salad with greens, cucumber, and avocado with text overlay: 20 Days of Wellness

[Wellness] 20 Days of Wellness

Happy Wednesday everyone! Thanks so much to those of you who shared what you’d like to learn more about when it comes to wellness last week! I’m getting to work on those and will have some posts done soon addressing those things.

For today, though, since we’re 20 days into our ‘One Thing for Wellness’ Challenge I thought I’d do a little recap of the challenge so far. Here are the things we’ve been doing for our wellness each day:

DAY 1

Practice Good Posture

Practicing good posture can help us look, feel, and breathe better. Try to be aware of your posture throughout the day, and make adjustments as necessary to correct it. 

Here are some tips to help you make sure your posture is good:
– Keep your chin parallel to the floor.
– Your shoulders should be even and relaxed, not hunched up toward your ears.
– Keep your spine in a neutral position (your spine should maintain its natural S-curve).
– Your hips should be even, with weight distributed evenly on both feet when standing.
– Your knees should be even and your kneecaps should be pointing straight ahead.
-When you’re sitting down, keep your chin parallel to the floor and your shoulders, hips, and knees at even heights. Your knees and feet should point straight ahead.

Is good posture something that comes naturally to you or do you have to work at it?

DAY 2

Eat 1 healthy meal.

Sometimes we think we have to eat healthy all the time in order to be well, but that puts a lot of pressure on us. It’s hard to eat perfectly all the time, and let’s face it — sometimes we just need to eat a piece of cheesecake.

I like to use the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 rule – eat well 80% of the time, and if you don’t eat as healthily the other 20% of the time, you can just enjoy it and not feel guilty about it.

DAY 3

Do 1 thing for your spiritual wellness.

Spiritual wellness is defined as “expanding a sense of purpose and meaning in life.” 

For many of us, doing things that contribute to spiritual wellness means participating in faith-based practices. For others, it may mean participating in activities that make us feel we’re contributing to the betterment of our world.

DAY 4

Spend a few minutes out in nature.

Spending time in nature has many benefits. Some of those include:
– Reducing stress
– Improving concentration and creative thinking
– Increasing Vitamin D levels
– Helping our bodies regulate sleep patterns
– Helping us develop a deeper sense of spirituality

If you can’t get outside, even viewing the natural surroundings outside your window can be relaxing. And if you’re an animal lover, you can always check out explore.org and watch their animal cameras.

Bumblebee in a Rhododendron bloom

DAY 5

Increase water intake by 1 glass.

We all know how important it is to drink enough water, but sometimes it’s hard to remember to get it all in. The general recommendation is 6 – 8 glasses per day. If you’re not currently drinking enough, an easy way to work your way up is to just add one glass each day until you reach your goal.

DAY 6

Move around for at least 1 minute each hour you’re awake.

Sometimes we think we have to get in a certain number of minutes to receive any benefits from increasing our movement. The fact is, those minutes add up, and we can benefit from even small increases. Also, once we get moving a little at a time, we can start to build on what we’re already doing and increase our activity as we get stronger.

Remember, movement doesn’t have to be structured exercise. It can be something as simple as walking around your home or doing some stretching every hour.

DAY 7

Make 1 of your quarantine foods just a little healthier.

Right now, because fresh food may be harder to come by, or because we’re buying things that will last for awhile, we may have some foods that aren’t ideal. That’s okay – as we already talked about, nobody can eat perfectly all the time. And right now, we’re having to adjust to the circumstances.

In yesterday’s Wellness Wednesday post, I talked about some ways we can make those quarantine foods a little healthier. https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/wellness-making-your-…/

Rana chicken tortelloni with broccoli, herbs and extra-virgin olive oil (and a sprinkle of cheese)

I started with Rana chicken tortelloni, then added broccoli, herbs, and extra-virgin olive oil to make it healthier.

DAY 8

Do one thing for your brain health. 

Whether it’s learning a new skill, playing brain games, or working a crossword puzzle, keeping your brain engaged can keep it healthy. For more ways to keep your brain healthy, you can go to https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/wellness-wednesday-how….

DAY 9

Name 1 Thing you’re good at.

What does this have to do with wellness? Too often, we allow our negative thoughts to take over and convince us that we’re not good at anything. This can make us hesitant to try new things or take away our motivation to make ourselves a priority. 

Taking the time to stop and make note of the things we’re good at can remind us we’re worth taking care of. It can also give us a starting point when we start to make wellness changes. When we start with something we’re already good at and build on it, we increase our chances of success with making and maintaining those changes.

DAY 10

Try Meditation.

Learning to calm our minds and be in the present can have many wellness benefits. Many people are not comfortable with the idea of meditation because they think it involves ’emptying the mind.’ Rather than emptying the mind, mindfulness meditation teaches us to be present in the moment. You can read more about the benefits of mindfulness meditation at https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/wellness-wednesday-co…/

If you’re not comfortable with mindfulness meditation, why not try meditating on Scripture? As someone who relies on the Lord to get through each day, I can tell you that this can help calm our minds and give us a deeper understanding of Who God is.

DAY 11

Use ‘hand’ portions to fill your plate at each meal. This is an easy way to ensure you get a good balance of protein, carbs, and fat without weighing or measuring.

For an explanation of the hand portions, check out this post https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/wellness-wednesday-ea…/

Woman's Cupped Hand

DAY 12

Do 5 minutes of gentle stretching.

Gently stretching our muscles can improve blood flow and reduce soreness. Just remember – to reduce chances of injury, warm up your muscles first. You never want to stretch cold muscles.

DAY 13

Review your sleep hygiene.

Sleep is vital, but many of us don’t get enough of it. Reviewing our sleep can help us determine whether we’re setting ourselves up for success when it comes to sleep.

For some tips on how to get a better night’s sleep, check out this post https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/11-tips-to-help-you-g…/

DAY 14

Have a good belly laugh.

When we can find the humor in everyday life, we can contribute to our sense of wellbeing and perhaps even improve our overall wellness.

For information on the ways laughter can help improve our wellness and some suggestions for ways to have a good laugh, check out this post https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/wellness-laughter-rea…/

DAY 15

Call or send a note to a family member or friend.

Our relationships are important for our overall wellness. Sometimes we tend to undervalue the social dimension of wellness, but it’s critical to our overall wellness. We don’t exist in a vacuum, and we have to depend on others in some capacity pretty much every day. Good communication skills. treating others with respect, and forming meaningful relationships are key to optimal wellness.

You can read more about social wellness at https://reclaiminghopewellness.com/…/wellness-wednesday-le…/

DAY 16

Get 5 minutes of fresh air and/or sunshine.

Today’s challenge is to get some fresh air. Whether it’s getting out for a walk or just sitting on your back porch, breathing some fresh air and getting a little sun can help us feel better. Of course, if you’re going to be outside for any length of time, don’t forget your sunscreen.

DAY 17

Read or listen to a good book.

Reading can be relaxing, but it can also be good for brain health. Whether you’re reading for knowledge or pleasure, you can’t go wrong with a good book.

I’ve recently discovered Audible, and I like that it allows me to learn something while I’m doing other things. I can listen to a book while I clean, cook dinner, or even while I’m painting.

DAY 18

Eat to only 80% full at meals.

Did you know it takes your stomach 20 minutes to let your brain know you’re full? This means that by the time you feel full, you’re probably actually over-full.

The purpose of eating only until we feel about 80% full is to keep us from overeating by accident. It can help us reduce both the volume of food and number of calories we eat.

DAY 19

Do something creative.

Today’s the day to unleash your creativity! Whether it’s a more ‘typical’ creative pursuit or getting creative by “thinking outside the box” about a project or challenge, do something to allow your creativity to flow.

DAY 20

Try a new type of exercise.

Our bodies are so amazing! When we do the same type of exercise over and over, they adapt to what we’re doing. It doesn’t take as much effort and they don’t have to burn as many calories when they get accustomed to the demands placed on them. 

Changing up our exercise routine can give our bodies the little jolt they need to get out of adaptation mode and get back to work burning those calories.

So that’s our recap. There’s still time to join in….

We still have 11 more days of May’s ‘One Thing for Wellness’ Challenge. I’d love it if you’d join us for the rest of it. Just follow me on Facebook at https://facebook.com/HopeReclaiming.

Have you been participating in this month’s challenge? Which things have you found easiest? Which were more difficult? Please share!

Blessings,

~Terri

22 comments

    1. Thank you for participating in the challenge Wendi! I hope you’re finding it helpful. Don’t worry about playing catch-up; you can just resume with either the current day, or where you left off. Blessings to you sweet friend!

  1. This is an excellent recap, Terri! It’s brilliant to see everything together like this, and instead of feeling overwhelming you make everything so, so much more manageable, doable and enjoyable. It’s like the moving around for each hour, it only has to be small like one minute, so there’s no pressure or big expectations. I like the motto “every little helps” (which our Tesco supermarkets in the UK use!) because it really can all add up, much like all of these suggestions. Fantastico, Terri! xx

    1. Thank you so much Caz! I really do want to make wellness approachable for all of us, even those of us who have health challenges. I agree with your motto “every little helps.” I think so often, we feel like we have to do big things when really, little things done consistently can have a much larger impact. Hope you’re starting to feel better sweet friend. Sending lots of love and hugs your way!

  2. Great ideas Terri, I started off with some similar to this at the beginning of lock down but then just kept forgetting, thanks for the reminder. X

  3. Thanks for the welcome reminders Terri, I achieve 3 & 4 in the one. I drink hot water instead of tea, so that adds about 5 mugs of water to my intake daily plus on a wakeful night I drink a pint of water.

    1. Thanks for sharing Marie! It sounds like you’ve found a genius way for getting your water in every day. My hubby and son tease me about the amount of water I drink. I always have a glass (or bottle) beside me. Sending hugs!

      1. I think thirst and a dry mouth are a regular part of fibro/fatigue Terri and staying hydrated is very important. You’re my twin, lol, always a water bottle or pint glass at my side!

  4. Out of all your posts Terri, I think that this one was really hit home for me. You really gave a lot of good suggestions. I think it’s great to hear from others and incorporate what you’ve learned from them into your lives to help it! Keep at it girl, cuz I’ll be always looking forward to learning new things from your posts!

    1. Thank you so much Mark! I’m so glad you found it helpful. I’ve enjoyed doing all these ‘one things’ this month, and I hope it’s been helpful for those who have been doing it with me. Thanks so much for your kind words, my friend. You are such an encouragement to me!

  5. I love all these tips Terri &:have implemented most 😀
    I was eating 100% healthy & got so tired with always missing out on old favorites, so have implemented your 80/20 but more 90/10 for me (as I’m prediabetic) which has sated my appetite interest again 😉
    Blessings,
    Jennifer

    1. Thanks so much for sharing Jennifer! I’m glad you found a way to have the things you really enjoy occasionally. When we’re too restrictive, sometimes it can have a negative effect on our wellness instead of the positive one we were aiming for. Blessings to you sweet friend!

  6. I haven’t joined in with the challenge yet – seems I am busier than usual, lol. I’ve been thinking about posture a lot lately – lost so much core strength through years of bed, and even now that I can walk short distances, I feel the weakness in my spine – wanting to curl. Your post, once again is timely. Thank you for being you and sharing that with all of us.

    1. Thanks so much for sharing V.J.! Posture is something I have to work on constantly. It’s so much more comfortable to slouch, but good posture can contribute to our overall wellness in so many ways. Sending hugs your way sweet friend!

      1. Synchronistic to this, our news had a clip on how to maintain a good posture through breathing exercises. Love it when a plan comes together.

  7. These are great points for anyone’s well being Terri!

    And I see several of my regular readers here so I’m guessing that’s how you found me 🙂

    1. Thanks so much Kate! The Wellness Wednesday posts are geared toward helping anyone, regardless of where they’re starting from, improve their wellness. I’m pretty sure I found you through Marie’s blog, Creating Space. Thanks for stopping by! Blessings to you!

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