making small brisk walks inside the house has metabolic benefits. Use the stairs instead of the escalator which would be good for knees, as well as calf muscles especially for young adults. While sending an e-mail in the office, go and meet in-person than just sitting and sending emails from your desk.
As you can see there are innumerable benefits of exercise, just carrying out small-small tasks can do us more good than harm.
MANAGING STRESS LEVELS:
Stress has become a part of our everyday life. It has become a part and parcel of life. We have busy jobs, families to raise, work hard for money raise, and not enough time to seek out stress busters.
Though stress to some extent is normal, too much stress can wear you down and make you sick. When you are stressed your body responds, you breathe faster and your bloodstream is flooded with hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. It can immensely affect our thoughts, behavior, and feelings and if left unchecked can lead to high BP, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, gastrointestinal problems. One may think, headache as an illness or frequently getting sick is due to low body immunity but the underlying cause would be stress. Being easily agitated, moody, finding difficulty to quiet mind and relaxing, having low energy to do tasks, aches, and tensed muscles, nervousness, clenched jaw are all symptoms of stress . Managing stress is not an easy task, removing everything out from life that causes distress might be inevitable. What matters most is how you handle it by carefully studying the problem, responding to it efficiently, and bringing out alternatives to deal with it.
Aim for such activities that reduce stress. Calming techniques like meditation, yoga, exercise, spending time with friends, developing hobbies, seeking help from counselors, keeping a sense of humor can work wonders, Surfing the net, playing video games, etc. In brief, a balanced lifestyle and stress coping strategies can help manage stress effectively.
OPTIMISTIC ATTITUDE IN LIFE:
Always have a positive attitude about yourself and others. Feel gratitude for the good things in life. Accept responsibilities for mistakes but don’t dwell on them. When we develop the habit of having an optimistic mindset and attitude we will be free from all negative thoughts and will be more in control of our emotions.
When you think positively, we will always be in a harmonious state, Whatever be the situation. We can develop more self-confidence which will help us to face new challenges. Being optimistic and positive, we can develop a stronger immune system.
When we have a positive attitude, more friends are attracted by our energy. People like to be around positive-minded people. Reading inspirational quotes, repeating positive affirmations is a good practice. These things cannot happen overnight but have to be slowly and steadily developed over a period of time. No matter whatever the situation, resolve to be cheerful.
Personality traits like optimism and pessimism can affect many areas of our health and wellbeing. Positive thinking is a key part of stress management. Positive thinking means you approach difficulties in life in a more productive manner. If the thoughts in our heads are negative, our outlook on life is also likely to be pessimistic.
Some of the benefits of a positive attitude are
Increased life span
Lower rates of depression
Good immune system
Good cardiovascular health
Better coping skills
This way our health also can be maintained by reducing stress and negativity.
DEVELOPING A HOBBY:
Hobbies allow us to take some time for ourselves. In today's busy life, it is very difficult to take some time out while juggling family commitments and a full-time job. Hobbies are not just fun and games. They range from discussing a new book, indulging in some baking, reading, gardening, dancing yoga, etc.
Hobbies can widen our outlook. When you devout yourself to a hobby you take on new challenges that motivates you to learn new things. It satisfies our curious mind, we can meet many new people. Thereby broadening our experiences and social life.
Hobbies help us to manage stress and think creatively at work, certain hobbies can help us bring additional income or a new business. Hobbies keep you in good health both physically and mentally. When we pursue dancing, hiking, aerobics, dancing to our favorite music, it increases our confidence and energy levels. It keeps us in a happy state of mind
Hobbies help us to declutter our mind by taking our mind away from stressful thoughts and focussing on some activity we enjoy, some of the popular hobbies for decluttering our mind include meditation, knitting, sewing, painting, drawing, and cooking.
Hobbies give one “ The much needed me time”. Hobbies force you to take a break and carve out some time for yourself. Learning a new language, designing, tailoring, etc can keep you productive and instill you with a sense of purpose while having fun. It gives us an immense feeling of satisfaction and achievement. As children, we are experts in finding hobbies but somewhere on the way when we grow up, we stop trying new things and spend less time on our non-career interests. It is never too late.
A study made by a team of researchers from universities in Texas showed people who scored higher on the activities or hobbies test had lower blood pressure, lower stress hormones, lower body mass index, and good overall physical function. People who spend more time on their hobbies get better sleep. The study showed that people who indulged in enjoyable activities dealt better with stressful life events. It showed lower levels of depression and negative moods. Hobbies give a greater sense of purpose and meaning. Hobbies are associated with a larger and more diverse social network which is a key factor in healthy aging. The study also showed that employees who had creative outlets outside the office were better t problem solving on the job. Hobbies helped one to recover from the demands of their job. It is better to start a hobby by picking up something which we enjoy doing the most.