It’s easy to get discouraged when you don’t see the results you want or when external factors start to impede your wellness goals. However, physical fitness and overall wellness rest firmly on a solid mental foundation. Maintaining a healthy mindset is critical during your continuing quest for complete wellness. Here’s how to get started.
Be Kinder to Yourself
Shift your inner dialogue from criticism to support. Winston Churchill once said, “When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you” and he was right; progress truly starts from within. Love yourself exactly where you are, right this moment, even if it’s not “perfect” or you haven’t achieved your desired weight or fitness state. Trust that you will reach your goals eventually–and remind yourself of this often.
Surround Yourself with Like Minds
Sometimes those closest to us inhibit our progress, either intentionally or inadvertently. Phrases like, “Ugh, you’re STILL going to yoga?” and “Come on, just TRY the cake” don’t support your goals and might make you question your commitment. Take note of the people in your life who enthusiastically support you, and those who are suspicious or doubtful of your lifestyle changes. Kickstart your shift in mindset by attending a health and wellness retreat. Wellness retreats are great places to make new positive-minded friends who are on a similar path.
Be Good to Your Body
Much of our emotional turmoil is related to the current state of our bodies, for better or for worse. Reduce nagging feelings of guilt by eating properly and making healthy diet choices. Treat your body to soothing services at a holistic spa, massage center, or yoga retreat. Since mind and body are deeply intertwined, making changes to one is a useful way to enact a positive shift in the other.
Clear Your Mind of Worry
The mind is perfectly happy spinning its wheels envisioning all the ways things can go wrong in your life. This isn’t a bad thing; it’s just trying to protect you through its preparedness. However, this type of preoccupation can blossom into anxiety, depression, or full-blown panic. Keep paper and a pen by your bedside so you can write down anxious thoughts that keep you from getting a good night’s sleep. Regular meditation–even for just five minutes a day– is another way to calm anxious thoughts and elevate your mood. If you’re new to meditating and aren’t sure if you can stick with it, visit a wellness retreat to learn meditation techniques and to jumpstart your practice.
Immerse Yourself in Gratitude
Motivational speakers have long espoused the benefits of active appreciation for the people and circumstances in your life, both big and small. Teachers at wellness retreats often stress the importance of feeling grateful, as it sets the stage for a positive mental attitude that fuels success in all areas of your life. Regularly jot down a list of the things you’re grateful for, even if it’s as simple as a roof over your head or a meal on your table.
Stay the Course
If you backslide into a negative mental pattern, don’t worry. Simply course-correct and replace the thought with something more positive, knowing that it will get easier over time. Chart your progress through regular journaling so you can see exactly how your mental attitude and expectations have shifted over time, and the positive results that follow. Finally, take every opportunity to recognize how far you’ve come and reward yourself with a pat on the back for a job well done.
Major attitude changes will not happen overnight. You’ve spent years developing specific mental habits and it’s unrealistic to expect that they will suddenly dissipate. But when you actively begin to assess and improve mental patterns that might be holding you back, you’ll find that all aspects of wellness start to get easier.