This post was inspired by BetterHelp.com which provides online therapy with licensed therapists.
I for one don’t feel like I need a new year to set new intentions, goals, or dreams. In fact, I kinda think summer is a great time re-commit to healthy living. The weather is warm and ready for outdoor exercise. The fruits and vegetables are fresh and plentiful. The daylight hours stretch for maximum productivity. The world feels full of possibilities…. making changes to your life feel possible.
With that in mind, I thought I’d share my top 4 intentions for healthy living, as well as how I’ve been applying these intentions in my every day life. If summer has you itching to set some new Healthy Lifestyle Intentions, then this post is FOR YOU!
1. Make time for dedicated outdoor play every day. I’m not talking about those moments of fresh air between house and car, car and work. I’m talking a dedicated half hour to soak up some Vitamin D. No need to reinvent the wheel. Just go for a walk or plant things in the dirt. Kick around a soccer ball or splash in the pool. If it’s raining, grab an umbrella and go for a stroll anyways. Or do some yoga under an awning. If it’s snowing, throw on your coat and boots and go for it. Just get outside!
My current favorite way of doubling down on this intention is taking all my phone calls outside. Phone rings…I head outside. But for my dedicated 30 minutes of play time, I’m a long-time lover of a casual walk or a quick dip in the pool. My living situation/climate makes both options super easy (year round!) and for that I am thankful.
Pictured above: A trail through Biscayne Bay National Park, the perfect place for an afternoon stroll.
2. Keep healthy hacks on hand for the unhealthy foods you most often crave. I for one think that, if you love burgers/ice cream/pizza/burrito bowls/brownies, you can have your cake and eat it too. Just be honest with yourself about the things you love and LEAN IN. Prepare for those inevitable days when you’re feeling a Papa John’s delivery by always keeping a crust and some topping options in your kitchen. In doing so, you’ve just made it RUHL easy for yourself to get a pizza in the oven and in your belly. No phone dialing necessary. Once you’ve figured out the craving hacks that work for you, give the necessary ingredients a permanent place of honor on your weekly food shop list.
Lately, I’ve been loving banana soft serve as a replacement for my frequent need for fro-yo. I portion and freeze bananas so that I can pop them right into my food processor (usually with a scoop of frozen blueberries or some peanut butter) and have a delicious evening dessert in seconds.
Pictured above: My “fried” pickles, a hack for my very favorite restaurant appetizer.
3. Take consistent breaks throughout your work day. Your work is a marathon not a sprint. There will always be another project, another email to answer, another meeting, another goal to cast your eyes upon. As this is the case, what’s the use in pounding the pavement so hard on one task that you’re too exhausted to give your all to the next? Give your brain space to breathe. Get your legs out from the confines of the underside of your desk and STRETCH. It may seem counter-intuitive at first but your productivity levels will thank you.
My approach to this intention is ever changing and has evolved and shifted along with my professional life. Currently, it centers around choosing priorities for the day and working to complete those top priorities first. This allows for larger breaks later in the day (a perk of working from home!). I also try to break those priorities down into 45 min – 1 hour long tasks and break for 10 – 15 minutes in between each task.
Pictured above: Cool drinks on my balcony, a great place for a break when you work from home.
4. Schedule outings with friends and partners that are fun-focused, not food-focused. Yes, grabbing brunch is a great way to spend some quality time with your bestie. Dinner and drinks is a classic recipe for a great date with your boo. But they aren’t the only options. They’re the easy, no thought needed options. Why not plan a trip to the art museum with your gal pals or a bookstore adventure with your boyfriend? I’m not saying you should eliminate food-focused outings all together, just that switching it up can go a long way in getting you out of an eating-out holding pattern. Oh, and huge bonus points if you can plan something active and/or outdoors! Summer is the perfect time to make this switch.
Since moving to Miami, Chet and I instituted #AdventureSaturday. We check out new-to-us parks, head to the ocean, or just stroll around some shops. It’s a great way to spend time together and, because we are having experiences instead of meals, we make lasting memories.
Pictured above: Playing a video game at the arcade, one of our favorite outings.
Have you set any new intentions lately? What were they? Do you have any tips for tackling the ones listed above? Share below! xoxo