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TAKING WELLNESS FROM AWARENESS TO ACTION

Hey, Wellness Warriors!

We believe that the word ‘wellness’ is a verb. Wellness needs to be practiced repeatedly. Let’s face it – that’s not easy! It’s one thing to learn about wellness, but it’s also important to prioritize and practice wellness.

Neuroplasticity is the brain’s way of changing itself over time. Our brains are super cool because we can always change them, especially before the age of 25. Don’t worry if you are older than 25; you can still change your brain (it just takes a little more practice!). The more you use a specific part of the brain, the stronger that part becomes. “Neurons that fire together, wire together,” meaning that prioritizing your wellness, again and again, will send consistent messages to the brain that your wellness matters, increasing the likelihood of your wellness practices becoming part of your everyday routine!

Thank goodness! Let’s be honest, practicing being well is hard! However, the more you prioritize your wellness, the easier it becomes in the long run. For example, you can’t learn to play the piano by reading about the piano or watching YouTube videos. Instead, you have to actually practice playing the piano over and over. The brain works the same way. To get good at playing the piano or implementing wellness strategies and techniques, the more you practice them, the better you’ll become.

So, how can you start prioritizing and practicing your wellness? Here are two of our favorite tools:

  • Check-in often and find your breath: It’s important to check in with yourself throughout the day to see how you are feeling and to assess your needs. Too often, it becomes the end of the day, and we realize we haven’t been present at all. Try the 3/6 breath technique. It’s a simple yet powerful breathing exercise that can help you reduce stress and anxiety, promote relaxation, and increase focus and clarity. The technique involves inhaling for three seconds, holding the breath for six seconds, and exhaling for six seconds. This rhythmic breathing pattern helps slow down your heart rate, reduce muscle tension, and calm your mind. It’s an easy exercise that you can do anywhere, at any time, and with just a few minutes of practice, you can experience its benefits. The 3/6 breath technique is a great tool to add to your stress-management toolbox and can be particularly helpful during moments of intense stress or anxiety.

  • Brain Dump: This is a powerful technique for clearing your mind and reducing stress and overwhelm. It involves taking a few minutes to write down all of the thoughts, ideas, and tasks that are swirling around in your head, without worrying about organizing or prioritizing them. This can be very helpful before bed or really any time during the day when you may be feeling overwhelmed. Here’s how you can try the brain dump activity:

  • Find a quiet space where you can focus and won’t be interrupted.

  • Get a pen and a piece of paper or open a blank document on your computer.

  • Set a timer for 5 minutes or however long you feel you need to get everything out of your head.

  • Start writing down everything that comes to mind, without filtering or judging your thoughts. Write down tasks, ideas, worries, to-dos, and anything else that’s on your mind.

  • Don’t worry about organizing or prioritizing your thoughts at this stage. The goal is simply to get everything out of your head and onto paper.

  • Keep writing until the timer goes off or until you feel that you’ve emptied your mind.

  • Once you’ve finished, take a few deep breaths – you may choose to rip up the paper and throw it out. This is not about creating a to-do list but rather clearing the racing thoughts in your head.

No matter which skill or technique inspires you, it’s important to practice your wellness skills. You want your wellness tools to be at your fingertips and ready when you need them!

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