57 Simple Ways You Can Enhance Your Wellness in 2021: The Body & Mind Edition
When you hear the word ‘wellness’, what are some of the first things that come to mind? Traditionally, ‘health’ and ‘wellness’ have been used as an umbrella term to describe our physical health – what we eat, how much we exercise and what diseases and ailments we live with. In the last decade, wellness has become more of a multi-faceted concept and less of a concrete recipe. In this post, I’m going to walk you through what wellness looks like, how we can achieve it and 57 simple ways you can enhance your wellness in all aspects of your life this year!
What Does WEllness MEan to You?
When we talk about wellness, we don’t have a super concrete idea of what it is or how to achieve it. By definition, wellness means “the quality or state of being healthy in body and mind, especially as the result of deliberate effort.” (Dictionary.com). Wellness is going to look different for everyone based on where you live, what dietary restrictions you have, how you are able to move your body and what limitations you have, the presence or absence of illness and many more factors.
The important thing when seeking wellness is not to necessarily get hung up on the specifics (how many ounces of water to drink in a day, how many minutes of meditation are ideal, how many pushups you need to do), but more about the intention to choose healthier food options, get enough sleep (dependent on unique needs), make a point of moving your body etc.
Not super clear, eh? The easy answer of what I’m saying is don’t get caught up in the specifics – focus on your intentions to add aspects of health and wellness into your life on a daily basis.
The Body & Mind
We know that what we eat, moving our bodies, how much water we drink and more affect our physical health, but what about our minds? The body and mind are connected, this is no secret – everything we think and feel has the power to affect our physical beings. So why are we so reluctant to address this aspect? To achieve a holistic level of wellness, we need to willing to work on the wellness of our minds in addition to our bodies!
This article talks about how mind wellness goes beyond mental health, and how you can incorporate it to enhance your wellness in 2021!
57 Simple WAys You Can Enhance Your WEllness in 2021
Below, I’m going to share with you 57 ways you can enhance your wellness in both mind and body this year. Not everything on this list will speak to you – and that’s okay. I encourage you to take interest in the ideas that fit into your definition of wellness, and challenge yourself to incorporate them into your daily life!
1. Determine What Wellness Means to You
The first and most important way to enhance your wellness is to define your own version of wellness. If this means you place an importance on physical activity, then acknowledge that. If you’re more into tapping into the mind aspect of wellness, do that! There is no right or wrong way to approach wellness, but finding out what’s important and manageable for you will make wellness more attainable than doing things you don’t enjoy just because they seem ‘healthy’!
2. Actively Participate in Your Wellness Journey
When it comes down to it, you can’t expect someone else to take charge of your health and wellness. You have to be proactive and determine what it is that you want to focus on, and find out how to include more of that in your daily routine! This doesn’t mean you have to go it alone – there are plenty of online resources and professionals you can reach out to for advice in certain aspects of wellness (think dieticians, your family Dr., Psychologists, and more).
3. Check in With YOurself
Ask yourself honestly how you’re doing. Do you feel tired? Weak? Do you feel burnt out or that you have no time for joy in your life? Checking in with yourself and assessing how you’re feeling can be the key to unlocking what your body and mind need from you!
4. The basics
Nutrition, exercise, hydration, sleep, mental health. These are common areas we think of when we think of health and wellness. It’s not wrong to think of and consider these things, but it is important to be mindful there are other things included in the umbrella of wellness.
What will enhance your wellness with the basics is acknowledging the role they play in your life, and determine how each of them plays a part in your daily routine. Are there things you could be doing in these areas that you aren’t doing now? What specific goals do you have for each of these areas? Taking care of the basics and finding out where your goals and intentions lie is a great way to start your wellness journey offright.
5. Protect Your Environment
Your home, work environment, social circle and mind are physical, emotional, social and mental environments you live in. If you don’t feel safe or comfortable in these environments, this will affect your overall wellbeing. Make your environments safe and a place of growth and joy.
6. Surround Yourself with People You Love
Creating a loving, supportive social circle is important. Having friends and family who share the same values, enhance your mood with their presence and don’t cause any extra problems in your life are important to keep around.
7. Create a Routine
Routines are an amazing way to enhance your wellness! Humans are creatures of habit, and routines help us to create consistency, efficiency, and structure in our lives (source)! Creating a routine with good wellness habits will help you not only to discover your definition of wellness, but implement it into your daily life!
8. Start Saying No
Say no to things that don’t serve you or your goals, that you don’t want to do, that you don’t have the capacity to do or that you don’t have the time to do. Your energy is precious and so is your time – saying no allows you to say yes to more of the things you want to do in life – more things that will help you to enhance your wellness and wellbeing!
9. Be Honest With Yourself
If you don’t love kale, don’t eat it. If you don’t love cardio, you don’t have to do it. Forcing yourself to do things you don’t love just because it’s perceived as ‘healthy’ doesn’t do you any good if it makes you miserable. Instead, pick the things you do love to do that contribute to and enhance your wellness and stick with those – you’ll likely be more successful than if you force yourself to do something you hate!
10. Find Out What It Means to Live Intentionally
Living intentionally is when you decide to live a life that is in accordance with your values and desires – meaning you slow down and tap into your thoughts and actions, and make decisions that will keep you in line with your goals and values. Living more intentionally forces you to weed out the habits that don’t serve you, as well as to focus on what is important to you!
11. Invest in Yourself
Investing in yourself is never considered money or time wasted. Anything you can do to improve yourself, your knowledge base or your life is not wasted. You are worth the time and effort, and investing in yourself solidifies that idea. Knowledge, self improvement, personal development or learning a new skill is never something to be considered wasted time, money or effort!
12. GO For a Checkup
I know, scary right. The thought of having to find out what’s going on inside our bodies can be a little nerve wracking – especially if we feel like we’ve been lacking in the health department. However, knowledge is power – and knowing what’s going on inside your body (good or bad) can be a great starting point to guide the changes you want and need to make!
13. Get on Top of Your Finances
Not the first thing you think of when you think to enhance your wellness, but hear me out. When your finances are in rough shape, that is a source of stress. When you’re in debt, that is a source of stress. Stress does not help us maximize our health and wellness potential (it actually slows it down in more ways than one). When you put a plan in place to get your finances in order, you’re creating less stress for yourself, as well as creating a healthier mindset around your finances (moving away from the ‘ignorance is bliss’ approach).
14. STretch Often
In addition to feeling sooooooooo good (you know, that first stretch in the morning after you wake up right? Pure bliss!), stretching also boasts a plethora of health benefits including increased blood flow to muscles, improved posture, increased flexibility and more (source)
15. Make Time For YOurself
You are a very important person. You’re actually the most important person in your life. So why wouldn’t you make time for yourself? Whether you’re making time for yourself to relax, invite joy into your life, work on a goal, or simply do something you really want to do, you’re allowing yourself time to focus on yourself. Like investing in yourself, you’re putting yourself first and making yourself a priority. It’s important to make time for yourself and acknowledge you are deserving of this time.
16. Feel Your Feelings
Avoiding feeling your feelings may feel like it serves you in the short term, but in the long run it harms you. Not addressing your feelings can lead them to build up and actually amplify over time. Take a moment to assess how you’re feeling at the time of your emotions, and allow yourself to acknowledge that and feel that. You will likely naturally spend less time feeling that way, and will have allowed yourself the natural act of going through your emotions!
Determine how much water you need to be drinking and start to make that a priority. It’s no secret that drinking water helps us function maximally – especially when it comes to feeling awake and alert! Here are some other benefits of drinking water here.
While there is no concrete amount of water everyone should be drinking (individual needs greatly vary across age groups, genders and depending on presence or absence of illness), it’s important to determine how much water you should be drinking based off of your individual needs, and follow that guideline!
Getting your thoughts out onto paper can be a great way to clear your mind. Journaling is known to clear your mind, improve your sense of gratitude and help with letting go of negative thoughts – along with several other benefits (source). If you’ve thought of journaling before, it might benefit your overall mindset and help to enhance your wellness to give it a try!
19. Reframe Your Mindset
Your mindset could be impacting the level of wellness you’re able to achieve. Having a positive mindset doesn’t mean you’re cluelessly floating through life, unaware of any despair or misfortune. Having a positive mindset means searching for the silver lining, making a habit of cultivating positive thoughts and deciding to approach the challenges you face in your life with a positive outlook (source). When you create and cultivate a positive mindset, you’re actually unlocking the door to a plethora of positive health benefits as well, including a longer lifespan and less overall stress (source).
20. Upgrade YOur Inner Dialogue
The way you talk to yourself actually has a huge impact on your mental health and wellbeing. The way you speak to yourself directly affects how you form thoughts, respond to challenges and work to achieve your goals. When we struggle to reach a goal, we may say things to ourselves that are the opposite of positive. We may put ourselves down or call ourselves names. Would you say these things to a stranger trying to reach the same goal? Would you say this to the six-year-old version of yourself? Decide to have a kinder approach when it comes to your inner dialogue and watch the transformations that occur!
Good Read: The Power of Your Internal Dialogue
21. Set Intentions
Sometimes, when you’re wanting to improve something in your life you try and make a goal – but it doesn’t always work. A goal is great if you want to achieve something that has a specific and measurable outcome. An intention is more of a plan that stems from a feeling or the intention to do something (ex. be kinder, make more time for yourself, etc.). Sometimes an intention is more fitting than a goal, because it allows you to work on something that is measured in a more qualitative way as opposed to a quantitative way!
22. Get Enough Sleep
As with the hydration point, I’m not going to be telling you how much sleep you need to be getting (that amount will vary for everyone). What I am going to recommend is that you make a conscious effort to get more quality sleep in your life. Sleep is so important – it allows our bodies to heal, regenerate, and ultimately recharge. Getting enough sleep is a key factor in allowing yourself to achieve a higher level of wellness!
Good Read: 10 Tips to Help You Get the Best Sleep Ever
23. Read the Label
What you’re putting into your body (food) and onto your body (products) is very important. Reading the list of ingredients is a great way to know what is in the products you’re consuming, and whether they’re known carcinogens or ingredients that have ill effects on the body.
24. Identify Habits That Get in The Way of Your Goals
We all have ‘bad’ habits – I don’t really like to call them that because it invokes feelings of shame. We all do things that hold us back from reaching our goals. Make this the year you decide to quit those habits that are holding you back from reaching your goals! Identify what they are and ask yourself how you can change that. If it’s a habit that’s getting in the way of you reaching your goals, it’s no longer something you need to be doing.
25. Reduce Your Screen Time
Especially before bed. Reducing your screen time is not only a great way to reduce stress and improve your mood, but it’ll actually create more time for the things you truly enjoy doing (source)!
26. Cut YOurself Some Slack
At the end of the day, you’re human. An important way to enhance your wellness and work towards a healthier body and mind is recognizing that you are bound to make poor choices and mistakes, however those don’t define you as a person. Change isn’t linear and neither is progress. You will have days you slip back into old habits, and you will have days you excel and our proud. Try to ride each wave as it comes, and give yourself a little grace.
27. Move Your Body
Exercise is important, no doubt about it. Again, how much and how often is based on your individual needs and limitations, however it’s important to get up and move your body! Make exercise an important part of your routine. Exercise is widely known for so many health benefits, including decreased stress, cardiovascular health, release of endorphins and more.
Exercise doesn’t have to only be performed in a gym or on a workout machine. Open your mind to the idea of organized sports, walking, swimming etc. There are so many ways to get your body moving and active without setting foot in a gym (if you don’t want to).
28. SPend More Time Where Your Passions Lie
Tapping into your passions is so beneficial for your mindset. Pursuing your passions can lead to empowerment, increased self-confidence and increased life satisfaction (source). Whether your passions lie within your work our outside of your work, it’s important to tap into them to improve your overall mindset and wellbeing.
29. Get Outside More
There are a plethora of health benefits that come with spending time outside. Not only is it easier to exercise outside, it’s also known to boost our immune system, increase our focus and increase our energy levels (source)! Getting outside is scientifically proven to enhance your wellness, and is something that is fairly easy to do!
30. Make Attainable Goals
Making goals you can actually achieve is a huge part of goal setting. When you set unrealistic and unattainable goals (ie. losing 15lbs a week), you put yourself through a lot of stress and effort to try and achieve them. Setting more realistic and attainable goals sets you up for success and allows you the ability to achieve your goals and dreams in a healthy way!
31. Find What’s Causing You Stress
Stress is no good when you think of things that enhance your wellness of the body and mind. Stress can have many different effects on your body, mind and behaviour such as fatigue, drug or alcohol misuse, irritability, fatigue and more (source). Finding out what’s causing you stress and actively working on improving that area of your life can help improve your wellness and overall well being!
Learning the practice of meditation is a great way to enhance your wellness. Meditation is known to lengthen attention span, reduce stress and increase self awareness, among many other benefits (source). Meditation can be a great addition into your morning or evening routine to bring clarity and focus back into your life!
33. Keep Track of YOur Commitments
Something as simple as keeping a calendar or agenda can help you stay on track and aware of all of your tasks! Missing a commitment or double booking yourself can lead to unnecessary stress, so why not eliminate that at the source?
34. Pay Attention to What You Eat
This isn’t telling you to go on a diet or to start any kind of new trend with eating, this is simply a reminder to be mindful of what you’re eating, and what that looks like. Choose foods that are full of nutrients, fill you up and taste good to you. Whatever that looks like for you, being mindful of what you eat and not being hard on yourself are important when it comes to nutrition and fueling your body.
35. SLow Down
Learn to take a pause. Learn to take rests. Take time to draw yourself back to the present and live in the moment. So often we’re running so fast and running circles around ourselves, at that. Slowing down doesn’t mean giving up, slowing down means taking time to refocus and be able to see what’s in front of you.
36. Make Time For Joy
A no brainer! Making time for joy in your life is not a luxury, but a necessity! Joy is something you should be including every day, no matter what the circumstances are. Joy doesn’t have to be time consuming, it doesn’t have to be a huge task – just something simple that makes you smile and invites a moment of bliss into your daily life. You are worthy of joy and happiness no matter what is going on in your life!
Clutter does more than look unappealing and cause an obstacle course. Clutter actually affects how our minds work – the clutter decreases clarity, impairs our decision making and (obviously) increases stress (source). Whether you have a cluttered home, cluttered work area (think email inbox/desktop) or even a phone riddled with notifications, you need to get rid of that clutter for your own peace of mind!
38. REduce Stress
I’m sure you’ve noticed a common theme throughout this list of ideas to enhance your wellness – reducing stress. Stress affects more than just how we’re feeling, it affects our brain chemistry, how we think, and has profound effects on our bodies. Reducing stress in your life is hands down one of the number one ways you can invite wellness into your life – from all aspects. It’s important to find out what is triggering your stress, and how to reduce it ASAP!
Good Read: Effective Stress Relievers for Your Life
39. Try Something New
When was the last time you tried something new? Trying something new forces us out of our comfort zone, allows us to learn and practice new skills, try a new adventure and more! And who knows, you may actually enjoy it! Trying something new is a great way to enhance your wellness this year as it will help to further your personal growth, increase your confidence and help to overcome fear!
40. Pick YOur Battles
You can’t be the best at everything, win all the time or be right all the time either. Picking your battles means you choosing what is worth pursuing and fighting for, and then learning to let some things go. By picking your battles, you inherently choose what is most important to you – and that allows you to spend more time prospering in that area!
41. Listen to Music
Music is good for the soul, plain and simple. Adding more music into your life can help you decrease stress, increase your memory (who here is amazing at learning song lyrics?) and improve your mood (source). Try to spice up your regular content with a new playlist, or dive back into a list of old classics!
42. Distance from People Who DOn’t Align with Your Goals, Intentions or Lifestyle
Jim Rohn once said (and I continue to repeat) “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with“. If you’re spending time with people who don’t align with your values, goals or lifestyle, that’s going to be pretty difficult when it comes to building meaningful connections and having a supportive social circle, don’t you think?
The truth is, when you surround yourself with people who take and drain from you as opposed to give and uplift, you dampen your own shine. It can be difficult to let people go out of your life (history and awkwardness can make it feel worse than it really is), but in the long run its worth cutting those ties so you can flourish as a person!
43. Understanding Sexual Health & Orgasms
I’m using sexual health as an umbrella term here, but essentially you should have a general idea of what basic sexual health is! When we think of sexual health, we often think of practicing safe sex (using protection or abstinence) as well as prevention of STI’s (condoms, abstinence, getting tested, etc.). These are all important aspects of sexual health, however it doesn’t end there!
Understanding your own sexual health also means understanding that sex is a part of everyday life, understanding one’s sexuality, having access to sexual education and safety, and more (source)! There is nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to exploring your own sexuality or inquiring more about sexual health, and is something you should be open to exploring regardless of whether you have a partner or not!
There are so many benefits to having orgasms (sexually, physically, emotionally and bonding between partners), whether you’re having them alone or with someone else (either way, there is no shame!). Understanding orgasms in relation to sexual health and your own health and wellbeing can be a great way to enhance your wellness, and improving your overall being!
44. Take a Social Media Break
Social media is a double edge sword. While on one hand it’s informative, entertaining and a way to connect with meaningful people, it can also be a source of stress, stimulus overload and information fatigue. Constantly being on social media can allow us to form a bit of an addiction, and that’s when we know we need to take a break. Taking a social media break before it gets to the point of needing a detox can be beneficial to us!
Good Read: 7 Clear Signs You Need a Social Media Detox
45. Find Out YOur Likes and Dislikes
Honoring what you like and dislike is so important when it comes to enhancing your wellness! You can eat all of the green beans you want to feel like you’re making a difference, but if you hate green beans you’ll likely a.) be miserable b.) give up c.) avoid vegetables like the plague after that experience. When you find things you like when it comes to finding wellness, use those to your advantage! Being honest with yourself and choosing to do things that are actually exciting, you’re more likely to create lasting habits!
46. Prioritize Yourself
You are the star of your own life. Without you, there is no life! So why are you so reluctant to put yourself first and attend to your needs? Filling your own cup first is super important when you think of how to enhance your wellness. The fact of the matter is, you can’t pour from an empty cup – meaning, you can’t give to others if you don’t have anything to give. Start making time for yourself, putting your wants and needs front and centre, and watch as your mindset starts to transform!
47. Set Boundaries and honour Them
Boundaries are a great way to protect your wellbeing. They work to set invisible limitations on what you’re willing and capable of doing. This allows you to protect your energy, and to focus on the thoughts and things you want to accomplish and work on in life! Set boundaries so that you can go about your life without overextending yourself, burning yourself out or wearing yourself too thin!
48. Make a Point of Learning
Learning is something we think will end once we leave school, and this is the farthest thing from the truth. Participating in lifelong learning helps to boost your confidence, change your perspective and brings new ideas forth (source)! Learning doesn’t have to be concrete or formal, you can decide to pick up a new hobby or skill, or make a point of trying new things often!
Part of the power we have with our brains is that we have the ability to look back on memories and be able to reflect on our day to day lives. Reflecting gives us the ability to analyze a situation after it has occurred, and either praise ourselves or learn from how we handled it. Reflecting is important to do daily – you can see patterns in your behaviour and become consciously aware of whether you’re working to reach your goals or not!
50. DO a Life Audit
Pause. Sit down. Take an inventory. Where do your passions lie? What are your goals? What are you currently doing to achieve your goals? Doing a life audit is sitting down and taking an inventory of your life and deciding where you want to be in 6 months, a year, and so on. It’s taking a look at all aspects – health, wellness, finances, career, social life etc. and looking at your current situation vs. where you want to be. Doing a life audit is a great way to find out what areas of your life aren’t bringing you joy, and how to get closer to living a life more in-line with your goals!
51. Cook at Home
Not only can you see exactly what is going into your food, but you also save money and tap into your creative flow! Cooking for yourself or others transcends beyond the simple health aspect of the food itself, and has several emotional and mental health benefits! (Don’t read into this as cutting out all take-out, but more of a challenge to buy less prepared foods and get your hands dirty!)
52. Treat Yourself
Life is too short to devoid yourself of joy. You deserve enjoyment in every single day, without being ‘worthy’ of it or having to ‘earn’ it. Treating yourself doesn’t have to cost money, and can be something as simple as drawing a hot bath, taking the night for yourself, ordering a takeout treat, etc. Treating yourself shouldn’t be seen as a luxury or something that has to be worked tirelessly for – learn to add simple pleasures and rewards throughout your day!
53. Stop MAking Excuses or Giving Explanations
You don’t owe anyone an explanation or an excuse for the things you choose to do or not. Whether you do something, or say no to attending something, your initial answer or action is enough. You don’t owe anyone more than that – whether it’s to ease their own feelings on the matter or not. Learn to protect your peace by setting boundaries, honouring those boundaries, and not feeling guilty about having them!
54. Seek Out Non-Toxic Products
As we learn more about the products we consume and apply each day, we’re becoming more aware of what ingredients aren’t favourable. It’s important to be conscious of what we’re consuming, applying and absorbing on a daily basis! Learning more about which products are non-toxic and have more natural ingredients can improve your overall health and wellbeing, and are worth looking into!
55. Find Balance
When you establish balance in life, that means you aren’t putting all of your energy or resources into one specific area. Finding a working balance between, work, enjoyment, nourishment, pleasure, indulgence and more is key to keeping yourself well and happy. When you deprive yourself of things (ie. junk TV or your favourite take out or taking the night off just because), you start to crave them more and can have a rebound binge effect (have you ever cut out something completely only to ‘cheat’ and overdo it because you missed it?). Cut out the cycle of depriving and binging and learn to find balance by incorporating all aspects of your life together (takeout and eating healthy can co-exist).
56. Use YOur Strengths to Your Advantage
While it’s always important to try new things and branch out, it’s equally important to tap into your strengths and use them to your advantage! Truthfully we can’t all be excellent in everything we do, but we do have certain areas that we excel in! Finding out what your strengths are and using them to help fuel your wellness journey can be a great way to make up for areas you don’t do as well in. While it’s important to try and work on all areas of your life, use your strengths where you can!
57. Keep an Open Mind
Your opinions, thoughts and knowledge are always changing. You may try something once and hate it, only to try it again later and love it. Keeping an open mind is one of the best ways you can enhance your wellness – it allows you the space to grow and change without confining yourself. It gives you the option to always try something new and receive new information, as well as adapt and change when circumstances change!
Good Read: 7 Benefits of Being Open Minded
Wellness is a journey, not a destination. The things you find helpful to enhance your wellness may not be helpful to someone else (and that’s okay). What matters most is you take the time to create your own definition of wellness and embrace that definition! Finding wellness within yourself is often a combination of doing what is good for our bodies (again, individually different needs) while also doing what is good for us spiritually, mentally and emotionally!
Enhancing your wellness ( the body & mind edition) was created to show you the powerful connection between how you think and feel is equally important to your physical health. The secret to maintaining lifelong wellness is tending to your body and mind together!
Tell me which one(s) you want to implement into your routine or something else I left off the list!