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‘The longest journey is the journey inward, for he who has chosen his destiny has started upon his quest for the source of his being.’ Dag Hammarskjöld

Often times we don’t think we can do much to enjoy our lives or be more relaxed.  Not so!  Here are 5 easy ways to bring more ease and balance into your life-

1) Stop and breathe.  By slowing down and focusing on your breath, you can bring down your stress and blood pressure.

2) Notice what’s going on around you.  Too often we get lost in the past or future, and are not present to what is happening right now.  Being present helps you to appreciate what is so right now.

3) Be Grateful.  Instead of focusing on the things that aren’t going the way you want, notice and give thanks to the wonderful things already in your life.

4) Laugh- Don’t take life so seriously, look for the humor and enjoy a good belly laugh!  Laughter releases stress and makes us feel good!

5) Chose what is really important to you.  Act upon what is important to you, say no to what is not.  By doing so you are setting your boundaries and living according to your values!

I challenge you to try some of these tips and see yourself relaxed!!

In caring for our well-being we need to look at the dimension of spirit. Spiritual wellness includes connecting to our higher self and the ability to find meaning in life. It gives us strength to cope with despair as well as feeling good about being alive. It may or may not include religion and could include nature.

You can step outside, or take yourself inside (reflection) to access this. You can go to church, practice yoga, meditate, create art or tend a garden. By doing what is important to you, you are feeding your soul; listening to your deeper self you are accessing your spiritual well-being.

I spent a lot of time in nature. To see my latest findings, please visit http://naturewonderings.wordpress.com/. This, I think, is one of the best ways to care for my well-being.

There are so many ways to take care of ourselves, why do we spend so much time, instead, abusing ourselves? Please don’t answer that, I would rather read all the great ways to improve our health and wellness…

There are two key elements to improving our wellness – one part is to understand which areas of life we would like to change, one part is actually doing what it takes to make the change. By taking action, and changing the behaviors that aren’t working, we can create a better, healthier life. This may be in the realm of the physical, like I discussed last time. Yet, to improve our overall health and wellness, we must also include our mental and spiritual wellbeing.

The direct line to improving your wellbeing is simple-
* Move your body
* Consume good nutrients and savor your meals
* Get adequate rest
* Keep your stress levels down
* Smile
* Do things to relax and enjoy
* Think good thoughts
* Connect with others in a meaningful way
* Better understand yourself and what’s meaningful to you

Much of improving our wellbeing involves the willingness to make changes in our lives. We fall into habitual ways of leading our daily lives, or habitual ways of thinking that leaves us feeling small. To improve our health and wellbeing, we have to be willing to get unstuck and go through some discomfort in the process of change. It is possible if you are willing to take on the challenges and the obstacles that present themselves. Stand for what is important to you!

I spend a lot of time thinking about how I can help people be healthier and happier. There are no assurances, if you take care of yourself you could, at least, improve your time on this earth. Fitness is one of the most important aspects of self-care and it can yield improved health in both the short-term and long-term, but improved wellness is a much bigger picture. You can access a higher level of wellbeing living here, and I’d like to share how.

Contrary to popular belief, the most important thing for us to do in taking care of our wellbeing is to just BREATHE! Unfortunately, most of us don’t breathe properly, and with the stress levels that most of us hold, shallow breathing is quite common (and detrimental to good health!). By breathing deeply, oxygen gets down deep into the cells of your body to feed all the organs and systems that require it for basic functions. Yes, you’ve survived up to this point without breathing deeply, yet doing this will help reduce stress, clear your mind and support you in being ‘present’ (notice) what is happening right now.

If you were to step outside for that deep breath, you could possibly also take in the beauty of the world around us. We are so fortunate to be alive! By appreciating this fact and absorbing the beauty around us, we make a deeper connection with our higher self. Taking 5 minutes might be all we need to bring our stress levels down and notice what we enjoy about our lives. You can take 5, can’t you?

And there is so much more to being well…I will share more in the next posting.

So, it’s been awhile, but that doesn’t mean you are off the hook for keeping up your self care! You taking the best care of yourself should be happening at all times, not just when you are being watched or supported. Yes, we all need support at some time, but it’s really to have help in making change, until we have the hang of it.  There is the practice of learning a new action or behavior, and the practice in being easy on yourself and realizing that sometimes you have done your best.   Confidence, and being ok with what so, what happened, with good intentions for your next move. I wonder why we have to keep working at just being good, accepting ourselves?

So what is wellness for the season for you?

Your wellness

What does that mean to you? How are you caring for yourself? It could be physical, mental or spiritual, or even social or vocational.

Living to your potential wellness, to your ultimate best, is making the best choices at each moment, and living consciously. Or maybe that is reversed! You can make the best choices when you are conscious. We can explore some of those choices next…

A new direction, one that I go toward often, is the topic of a new blog. Please check out http://naturewonderings.wordpress.com/ for conversatons more directly tied to nature and what we learn from her.

Ok, so I have been spending alot of time discussing awareness. Let’s now tie that to your wellbeing. Like I mentioned in the last entry, without the awareness we don’t have conscious choice. Without conscious choice we don’t have control, or responsibility of our wellbeing.

With awareness we are in control, and responsible, for our wellbeing. That said, to improve, or be at our potential best, we need to be aware so to make the choices in alignment with what we say we want.  This is how we access our potential best (See next post on accessing your potential wellbeing).  What better time to stop and be aware than spring!