5 Tips to Live Longer (and Happier!)
By Lorna Jane
No matter who we are, what we do or where we live, I believe we all have one thing in common: We all want to live longer, healthier and happier lives.
Probably the single greatest factor determining how long each of us lives and how well each of us lives is our own behavior. It's about what we eat, how we work and how we play. No one is perfect, and most of us have had some bad habits in the past, and some might still do today. But rather than fretting over bad choices made in the past (or even bad choices made last night or earlier this morning!), consider making some changes starting this moment, because you can positively affect your health and longevity starting right now!
Here are my five top tips to get you started:
1. Nurture Your Body
Healthy rituals are crucial for a long and satisfying life, so it's important to engage in activities that keep you body supple, your mind clear and your spirit content. Try starting the day with slow stretches or yoga, take five-minute breaks to refresh yourself, and make time for daily walks and breathing exercises. Your body will not only feel rejuvenated, but you'll be able to think and perform at your best, and live your life to the very fullest.
2. Eat to Live
The current obesity crisis is a clear representation of the amount of people who live to eat. We need to change this mentality and bad eating habits, and eat to live. This means, eating less more frequently, enjoying fresh fruit and vegetables on a daily basis, cutting down on your sugar intake, and making smart swaps like replacing processed carbs for whole grains.
3. Exercise Your Brain
It is also important to exercise your brain on a regular basis. Having a stimulating job helps, but you can also increase mental activity by reading a book, doing a crossword puzzle or even learning a new language. By keeping yourself mentally engaged, you are helping to guard against degenerative diseases and increasing your chances of longevity.
4. Explore the Outdoors
Between racing from home to work, and back again, you begin to forget what it feels like to experience the overwhelming calm of being outside with the sun gently shining on you and the trees gracefully swaying in the breeze. If this sounds like you, stop what you're doing and take five minutes outdoors! Breathe in the fresh air, find beauty in the leaves, and listen to the birds sing. Drift off to that happy place where you feel safe and relaxed, and be at one with nature. Your inner peace will thank you for it!
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5. Be Positive and Grateful
Look on the bright side, and count your blessings - give yourself a few minutes to feel thanks and gratitude for what you have, rather than allowing your mind to focus on what you don't have or what you need to do. This will truly help you to overcome obstacles that stand in your way. Not only will genuine positivity create happiness, but it will also help you to live longer! Optimists have a lower chance of getting heart disease, which is reason enough to smile!
The most important thing to remember when making a conscious choice to live a longer, healthier and happier life is to remain consistent with your good habits. Change will not come overnight but each day you will reap the benefits of treating your mind, body and soul with the respect and nourishment it truly deserves to live a great, long life!
Readers - Do you regularly practice any of these tips? If not, do you plan to start any of them? What are YOUR happiness and longevity tips? Let us know by leaving a comment below.
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Lorna Jane Clarkson is the founder and Chief Creative Officer of Lorna Jane, Australia's leading activewear brand for women (now available in the U.S.). With her passion for being active, her love for healthy food and recipes, not to mention her infectious positive outlook on life, Lorna inspires women to Move, Nourish and Believe every day.