7 Simple Physical Activities to Raise Your Spirits & Boost Your Mental Strength
This is a guest post by Marc Innes.
Physically tired and mentally stressed has become the new version of normal for a lot of people. Perhaps, you’re experiencing the same thing, and you’ve already ditched the idea that you can be anything else because your responsibilities will not change anytime soon.
However, you can be. There are simple changes that you can incorporate into your daily or weekly routine that might not alter the number of things you need to do, but still have the ability to transform how you feel about your days and your responsibilities.
Here are seven simple physical activities that can boost your spirits and mental strength.
1. Getting a massage from a professional
Stop making this a birthday treat. Rather, get a massage regularly to treat your stress. A weekly massage will deal with those tension knots you have all over your body. At the same time, it can stimulate your body’s natural production of endorphins, your happy hormones.
Endorphins do not only improve the mood; they can also boost your immune system and neutralize pain signals.
2. Doing planks
Personal trainers swear by this exercise because planks really target the core. Also, a plank program, as simple as it is (there’s no special physical coordination required), can yield immediate results in terms of weight and strength.
As you succeed in doing different kinds of planks, you’ll feel lighter and stronger. This will give you confidence in your ability to conquer day-to-day responsibilities and challenges.
Any type of wiggle to music will actually do. There’s no need to follow any instructional video. Just move your body to the beat and automatically feel light and happy.
The beautiful thing about dancing is that it’s both a manifestation of joy (most people dance when they feel happy), as well as an activity that brings joy.
4. Cleaning your house
This is a highly productive physical activity in terms of lifting your spirits and is scientifically proven by numerous tests.
In 2011, researchers at Princeton University established that clutter automatically diminishes one’s ability to focus on any task. It turns out that the visual cortex gets overwhelmed by the presence of task-irrelevant objects around, thus making it harder for someone to direct their full attention in order to complete a task easily.
It’s worth pointing out as well that cleaning your home or any space that you use puts you in control. It’s the perfect reminder that you have the power to take charge of situations to ensure your advantage.
5. Deep breathing
This may seem like something that people already naturally do, but studies reveal that most people don’t breathe deeply enough to benefit their health and overall well-being. Therefore, it’s imperative to be quite deliberate about breathing properly and breathing deeply, especially during stressful moments.
Before taking on any task, make sure to breathe long and deeply. This will put you in a Zen state – calm and relaxed. When you’re calm and relaxed, you can pace yourself and think more clearly about your course of action. You’re more likely to do what is most appropriate for every situation.
There’s no special skill involved for walking, so you can easily do this every day. Walking at least 30 minutes a day is known to reduce depression and positively impact your quality of life. Thus, anytime you’re feeling down and blue, go outside and just walk around.
This physical activity can also make you fitter as walking is a highly recommended cardiovascular exercise.
Like massage, stretching can tackle those tension knots created by stress. Also, stretching first thing in the morning can help jumpstart your day as it can automatically make you feel less sleepy. Plus, loosening those tight muscles encourages the release of endorphins, making you feel like you can charge through the day with ease.
There you have it – a list of easy activities that you can work into your day so you can have a good disposition and mental clarity. As simple as these activities are, they can help improve your overall well-being, making you more effective and efficient in everything you do.
Marc Innes is the Owner and Principal of the School of Natural Therapies, a training school for Massage & Holistic Therapies located in London. He developed an interest in all things complementary to Allopathic Medicine, in particular, Reiki Healing and EFT, which culminated in running a successful teaching and ‘energy healing’ practice. Marc is passionate about the massage and complementary therapy industry.