There is an overwhelming amount of choices when it comes to improving your health and wellness. You can start with exercise, nutrition, stress management or something else. But there is one thing that should be the first step in any health and wellness change.
Creating a positive mindset.
Mindset is sometimes called “the story we tell ourselves.” It’s our attitude toward things in our life. And we have control over our mindset.
Whether it is a modest goal to release weight or an unexpected illness, having a positive mindset can improve your physical health.
Research is backing up what holistic practitioners have told us for generations. The mind-body connection is real.
And research is showing that it may be far more powerful than we thought.
Health Mindset Study
Researchers at Stanford University looked at a bunch of people’s health and wellness lifestyle habits, as well as health markers.
What they found was that the people who thought they were a lot less active had a higher risk of death than the general public. And, they also had up to 71% higher risk of death than people who thought they were more active.
Even if they weren’t less active!
How is this even possible that people who simply thought they were less active had higher risks, even if it wasn’t true?
There are a couple of ideas why. One is that maybe if we feel like we’re less active, it may make us feel more stressed. And stress isn’t good for our mental or physical health. Second, there may be a bit of a mind-body connection where the body embodies what the mind visualizes. Researchers don’t know why, but what matters is having a good mindset.
So, here are a couple of ways to boost your mindset for health:
Aim for Good Enough
Almost no one eats perfectly seven days a week. It’s inevitable that obsessing over the quality and quantity of everything we eat or drink isn’t necessarily a great mindset to have. (Read my blog Mindful Eating here)
It can bring on binging, shame, and guilt – none of which are great ways to get healthy.
We want to get healthier by making better choices and building better habits. And these are usually best done incrementally – one step at a time.
So, instead of having a black and white approach where everything is good or bad, why not try aiming for good enough to empower ourselves to make better choices, instead of perfect choices.
Stop Making Tradeoffs
When you try to earn a gluttonous weekend by eating clean during the week, you’re making a tradeoff. You’re telling yourself that, as long as you’re good most of the week, you can go wild on the weekend.
And that’s not healthy because the mindset is jumping from one extreme to the other. You’re controlling what you do all week and thinking about how to indulge over the weekend.
Live as though you’re trying to do well every single day. Take actions that support your health and wellness. You’re doing your best, and that’s good enough.
Mindset for health can be a powerful tool for better physical health. There’s a proven mind-body connection that research can measure.
Thinking positively and dropping the black/white and good/bad labels, can help you reach your health goals.
How is your mindset for health? Which of these tips resonate with you the most? Let me know in the comments below.