What Does It Mean To Live Holistically?

We throw a lot of terms around, and one of the best ones to know, understand, remember, and truly implement is “holistic.” What does this mean?

To live a holistic life means to approach yourself as an entire, interconnected system. It means recognizing that your health doesn’t just come down to one thing, but that a healthy life means improving each piece of the puzzle. A healthy life involves your body, mind and spirit!

If you want to live holistically, the first step is to be kind to yourself. Here are a few great ideas to add a little more kindness and a little more health into your daily life.

Increase your water intake.

It is estimated more than 75% of people are chronically dehydrated…assume your one of them. Dehydration can cause headaches, chronic fatigue, toxicity, digestive issues, pre-mature aging and high cholesterol. Many of these symptoms then go on to pose more serious health risks. Every cell in your body needs to be properly hydrated to function properly and flush toxins. If you live in a hot climate, drink caffeine or consume alcohol you may need even more hydration. Dehydration not only effects your mental and physical state but also can lead to blockages in your energy body as well.

Start a weekly grocery list that includes 10-12 seasonal fruits and vegetables.

Buy from local farmers markets first whenever possible. The less your food travels before it ends up on your plate the higher nutrients it will yield while carrying a lower carbon footprint for the environment. Plus you would be surprised on how much cheaper naturally grown pesticide-free produce is at your farmers market or CSA compared to your chain grocer.

Turn off your television (and laptop, smartphone) and take it OUTDOORS OR GET MOVING!

DO something you enjoy each day for at least 30 minutes. Go for a hike, walk your dogs, take a yoga class, etc. Whatever you choose, do something that motivates you and releases you from the daily grind. Exercise helps you reduce stress and boosts your mood and self-esteem. It releases ‘feel good’ endorphins and it’s pretty hard to have negative thoughts when your on a runners high or taking in some beautiful scenery. Take special notice to how you feel immediately before and after you exercise and eventually maybe even add on to your 30 minutes.

Take time to be alone.

Finding time to reflect on the day and your thoughts is important. Consider keeping a journal which is ideal and allows you to write your intentions, aspirations, and thoughts privately for you to reflect on. Writing also heals and helps you to process your emotions that if left suppressed and buried can cause disease in the body. Start a gratitude journal and take time every day to reflect on what you are grateful for and what is going well in your life, then free write with whatever comes to mind. Track your healthy habits. goals and intentions. Write how you want your health to be a  month, six months or a year from now. You will be surprised just how much manifests from your journal!
– via sarah-rose.net

Ready To Get Started?

It’s time to start viewing yourself as a whole being – a whole body, a whole mind, and you have the potential to be a self-healing system! Take these ideas into mind and see what you want to start implementing in your own life.

Nature.

Being out in nature, where the air is filled with salubrious negative ions, lifts the spirits, relaxes the body, and gives us a sense of well-being. The air all around us is electrically charged with positive and negative ions. Most of us live and work in environments dominated by technology-surrounded by computers, microwaves, air conditioners, heaters, TV’s, and vehicular traffic. These and other “conveniences” of modern life emit excessive amounts of positive ions into the air we breathe, which can result in mental or physical exhaustion and affect overall wellness as described above. But when you’re in nature, especially surrounded by water, like the ocean, or in the mountains surrounded by trees and greenery, negative ions abound. In fact, the revolving water generated by fountains creates negative ions that cause air particles to achieve electrical (ionic) balance. You can increase negative ions in your home or office space by the addition of green plants and water fountains.

Simplify.

Simplification is to your life what healthy foods, sleep, water, exercise, and positive thinking are to your body; they all rejuvenate your life and reduce stress. Start by de-cluttering your personal environment, either at work and/or home. Even something as simple as organizing your desk will make you more efficient and help to relieve stress. What makes a world of difference in my life is the 15 minutes I spend before I leave the office. I use that time to straighten my desk and make a list of all the things I want to do the next day. I can go home with my work left neatly behind me and the knowledge that tomorrow I can easily pick up where I left off.

Living an uncluttered life (and this includes drawers, cupboards, closets, and day-to-day scheduling) gives me time for the things I really care about, like time to think, to read, to walk in nature, to meditate, and watch the sunset. Through simplification, I am more clear-minded and, I believe, a kinder, more sensitive person. But it’s hard for me to live a stressless life when my environment is surrounded by clutter and I have no time during the day to call my own.

Spend a few minutes each day and clean out one drawer, cupboard, or closet. That’s easier than committing to taking an entire week off to simplify your entire life. One step at a time is practicable and within a month or so, you will be living and working in an environment that brings you more joy and less stress.

Gratitude.

Be positive and grateful every day. The link between mind and body has been contemplated since the time of Plato, but it’s only recently that research has been done on the neurophysiology of the brain. Every thought transmits instructions to the body through some 70 trillion nerve cells, so when you think a negative thought, your immune system is immediately compromised. By the same token, when you think positive thoughts, your immune system is enhanced and your whole body benefits. Furthermore, an anxious or fearful mind instructs the body to be likewise-tense and nervous. A calm mind creates a calm body.

So choose your thoughts wisely. A new report from the Mayo Proceedings suggests that individuals who profess pessimistic explanations for life events have poorer physical health and a higher mortality rate compared with either optimists or “middle-of-the-road” types, regardless of age or sex. In fact, every 10-point increase in the study’s pessimism scores was associated with a 19% increase in the risk of death. Conversely, participants whose test scores indicated optimism had a survival rate significantly better than expected. The reason for this may be that pessimists may be more “passive” or have a “darker” outlook on life than other personality types, leaving them more prone to “bad life events”-such as illness, injury, and depression. The researchers concluded that pessimism itself is a “risk factor” for early death, and should be viewed in the same way as other risk factors, such as obesity, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol level.

One way to foster a positive attitude is to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. Gratitude (and appreciation) is a magnetic force that draws more good to each one of us. It’s a dynamic spiritual energy that allows you to exert a powerful influence on your body, life, and world. Most importantly, it’s a stellar stress-buster. What you think about consistently, you bring about in your life. Keep a gratitude journal and each day write down at least three things for which you are grateful. Focusing on the positive things, even during the most difficult times, is the perfect remedy to reduce and alleviate stress. And if you don’t feel positive and grateful, “fake it until you make it,” as the saying goes.

In other words, “acting as if” will help you through many challenging times and carry you on to better times. It was Shakespeare who championed this sage advice in his immortal words in Hamlet: “Assume a virtue, if you have it not.”
– via American Holistic Health Association

Do you live a holistic life? How are you working to be healthier, happier, and a more positive force in the world?