Summer is the season where everything feels just a little bit easier. With longer days, extra rays, and toes in the sand, it’s the perfect time to embody a radiant glow inside and out.
If you’re looking to take your mental and physical health to a new level this summer, start by incorporating these 10 new habits into your daily routine. When autumn rolls around, you’ll be surprised by the results these simple, yet powerful habits can produce when you’re consistent!
1. Move Your Body Daily
Sometimes we view exercise as this all-consuming task that we have zero time or energy for. However, if you reframe the concept into just finding a way to move your body each day, even if it’s only for 15 minutes, your body will thank you for it! Regular exercise improves hormone balance, reduces PMS symptoms, improves your mood, and helps you sleep better.
If hitting the gym seems overwhelming, utilize the warmer days to get in the flow. Walk to your local coffee shop, play in the backyard with your kids, bike to visit a friend, or even do some laps in the pool. There’s lots of creative ways to get your body moving that won’t feel like “work.”
2. Drink a Glass of Water First Thing in the Morning
Are you a coffee person? Me too. It becomes rather easy to roll out of bed and immediately reach for that mug of caffeine, doesn’t it? But this can lead to energy crashes that aren’t ideal when seeking sustainability. Instead, challenge yourself to drink one glass of water as the coffee brews. This will refresh your body first thing in the morning and aid in overall hydration (since coffee actually dehydrates the body). After being in an 8-hour fast as you slept during the night, this will nourish your body with a natural energy boost that coffee can’t match.
3. Leave the Sugar Out of Your Daily Coffee or Tea
Speaking of coffee, leave the sugar out of it and you’ll wow yourself with the results! Sugar can be a sneaky culprit of extra weight gain and blood sugar roller coasters. The American Heart Association recommends no more than six teaspoons of sugar (25 grams) per day total for women. So instead of drinking your calories and receiving minimal benefits from it, leave it out and save it for your food intake. Think about it, if you have three cups of coffee a day each with a tablespoon of sugar, that’s three tablespoons of sugar you’re eliminating a day and 21 tablespoons a week! That adds up.
Sugar can be a sneaky culprit of extra weight gain and blood sugar roller coasters.
4. Meal Plan and Prep
Schedule one day a week where you’ll commit about an hour to meal planning and prepping. While it seems like a lot of time to invest upfront, it’ll actually save you time throughout the week. I mean, how much time do you currently spend each day thinking about what to make for dinner or driving to stores to pick up something at the last minute? Meal prepping will also help you to stick to a clean diet and avoid reaching for sugary snacks or fast food dinners.
5. Get Outside for at Least 20 Minutes a Day
There’s no better source of vitamin D than the sun itself. It has been reported that almost half of Americans (42%) are deficient in this crucial vitamin which aids the immune system, promotes energy, and lowers blood pressure. Getting outside for as little as 20 minutes a day will have you soaking in these benefits. So ask a colleague to take a walk at lunch with you, read a book outside in the morning, or take your kids to the park before dinner. These small activities will make you feel so much better!
6. Make Your Bed
There’s a reason this is one of the first things we learn as children, although very few of us have carried this habit into adulthood. It may seem silly, but this action alone has a huge psychological effect, which is probably why many of the world’s leading motivational coaches recommend it. When you make your bed, you instantly give the illusion of an organized space and a quick feeling of accomplishment (great for gaining momentum!). With this, it’s easier to focus and be more productive.
7. Add More Veggies!
Oftentimes it’s the simple supplementations that do the trick. For instance, trade out starchy white carbs for brown carbs, then reduce half the portion and add veggies in its place. Not only will the vegetables leave you feeling full and satisfied, they also have far more health benefits than carbs. Carbs are important in a balanced diet (despite what diet culture has fed us!), so this isn’t to suggest cutting them out altogether, but rather to promote a moderate consumption so you can receive all the benefits, as opposed to an overloaded plate that will counteract the benefits.
Red, yellow, and orange veggies give your skin a yellow tint that signals health and attractiveness.
Another reason to eat more veggies is because they can positively influence your perceived attractiveness! When carotenoids, the group of red, yellow, and orange pigments in fruits and veggies like strawberries, carrots, and bell peppers, are eaten in excess, your skin takes on a yellow tint that signals health and attractiveness. One study showed a noticeable difference in facial attractiveness in just six weeks! Summer, with all it’s abundance of fruits and vegetables, is the perfect time for an all-natural glow-up.
8. Write a Weekly To-Do List
Writing a weekly to-do list with no more than three tasks a day will optimize your time. People tend to overload their lists and then don’t accomplish anything more than moving it over to the next week (guilty!). More than three tasks a day tends to overwhelm and therefore promote procrastination. Whereas, three tasks are visually appealing and feel much easier to accomplish. So, each week break your days down into manageable tasks, and you’ll see that master to-do list diminish quickly.
9. Pick Out Your Outfit the Night Before
Did you take part in the Evie Dress Up Challenge this January? There’s a definite mood change that comes when we take the time to take care of ourselves, and part of that is getting dressed! It’s tempting (especially when working from home) to resort to loungewear and yoga pants every single day. And while those pieces definitely have their place, everyday can start to feel a bit stale. Revive your daily attire by choosing a cute outfit the night before so you can easily slip it on and skip the whole “I don’t have anything to wear” drama in the morning.
10. Do One New Thing a Day
Always go to the same coffee shop? Switch it up. Always take the highway to work? Take the backroads. Always watch the same TV show before bed? Read a book instead. The list could go on and on. Wherever you’ve established a rigidity in your routine, try spicing it up. Do one thing differently every day, and by the time summer ends, your life could look completely different. You have no idea what opportunities could be waiting for you in new locations. So explore! As humans, we’re meant to change and evolve.
These 10 habits will provide a good starting point to find the summer glow up you desire! Feel free to add more and personalize the list. The important part is to prioritize what’s important to you. What area of your life do you want to see the most change? Relationships? Career? Health? Whatever it may be, develop a new set of small and simple habits like these that will move you forward in that direction. You’ll amaze yourself with your growth once you do!
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