Our relationships, our goals, our health, our appearance – they all develop and change over time because as the world we live in evolves, naturally, so do we. Whether we realize it or not, most of us are constantly searching for ways to better ourselves – emotionally, mentally, physically, and so-on. But the key behind self-improvement is to take a holistic approach by considering our well-being from the inside out, including all of the internal and external factors that make us up as a whole person. To jumpstart your journey toward a better you (inside and out), here are a few pointers:
Get to know yourself
It’s not to say that you can’t or shouldn’t try something new or spontaneous on your self-improvement journey, but having a strategy ahead of time will set up you up to thrive! For your metamorphosis to come to fruition, it helps to set realistic intentions by reflecting on your values, understanding your unique qualities, and capitalizing on your strengths. If your plan is to exercise more, consider factors that may influence your objective. For example, are you a night owl or an early riser? An early riser might find it more practical to go for a jog in the morning over a late-night gym session. Likewise, do you find yourself to be independent or shy and reserved? Surely, the latter might be more inclined to opt for an at-home workout, but challenging yourself to find a workout buddy or attending a group fitness class can improve other areas of your life simultaneously, like gaining confidence from breaking out of your shell.
Make time for beauty and personal care
When we think of “being healthy,” our thoughts typically default to traditional ideas like adopting better eating habits – important, albeit limiting. Yes, carefully considering what we put in our bodies is essential for our health. Although, in this article featured in the Huffington Post, psychologist Vivian Diller, Ph.D., also points out that “taking care of ourselves, even spending a few minutes putting on makeup, caring for our skin or getting our hair done can positively impact our health as well.” Whether you go all out with a transformational makeover, or take positive baby steps by investing in a product for your particular skin condition or type, allocating a moment or two for grooming will aid in relaxation and promote confidence! Plus, by choosing personal care products or services that are sustainable or cruelty-free, you can worry less about polluting your body, skin, and the environment.
Make adjustments: out with the old, in with the new
According to a Zen Proverb, “Knowledge is learning something new every day. Wisdom is letting go of something every day.” We can all benefit from this concept and apply it to any aspect of our being that hinders us from reaching our full potential, including tangible objects, unhealthy mindsets, relationships – you name it. Start with small adjustments, such as your everyday habits. If you’re a busy-bee, you might find yourself skipping breakfast or neglecting your lunch break. But your body and brain need proper fuel to function at their best. An easy solution is to make a grab-and-go smoothie with a superfood powder containing plant-protein and other nutrients to keep you feeling good – you can even prepare it the night before!
Next, reflect on what else is holding you back from feeling like the best you. Is there an interpersonal relationship with a coworker, friend, or partner that you’re outgrowing? Experts at GoodTherapy suggest talking to a therapist or counselor about what constitutes an unhealthy relationship. It helps to dig deep and think: Is this relationship serving my highest good? Is this relationship negatively impacting other areas of my life? Is this relationship detrimental to my self-esteem? Letting go of toxic people will only help further your progress.
From there, it’s time to look externally – is your environment productive or filled with clutter? Clutter can cause stress and anxiety, which can impact our gut health and wreak havoc on our overall well-being. It might be time to channel your inner Marie Kondo and get rid of excess material possessions, especially clothing. Aside from the calm and peaceful aura from a tidy and simple space, there are clothing cleanout services like the online thrift store thredUP that offer extra perks like cash-back (which can help ease financial stress) or donations to charities (which can give you a sense of fulfillment). Why not reap the rewards for taking steps towards a better you? By now, you should believe that you’re deserving of them!
Ultimately, we should all strive to be the best us that we can be to live our healthiest and most fulfilling lives. The journey to self-improvement takes dedication, but you’re bound to find motivation, happiness, and learn more about yourself that you may not have known before!