How many women do you know who put themselves last? Probably a zillion. We can’t help it. We’re women. We nurture. But the reality is that we really can’t take care of others unless we take care of ourselves first. That’s a tough pill to swallow because we feel so guilty when we think about ourselves and put our needs before others we care about. But putting yourself last day after day will eventually leave you at the end of your rope – all worn and frayed.
My hope is that this blog post will help women find some simple ways to achieve better wellness by being a tad “selfish” with no regrets. My hunch is if you trust the power of nurturing yourself, the rewards you get will empower you to do what comes natural – and care for your loved ones with more intensity than you ever thought you could muster.
There is no shortage of information about what to eat – books, magazines, websites, blogs. What really matters for women’s nutrition? I think its shifting the focus from choosing foods for what they don’t have to looking at foods for what they do have. Low fat. Low sugar. Low carb. Yawwwwwn…. You can go crazy in the grocery store keeping up with the products touting they’re the next best thing you need to be healthy.
Instead, why not try to make one positive nutrition change:
- eat a power-breakfast daily like oatmeal with walnuts and fat free milk
- get your fruit fix by making a fruit and yogurt smoothie or adding fruit to lunch
- try something different like an unusal veggie (jicama) or cooking with beans
If your ideas of exercise include time on the “dreadmill” and “personal draining”, you need to change up your exercise regime! No pain, no gain is so 1990’s. In today’s world, there’s no time to loathe what little personal time we get to sweat it out.
- Try yoga – a moving meditation! Power yoga classes involve using your personal strengths to tone up. Heated classrooms bump up the sweat factor.
- Dance your butt off. More than a popular summer tv show on Oxygen, people are into dancing like never before. Try Zumba or just google a dance studio in your area. Bellydancing, bollywood, ballroom, broadway jazz. Whatever your flavor, take a risk and shake it.
- Sign up for a race. You don’t need to run a marathon to experience the exhileration of getting a race number and crossing the finish line.
All these exercise ideas involve some kind of commitment – and that’s what it takes to really nurture yourself toward wellness. Find something that sounds good. Then tell your spouse or family how important it is to you and ask for their support. Whether it’s relieving you of dinner duty or giving you a ride back and forth, take the help and enjoy your new exercise endeavor!
Maintaining emotional health is so important for wellness. Most women tend to think they strive under stress, but they don’t realize the harm that comes with it when the walls close in. You take on the burdens of others and then you become overwhelmed yourself.