Everyone is connected to technology. We all have phones, computers, iPads, Alexa etc. WiFi is a hot commodity and we’re online 24/7. While a topic for a different day, this post focuses on taking advantage of this connectivity for your health and wellness. Looking at some simple tips to live a healthier life, this blog post first dives into the topic of habits. Further on, you’ll find a list of apps that you can explore and use to help you. Be sure to let us know if you have any favourites!
Tips to live a healthier life: Healthy Habits
Being fit and healthy is about consistency and repeated effort. Habits play a huge role to support. A habit is something we do all the time automatically when we encounter a certain setting or situation. The key is that it’s automatic and overrides intentional behaviour meaning it doesn’t require conscious thought, memory or willpower.
Habit vs Motivation
Diets and fitness fads hook you in by promised results in a short period of time. And heck most of these diets/programmes work, they wouldn’t be so popular otherwise! But the problem isn’t the before and after, it’s the after-after. What happens after you reach your goal weight, go on that holiday or run that race you signed up for? Most of the time the motivation ends and you go back to your old ways. This results in a cyclical yo-yo approach year on year. Not only that, but often these diets don’t focus on wellness, but rather getting you to a certain size. Motivation gives you a great drive to start off with but it becomes harder and harder to manage as the weeks go on. This is where self-discipline kicks in, aided by habit.
The fundamental beauty of habits is that they don’t require conscious thought, memory or willpower. And taking a habit-focused approach also means you are looking at your lifestyle for the long term, not just a 6-week panic to fit into a dress or go on a holiday. So how do you form a habit? Repetition! Through regular repetition, you create a mental association between the context (cue) and the action (behaviour).
So before you jump on the latest diet trend or fitness fad, why not keep it simple and focus on simple habits. Work on 1-3 at a time and give them priority in your schedule. Practice and repeat until it becomes nearly second nature. Then move to the next. You will be shocked by the impact this will have on your wellbeing.
How long does it take?
No doubt you’ve heard the famous phrase that it takes ‘21 days to form a new habit’. The bad news is that it’s not true. The research actually shows it takes around 66 days (10 weeks) on average, but this can vary from person to person and depending on the type of actions.
Interested to learn more? Check out the book, the Power of Habit.
Tips to live a healthier life: Apps
Technology is a powerful thing. Today, there is an abundance of resources to help you stay fit and healthy and get into good habits. So take advantage! Below is a selection of apps you can look to download to help you stay on track.
In short, it’s a reminder to breathe. The Apple IoS breathe app is a great way to get a little ‘pause’ during the day. The Breathe app guides you through a series of deep breaths, and it reminds you to take time to breathe every day. Choose how long you want to breathe, then let the animation and gentle taps help you focus. If you don’t have an iPhone, then the Headpsace app is another great option to get 10 minutes of mindfulness in your day.
Calm is a mindfulness meditation app that helps you release stress and reduce anxiety.
This is an app designed to help you build resilience. The app uses science-backed strategies to help increase overall well being. Once you choose your track, you’ll receive tasks, games or reflections to complete easy day and keep you on track.
Banking has gone digital. This online bank is on another level. Not only is it simple to set up, account and do all your basic daily banking, but you can also get on top of your saving and spending too. You can receive instant payment notifications, categorise your transactions and understand analytics to get a budget in place.
A simple app to help you drink more water. You’d be surprised how easy it is to forget. Well not anymore! This app helps set reminders and show your progress to your daily goal. Before you know it, getting enough water will be second nature.
Take the self-assessment to help you build a customised plan. From there, you will be given three emotions to track in your diary. The app will help you to overcome these emotions, build resilience and become your best possible self.
Pilates with a twist. The app is the brainchild of Youtuber Cassey Ho. With the app, you get access to daily recommended workouts featuring unique pop-infused Pilates, exclusive workout videos, recipes, and more.
As the name suggests, the goal of this app is to get you off the couch and comfortably running a 5km distance, no matter your fitness level.
Not only does the app track your sleep, it intelligently finds the optimal time to wake you up to ensure you’re more refreshed and alert.
The king of all nutrition apps, myFitnessPal helps you get on track of your daily nutrition. It already boasts the largest database of any food app but if you can’t find something, you can just scan it in! So easy.
Training to the beat! The app specialised in creating music that maintains a constant beat. You can browse mixes by different genres.
There you have it – some tips to live a healthier life with the help of a little tech. Try it out and see how you get on! With it being back to school, check out this post we wrote about kids & youths breaking bad habits.