Making time for yourself might be challenging if you run a side business, work nonstop, look after children and pets or balance the above-mentioned responsibilities. In a relentless endeavor to beat the clock, busy people work through lunch, the weekend or even holidays since they know they can’t squander any time.
You might have even stayed up late attempting to get everything crossed off your to-do list (knowing you have an early morning wake-up call), or you might have skipped breakfast because you spent the entire morning at your desk ‘til lunchtime.
But there’s good news for all go-getters: Just because you’re busy, it doesn’t mean you should ignore your health. Leading a busy life indicates that you need to increase your attention to your health. From keeping a water bottle close at hand to scheduling downtime, here are a few time-tested tips that will help you live a healthy lifestyle no matter how busy you are:
1. Consume Leafy Greens at Least Twice Daily
One of the simplest methods of staying healthy despite your busy schedule is including leafy greens like arugula, spinach and kale in at least two meals per day.
Leafy greens are packed with health benefits. Try tossing them together as a side salad with dinner or adding them to your smoothie in the morning.
You can also incorporate greens into your meals and store them in airtight food storage containers for later. There are many ways to include greens in the foods you enjoy if you’re tired of the same old salad or smoothie.
2. Start Each Day with Self-Care
When you try to squeeze in errands before supper or have back-to-back meetings, it’s easy to fall into the mindset that you don’t have enough time to take care of yourself. When busy with work and chores, we put off our self-care activities or decide that our time would be best spent in other ways.
Practice self-care first thing in the morning to prevent delaying it (or skipping it entirely). It’s better to do it in the morning, so you know it will get done, whether you take care of yourself by exercising, meditating or preparing healthy meals for the entire day.
3. Figure Out Your Most Pressing Tasks
Some days, it simply isn’t possible to go to work, fit in a 60-minute run, go shopping, enjoy some alone time, call your mother and tackle everything else on your to-do list, and that’s okay.
Rather than getting overwhelmed and accomplishing very little, prioritize your task list for the day. Handle the most important things first, and you’ll be able to breathe a bit easier knowing that you’ve already done what matters most. It takes some practice, but learning to prioritize eases stress and makes it easier to get things done.
4. Always Keep a Water Bottle with You
Keep a reusable water bottle or an insulated cup/tumbler with you at all times because being hydrated is essential for general health and well-being. Proper hydration also helps you focus so you can work through even the busiest days.
Treat your water bottle like your phone: Carry it with you everywhere and keep it fully “charged” with cool, clean water. Once you get in the habit, you won’t have to think about staying hydrated throughout the day because it will become second nature.
5. Determine What’s Non-Essential and Let Everything Else Go
We frequently neglect our regular routines when we have very busy days or weeks. As your daily schedule changes or busy seasons come and go, putting some of your tasks, rituals, exercises or routines on hold is completely acceptable. But that does not imply that everything must be removed.
Decide on a few non-negotiable tasks you have to get done and some practices that keep you feeling your best, and be sure to give them top priority no matter what. Then, stop worrying about everything else to avoid becoming overwhelmed.
6. Modify Your Surroundings
Start by surrounding yourself with inspiring images, creating a vision board or posting affirmations on your desk, refrigerator or mirror. You’ll be more likely to maintain your motivation when you’re busy if you can see your goals and remind yourself why you’re working so hard. Make healthy practices simpler, as well.
Place your blender in a convenient location, leave your yoga mat out, showcase healthy cookbooks on your shelves and keep your essential oil diffuser close to your bed. Modifying your surroundings to keep the things most important to you at your fingertips helps you stay on track and makes it easier to get everything done.
7. Schedule a Time to Unwind
We usually operate at 100 mph all day long until our heads hit the pillows. The end of the day often extends into the evening, whether with late-night work, checking off items on a to-do list or caring for young children.
But working through the night can disrupt your sleep, trigger stress dreams and leave you feeling exhausted the next day. The need for a nocturnal routine is greatest on busy days, so be sure to take some time to unwind, even if you just indulge in a relaxing shower or spend a few moments reading before bed.
Avoiding burnout and exhaustion is tough for busy professionals. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to get through even your most hectic days. Try the suggestions above, and don’t forget to use your insulated drinkware to enjoy your favorite beverage at the end of a long day!