Nurture Yourself in 2017
Jan 31, 2017 04:41PM
by Christina Captain,
We all say this during the first few months of the New Year: “I’m going to…” (now is everyone’s chance to fill in the blank with their own resolutions). Odds are that most of these promises to can be accomplished easily if we find the time to begin with the most important step––nurturing ourselves.
Easier said than done though, right? But fortunately, we’ve got the master plan (or at least it some helpful tips to point us in the right direction). I promise they’re worth it and definitely on par with fulfilling those resolutions for the future.
Exercise: We’ve heard it before, and we’ll hear it again—but exercise alone is the key to numerous health benefits including self-happiness. Exercise contributes to improving mood, boosting energy, and decreasing the risk of cardiovascular disease and other physical conditions. But don’t worry if going to the gym doesn’t sound appealing. Sarasota is home to several complementary and alternative health activities like yoga or Pilates. Taking a brisk walk this time of year is another ideal option.
Acupuncture: Think about how our bodies function––are there ways to optimize this functionality? Acupuncture promotes a natural self-healing process by the insertion of thin needles into the body at precise points which offer various benefits from increasing the amount of Qi/vital energy to unblocking stuck Qi. Conditions ranging from musculoskeletal pain to migraines and infertility are competently addressed through the modality of acupuncture.
Meditation: How do we nurture ourselves if we are not present in the current moment? Meditating increases self-awareness, self-acceptance and the ability to live in the present. Meditation is also an effective means of regulating emotions and reducing stress. By utilizing this tool, we can cultivate vitality and increase our own cheerfulness. There are many styles of meditation, and I’m confident there’s a variety right for you. A little goes a long way––it’s a practice that can even be done in five minutes if you choose.
Positive Thinking: The benefits of positive thinking are vast. This activity expands psychological and physical well-being which reduces stress in the long-term. Other advantages to swapping out negative thoughts for positive ones include enhanced coping skills and an increased life-span. It’s alright if positive thinking doesn’t come naturally—practice makes (almost) perfect.
Nutrition: Eating a chocolate croissant for breakfast each morning might not be the most effective start to thus New Year (I know…I know…they are so tempting). However, planning ahead can make a healthy diet more manageable. Buy a week’s worth of (healthier) groceries and opt for a balanced breakfast, lunch and dinner. Don’t worry about eating perfectly––small steps pay off over time. Drink more filtered water throughout the day or just remain more conscious of your caloric intake. Your body will definitely thank you for it. Oh yeah, and remember to pick a special day to eat that croissant!
Feeling better already? Me too! Remember to have fun and laugh often throughout this whole process. Try a few of these tips or incorporate them all. This will become the start to that master plan. Just remember, this Valentine’s Day, to love and nurture yourself as well as your valentine, and if you need assistance, I am always here to help.
Christina Captain, DAOM (c), MSAOM, MSHN, MA, is a nationally board-certified and Florida-licensed acupuncture physician and the lead practitioner at the Family Healing Center which she founded in 2000. In 2014, she earned a Master of Science degree in Human Nutrition from the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut, and is currently a candidate for the Doctorate in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine with a focus in integrative medicine from AOMA––Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, Austin, Texas. (2016). Captain’s knowledge and enthusiasm for health and wellness has earned her a reputation as a qualified lecturer, keynote speaker and experienced teacher throughout the United States. To meet Dr. Captain, call 941-951-1119 or email [email protected] and schedule your free meet-and-greet.