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8 Everyday Habits For A Healthier Mind & Body

Now that the New Year is here, I want to work on creating healthy habits in my everyday life. I know that making drastic New Year resolutions can sometimes seem daunting and just impossible to keep up with, so I want to incorporate these easy, everyday practices and to share them with those who also want to create changes in their lives.

Avoid using your phone as soon as you wake up

I know it is tempting to use your phone right when you wake up because you are warm and comfortable in bed, and your phone is probably within arm’s reach. Don’t touch it! When I use my phone right when I wake up, it usually takes me a lot longer to actually get out of bed and start my day because I want to scroll through all my socials. Trust me on this and wait to start using your phone until after you’ve eaten breakfast. You can even make it less tempting by putting your phone on “Do Not Disturb” so that you won’t wake up and see all your notifications and feel like you have to go through them all.

Make extra time for your self care routine

Sometimes I like to set a couple of extra minutes of my morning to have more time to calmly and slowly go through my skincare routine and help make my skin feel hydrated and clean. On days when I feel like pampering myself, I treat myself to face or eye masks and gently roll my face using a chilled face roller.

Drink a cup of water with lemon before breakfast

I have always heard that drinking lemon water is an easy way to keep your body healthy, but I never really knew exactly how it helps improve my body. Readings Cleveland Clinic’s article on “7 Reasons to Start Your Day With Lemon Water” was extremely helpful to learn about all the benefits of drinking lemon water such as combating digestive problems. During an unpredictable time in a pandemic, it’s so vital and necessary to do whatever we can to have strong immune systems.

Drink coffee after you’ve eaten breakfast

If you drink coffee first thing in the morning on an empty stomach, you can prevent a stomach ache or nausea when you eat something beforehand. Mornings can be extremely busy and many people don’t have time to cook breakfast, but eating something as simple as oatmeal, fruit, or granola bars will be the right choice to start the day.

Listen to calm music or a motivational podcast

I am a huge fan of listening to calm music or a podcast episode while I am working. Lofi music is one of the best things I have ever discovered since starting college. Not only does it make me feel like I am studying at an aesthetically-pleasing coffee shop, but it also helps me stay focused and not get distracted with my thoughts while working for long periods of time. Lofi music is mostly instrumental and is immensely calming and entertaining, so it doesn’t distract me as much as other genres. When I listen to music with words, I have the urge to sing it, or I concentrate too much on the lyrics, which can be distracting.

I love listening to podcasts while I am doing more active things, such as going through my skincare routine, making breakfast, cleaning my room, doing my hair and makeup, showering, etc. In my opinion, it makes these daily routines more enjoyable. I highly recommend finding some podcasts that speak to you and incorporating them into your life.

Do more of what makes you feel confident

I typically neglect to do things I enjoy on a busy day because it doesn’t seem that important. For example, I always forget how good it makes me feel when I put on some light makeup and do my hair. On busier days, you might not have time to do your makeup and hair and put on a nice outfit, but try incorporating at least one of these things that can help you feel put together. The process of getting ready in the mornings gives me a boost of confidence and I am in a much better mental state and mood.

Move your body and be active

When I end my day at the gym, I always feel extremely accomplished about my day and the choices I am making for a healthier body. However, you don’t need to go to the gym to stay active. Go on a walk with your friends, put on your favorite playlist and dance around in your room, or watch a YouTube tutorial on simple yoga stretches. Be creative and find what type of activity you enjoy the most.

Tidy up your area before bed

By the end of the day, you are probably so exhausted to even think about cleaning up the space around you, but simply putting on a 15 minute timer to clean as much as you can makes a great difference for the next day. I promise that when you wake up in the morning and see a clean bedroom, desk, kitchen, or bathroom, you will already start your day with a more positive mindset. Making your bed in the mornings is also a quick way to have a cleaner space while not being tempted to getting back to sleep.

Rather than neglecting these vital steps, we should try to incorporate them into our lives as a form of self love and self respect. I hope these habits will encourage you to start the New Year off strong, but remember that there will be hard days when you just feel like staying in bed, eating food that is not so healthy, and living in clothes that you have been wearing for days (which is all valid!). I hope that these easy habits will help make your life a little more enjoyable — good luck with the New Year!

Cindy Gonzalez

UC Irvine '25

Cindy is a first year at the University of California Irvine pursuing a major in English. When she is not studying, she likes to watch 2000's tv shows, get glammed up, explore OC, or watch the sunset with some good food.
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