Not long ago, I began a journey to a better me.
Wellness is an important aspect of our lives that often gets overlooked or pushed to the side. We take our health for granted and only think about it when we are ill or feeling run down. Unfortunately, many of us don’t prioritize our wellness until it’s too late. This was a harsh reality check I had to face when I unexpectedly lost my mom in October of 2022. While we don’t know the exact reason for her death, we believe it was heart related. My dad had also passed away from a heart condition in 2016, and it made me realize that I needed to do something to improve my own health and break this cycle.
My journey to wellness began with a look at my diet. I had been struggling with chronic fatigue, joint pain, back pain, sugar cravings, weight issues, and various other health concerns. I knew I needed to make some changes if I wanted to be around for my kids and my long-time boyfriend. I started with a visit to my doctor to run some tests and see why I was experiencing some of these issues, and found that I was low in iron. I began taking iron pills, and then connected with a wellness coach and friend. I started to slowly change my eating habits, decreasing my sugar, carb and sodium intake as well as watching my calories. I also began to increase my water intake.
I can’t say it is always easy, but I have the support of my amazing boyfriend (who bought me a fantastic 64oz water bottle to keep track of my water intake (link here: amazon water bottle) and my encouraging kids. A good support team is very important!
It has been just over a month, and the changes I made to my diet have already started to show positive results. I’ve noticed a decrease in my joint pain and stomach aches, and I’ve also experienced more energy and better sleep. Most importantly, I’ve reduced my sugar cravings, and I’ve managed to lose six pounds so far (little victories!). I have begun to journal my journey, and I’m looking forward to the next four weeks and what they will bring.
I have learned a hard but very vital lesson in this: To ensure a successful path to wellness, it’s important to set realistic goals and be prepared for setbacks. I found that writing down my goals and tracking my progress not only helped me stay on track, but also motivated me to keep going when things got tough. Additionally, it’s important to stay positive and celebrate the small successes. Whether it’s losing a few pounds or having more energy, it’s important to recognize and appreciate the progress you’re making. It is also important to remember to take care of yourself both physically and mentally. Eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly are essential, but so is getting enough sleep and managing stress.
Taking time for yourself is important, so don’t be afraid to set aside some time to relax and do something that brings you joy. One of my favorite things to do to relax is read, so I am setting aside time to dive into my favorite books. I also love being outside, and try to get out more often for fresh air. During the winter, I have found that what helps my mental health in our dark, cold winters in New England is to hang mood lighting in the house. We have fairy lights and white Christmas lights in the kitchen, living room and bedroom. The lights lift my mood and make the long, dark nights feel more warm and cozy. During the warmer months I garden. I find being outside and playing with dirt makes me happy and less stressed. It forces me to slow down and breathe. I also feel accomplished when I am successful at growing something, even if it is one small cucumber!
I hope that my story can be an inspiration to others who may be struggling with their own health issues. Taking those first steps towards a healthier lifestyle may seem daunting, but the rewards are worth it in the end.
Take charge of your health today and start your journey to wellness with these 10 helpful tips:
- Make an appointment with your doctor for a checkup.
- Start an exercise routine that works for you.
- Make healthy eating choices.
- Incorporate relaxation techniques into your daily life.
- Set realistic health goals and track your progress.
- Get enough sleep.
- Take time to focus on self-care and mental health.
- Seek support when needed.
- Make time for activities that bring you joy.
- Aim for balance in all areas of your life.
Publisher’s note-I have known Lori for many years and I am excited for the journey she has begun.
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