How to Live a Well-Balanced Life
September 13, 2021
How to Live a Well-Balanced Life
Over the last year, our routines and sense of balance have been disrupted, to say the least. Many are left feeling unmotivated, underappreciated, and unfulfilled in several areas of life, whether they’re social, professional, or personal. It’s hard to live a balanced life and complete ordinary tasks with this mindset. So, whether you’re feeling bogged down mentally or physically, we want to give you some ideas to start living a more well-balanced life! It’s time you return to your usual, happy self or start today.
Start with Your Habits – Good and Bad
A big part of building a well-balanced life starts with the habits and routines you’ve established (or would like to cultivate going forward). Getting rid of bad habits is equally essential as acquiring good ones, no matter how big, small, new, or old.
Research on routine formation and disruption varies, saying that it either takes 2 to 3 weeks or upwards of 10 weeks to form new habits. Yet, it can take as little as 18 days to break them. Bummer. Many follow the 21/90 rule, where you fully commit to a personal or professional goal for 21 straight days, and at the end of that period (if you were successful 90% of the time), you should walk away with a new habit or routine.
Your Sleep Schedule Might Need Some TLC
Do you rely on a sleep aid to help you catch some nice Zzzs every night? Do you find yourself restless or waking up a lot? Does your schedule vary daily, resulting in irregular sleep? Do you regularly snack or drink right before you hit the hay? Are you watching TV or on your phone for hours on end, wondering how you haven’t dozed off yet?
You get the picture.
If any of these sound like your routine, or if you think your sleep quality could be better, there are a few tips from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) that we’d like to share from one of their sleep education pages. Here’s an excerpt from that page:
- Keep a consistent sleep schedule. Get up at the same time every day, even on weekends or during vacations.
- Set a bedtime that is early enough for you to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep.
- Don’t go to bed unless you are sleepy.
- Make your bedroom quiet and relaxing. Keep the room at a comfortable, cool temperature.
- Limit exposure to bright light in the evenings.
- Turn off electronic devices at least 30 minutes before bedtime.
- Don’t eat a large meal before bedtime. If you are hungry at night, eat a light, healthy snack.
- Avoid consuming caffeine in the afternoon or evening.
- Avoid consuming alcohol before bedtime.
- Reduce your fluid intake before bedtime.
AASM also recommends that people exercise regularly and maintain a healthy diet, as proper nutrition and fitness correlates with your quality of sleep or “sleep hygiene.” Don’t worry; we’ll get to that portion in a moment. For now, try to make sure your bedroom is simply a place for rest, meaning no studying, working, binge-watching, or eating in bed. By eliminating these activities from your bedroom, your body will learn over time that it’s a place for sleep.
The gist is that sleep is vital, and sometimes when we’re in our teens, twenties, thirties, and beyond, we tend to forget that and acquire some bad habits that affect our rest. That said, hitting snooze now and then isn’t a sin, and if you’re feeling that urge to take a quick power nap, listen to your body first.
Exercise: Not a Fast Track for Weight Loss, But It Helps
If you’re starting – or on a plateau of – a weight loss journey, you know that exercise can’t do it all. Experts recommend marrying exercise and diet because you won’t see significant progress or changes without focusing on both. Yet, exercise isn’t strictly for those looking to lose weight or bulk up. Regular exercise can benefit your overall well-being; even just a little movement each day can help you feel refreshed and balanced. Consider the following benefits of exercise:
- Maintains or improves your physical abilities
- Improves self-esteem
- Maintains a healthy weight
- Improves overall functioning
- Decreases risk of diseases, illness, and more
- Improves sleep quality
- Maintains or improves cognitive operations
Getting up, getting your body moving, and getting some fresh air are important things to consider when living a more well-balanced life. According to the Mayo Clinic, the Department of Health and Human Services recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week.
Nevertheless, even small daily swaps like taking the stairs over the elevator or going on an evening walk will add up and help you reap some of those associated benefits listed above. Remember that physical health is a marathon, not a sprint. Your body will feel the changes and benefits subconsciously before you actively recognize them. And hey, you’ve got 30 minutes to spare in a day – we know you do.
Think of What You Eat as Fuel Rather Than Food
Your body has needs, just like any other living thing. Sure, you can get energy from almost anything you eat or drink, but some things are more nutritious (and delicious!) than others. Your plates should be balanced, colorful, and satiating without leaving you stuffed, regretful, or worse, feeling empty. Consistency is key, but that doesn’t mean you can’t splurge now and then.
There are some excellent ways you can switch up your diet, like incorporating healthy smoothies, wellness shots, or fresh, organic pressed juices, for example. Not only do different types of smoothies have different benefits, but they can promote better gut health, provide immune support, and simply blend up your everyday diet (pun intended 😉). If you’re still asking the question, “Are smoothies good for you?” for more answers.
At the very least, you know your local Smoothie King will be using 100% whole fruits and organic veggies while avoiding:
- High-fructose corn syrup
- Hydrogenated oils
- Added hormones
- NSF-banned substances
- Artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, and
- Trans fats
We want you to feel good about what you fuel your body with, which is why we encourage our guests to rule the day, every day, by making informed, balanced decisions in each area of life.
Final Thoughts & Tips on Living a Well-Balanced Life
We’ve only touched the tip of the iceberg with these suggestions, and there’s a lot more to cover if you’re interested. As a parting thought, we wanted to share five tips shared by another blog that resonated with our Smoothie King team:
- Take care of and nurture yourself.
- You won’t accomplish anything if you aren’t taking care of your vessel. Get plenty of rest, exercise, and eat properly. Set time aside for doing something you love.
- Know your priorities.
- Balance does not mean cramming in every activity possible. Examine your values and decide what's important to you; then set your boundaries.
- Create an efficient mindset.
- Be organized and plan ahead. Take time at the beginning of each week to assess what needs to get done.
- Expect the unexpected.
- Rather than getting stressed and upset, learn to roll with the punches when something over which you have no control happens.
- Maintain a positive mental attitude.
- Begin each day intending to make the best and most of it.