How to Get Through Mondays

Start by preparing on Sunday. Get your clothes picked out for the following morning, complete your weekend tasks so they aren’t delayed into Monday, and go to bed early. 

Wake up a few minutes earlier than normal and don’t go back to sleep. 

Start your day by drinking water.

Eat some breakfast- even if you are not a breakfast person you can still make a smoothie or something light to get your body going.

Fill out your calendar to start planning for the week

Dress for success- there is a saying “look good, feel good” for a reason. 

Start thinking about plans for the upcoming weekend to have something to look forward to.

Complete some of your easier tasks first.

Take breaks throughout the day to help keep you motivated.

Treat yourself to a coffee on your way to work or order some lunch. 

Be positive and have fun at work.

Job vs. Career

There are many differences between having a job and having a career. My opinion is that a job is something you do to make money, whereas a career is long-term and something you invest your time and energy into. You build towards your career and try to keep leveling up towards an end goal. A career, since it is long-term, is hopefully something you enjoy doing that will keep you engaged and satisfied.

Something to keep in mind is that even if you love your job or career, it shouldn’t define you. It should motivate you in all areas of your life. For example, you can love your job or career and still maintain other interests such as traveling, helping others, etc. Keeping up with your outside interests will help you see things in different ways, which could help translate into better insight with your job. 

Self Improvement Month

September is self improvement month. It is important to understand that you can accept and love who you are and still want to improve certain aspects of yourself. Here are some examples of self improvement:

  • Positive self talk
  • Reflect
  • Identify areas to improve on
  • Research what you want to improve
  • Be honest with yourself
  • Write down your goals and how you will achieve them
  • Accept the past and learn from it
  • Accept failure and learn from it
  • Try random acts of kindness
  • Learn something new
  • Improve current habits/quit bad habits
  • Find a routine and commit to it
  • Work on your emotions
  • Increase your focus
  • Remove toxic people from your life
  • Find a mentor
  • Limit your social media use
  • Get enough sleep
  • Adjust your diet
  • Drink more water
  • Find like-minded people to surround yourself with
  • Learn to love yourself

How to Stay Healthy this Fall

As the weather begins to change it is important to change with it. Fall is associated with cooler weather, leaves falling, and of course, seasonal colds. Here are some ways to stay healthy this fall:

  1. Take vitamins, especially C & D, to help prevent seasonal colds
  2. Get your yearly check-up
  3. Make sure you are up to date with your shots- including a flu shot
  4. Eat foods containing nutrients that help boost your immune system
  5. Keep your skin moisturized 
  6. Stay active by raking leaves, going for hikes, pumpkin and apple picking, going to a corn maze, etc.
  7. Visit a fall farmer’s market to get fresh, in-season produce such as vegetables (pumpkin, sweet potatoes), whole grains, and fresh fruits (apples)
  8. Partake in fall cleaning- sanitizing can help prevent seasonal colds as well as helping your mental health
  9. Take time to yourself when needed 
  10.  Remember to keep your physical AND mental health a priority

Meditation

Here’s how to start:

  1. Choose a calm environment
  2. Wear comfortable clothes
  3. Decide how long you will meditate for- I recommend 5 minutes for beginners
  4. Stretch 
  5. Get in a comfortable position
  6. Close your eyes or focus on an object
  7. Focus on your breathing- start by taking deep breaths
  8. Asses your thoughts and energy
  9. Reflect
  10.  Focus on your purpose for meditating

Remember that meditation is a practice- it is not an end goal. Use it as a tool to help you achieve a healthier mind.

Building Your Confidence

At some point in our lives, many of us struggle with having confidence. Everyone has different ways of building their confidence and mine was using the “fake it until you make it” approach. I started by doing the things below- even if I didn’t truly believe them.

  • Don’t compare yourself to others- no one has the same life as you. You are made to be different from others and you will have a different timeline than other people in their lives.
  • Look at everything you have already achieved- from small accomplishments to big ones, you have already achieved a lot. Think about classes you have done well in, friendships you’ve had, promotions you’ve received, etc. All of these are accomplishments in your life and something you should be proud of.
  • Think of your strengths and talents- everyone is good at something. Think about the things you like to do that you are good at! Start doing those things more and it will help you feel a sense of accomplishment and pride.
  • Take care of your body- this doesn’t mean just exercise, although that wouldn’t hurt, this means taking care of your body overall. Take showers/baths, drink water, eat good food, wash your face, etc. All of these things will help you look and feel good!
  • Practice positive self talk- stop saying negative things to and about yourself. Is there always room for improvement? Yes. But it is how you think about improvement that is key. Look at it like you are wanting to get even better and become a better version of yourself rather than thinking you need to be better.
  • Detoxify your social media- remove things from your feed that don’t make you happy or don’t make you feel good. I used to follow a lot of celebrities and influencers which made me feel like I wasn’t good enough because I didn’t look like them, go on vacations like them, eat like them, etc. Once I removed them from my feed, I stopped having those self doubts.

One day, I didn’t feel like I was faking it anymore. I genuinely felt more confident in myself. It can be a long process to gain confidence but it leads to a happier life which is absolutely worth it.

Stretching

Stretching is essential to living an overall healthy life. It has so many benefits and can be such an easy, low-impact activity. Some benefits of stretching are:

  • Keeping muscles flexible and strong
  • Can relieve pain
  • Increases range of motion
  • Decreases stress
  • Boosts Energy
  • Helps you burn calories at a faster rate
  • Improves posture
  • Stretching before bed helps your body rejuvenate while sleeping
  • Can help you avoid muscle spasms

There are many other benefits associated with stretching, but these are some of the top reasons why I recommend stretching. I stretch before bed, when I wake up, and frequently throughout the day. If you work a desk job like me, it is essential that you take breaks to walk around and stretch during the day.

How to Deal with Change

  • Acknowledgement: you need to acknowledge and understand that things are changing
  • Acceptance: even if you don’t want to accept the outcome, you need to accept that things are changing. If you don’t like the projected outcome- fight to change it.
  • Stress: all change can cause stress- even good change. It is important to manage your stress levels by taking care of yourself. Continue eating well and exercising during change.
  • Routine: keep yourself on a routine as close as possible to the one you had before your change. This will help make it seem as though the change is not affecting your life quite as much.
  • Talk: it is important to reach out to someone if you need help dealing with change. Seek out friends and family that you can trust to help you through whatever the change may be.

Developing a New Healthy Habit

Earlier this summer I decided I wanted to be healthier- mentally, emotionally, and physically. I thought about what I wanted to improve and what could help me get there. What I wanted was to find a good stress reliever to help improve my mental and emotional health along with getting me in better shape physically. My solution: running. I know many people who run and they are some of the healthiest people I know- in all areas of health. They are in good shape and they are happy, so I decided to give it a try.

The most important things when developing a new healthy habit are:

  • Stay motivated- have your friends and family keep you on track and hold you accountable if needed. When I first started running I would text my friend about it every day. 
  • Don’t discourage yourself- it’s okay if you have a hard time sticking to it in the beginning. If you take a day off, look at it as an opportunity to try again tomorrow, don’t give up because of one setback. 
  • Start slow- give yourself time to adjust to this new habit. They say on average it takes about 60 days to make a habit become more natural. That’s two months. Stick with it and don’t give up on yourself.
  • Manage your expectations- results are not immediate for most new habits. For example, my habit of running, I did not lose weight after one run. It takes time to build towards your end goal. Be patient with yourself and trust the process.

To start, figure out what you need or what your life is lacking. From there, you can decide what habits you would like to start developing. Whatever you decide you need, remember everything listed above: start slow, manage your expectations, don’t discourage yourself, and stay motivated! 

Expressing Your Emotions

It can be hard to explain to someone what you are feeling and what you need from them but it is so important to learn how to do this in your friendships and relationships. Oftentimes we expect others to know how we feel and to understand. We want them to know what is wrong and how to help without us explaining it. However, this is not realistic and we need to stop putting these expectations on others. 

For example, if you are upset with someone for something they said or did, you should be straightforward with them and explain what it is that they did to upset you, why it upset you, what they could have said or done instead, and how they can fix it. I have found this to be very helpful, especially in my relationships. I realized that people cannot read my mind and it helps significantly when you are honest with them. It can be difficult or even awkward at first but in the long run it helps everyone in the situation. Try processing your emotions first and then expressing them to that person!

Side view of young woman in casual clothes sitting on sofa and talking while spending weekend together