Back to basics
Would you buy a house if the foundations were not good? Or buy table with only two legs? No I’m sure you wouldn’t! However, when we fail to pay attention to our own basic needs we struggle and sometimes we fall down. Given the challenges and uncertainty that the world is facing it’s easy to forget the basics.
The four basics: Exercise – Sleep – Food – Relationships
Why is exercise important? In a nutshell the human body was designed to move. In pre-historic times it was essential for survival. Today we know it is good for our physical health but it is also good for our mental health. When we exercise the brain releases important neurotransmitters such as serotonin (a mood stabiliser) and dopamine (the reward chemical) which both play an important role in mental health. So exercise is a basic requirement.
Sitting down on the job
With the advent of technology more of us are sedentary during our working day which means less serotonin and dopamine. Sitting down for long periods of time can lead to poor posture and with increasing numbers of people working from home, we can all feel more isolated; isolation can often lead to depression.
In past times when people had more manual and physical jobs there wasn’t the same basic need for exercise in their free time but the world of work has changed and so we now need to add in exercise to our daily life.
On your marks get ready!
In the past year many people have taken up running but of course, that might not appeal to everyone (myself included) so taking a walk is fine too. With gyms closed there are lots of virtual exercise classes on both the internet and tv and a whole range of options from yoga, HIIT and ballet to stretching classes – basically you just need to move the furniture out of the way and get that serotonin and dopamine boosted! Furthermore, nobody can see you in the privacy of your own home! Don’t forget your mental health is as important as your physical health so get moving in whatever way is right for you and get that basic foundation stone in place.
Next time we’ll look at the other basics.
Stay safe and stay well
Sources of help: