Galway Advertiser 2004/2004_09_30/GA_3009_E1_018.pdf
September 30 2004
H E A LT H
1. Get plenty of sleep the night before. It will recharge your batteries, put you in good form and help you deal with the challeges of the day ahead. 2. Wake up slowly. You should ease yourself into the day, not jump out of bed cursing because you woke up late. Buy a radio alarm with a gentle repeat facility which will be kinder to your ears and system than a jarring one that will only make you more irritable. 3. Start the day with a laugh. If that sounds too demanding, at least consider a giggle. Adults on average laugh six times a day compared with children who laugh 150 times. By increasing your daily dose of laughter you could live longer and maybe even prevent illnesses, such as cancer and heart disease, say experts. It is being called the latest weapon against heart disease, apparently heart-healthy people are more likely to laugh frequently and heartily than those with heart disease. It also boosts the immune system. 4. Go for a walk. Whether it's a mad dash to work or a leisurely saunter with your dog, walking in the fresh air is good for you. Natural light is known to improve mood. So, take a deep breath, look around you and enjoy the view. 5. Take definite meal breaks. You need regular meals to keep up your energy levels and maintain a good mood. Eating at your desk or on the trot can wreak havoc with your digestive system and reduce the amount of nourishment you are likely to absorb from your food. Aim to have at least three decent meals, especially breakfast. 6. Avoid rushing and panicking. Get up 15 minutes earlier. This will give you time to spare in case something goes wrong or things take longer than expected. If going to work, aim to leave 10 minutes before you have to in order to allow time for heavy traffic. 7. Before leaving the house pause to make sure you have remembered everything. Set out early for appointments and always prepare for the unexpected. That will help you remain calm no matter how stressful the day turns out. 8. Don't rely on your memory. Get a small notebook or use post-it pads to write down
20 ways to have a good day
Take each day as it comes.
addresses, phone numbers or daily reminders and take them with you in your bag. Leave notes on your mirror, fridge or car door to remind you of important dates and errands. 9. Be well organised. This will eliminate a lot of stress from your life. Plan ahead for each day, make a list of what you have to do, set aside the clothes you will need and make contingency plans lest anything goes wrong. A good easy-to-read diary is a lifesaver and will encourage you to be more organised. Have an area in the house where you put everything you need to take with you the next day. Keep a small notebook and pen in your bag or jacket so you can jot down things. 10. Avoid negative people. This is especially important if you are feeling tired or unwell because they will only pull you down. Instead, make a point of saying hello to the cheerful,
relaxed ones who have a "blue sky" attitude to life. You'll be glad you did. 11. Take each day as it comes. Many happy-go-lucky people swear by this philosophy. Remind yourself that today may be the only day there is so make it a good one. 12. Do not try to do more than is realistically possible. Learn to prioritise and do the essential things first. Let go of the pressures of tomorrow and yesterday's regrets and channel all your energy into living for the moment. 13. Be decisive. This is a skill worth learning if you don't have it already. It will free up time and help clear your head of unnecessary mental clutter. If you have a big decision to make, take time to look at the advantages and disadvantages of taking a particular course of action, then make your mind up.
Don't spend hours or days mulling over the issue or worse still, waste valuable time wondering if you did the right thing after you've made the decision. 14. Concentrate on the task in hand. Try to leave other problems behind you. Worrying about work or home or things you cannot change when you are doing something will only diminish your concentration and make the job last twice as long. 15. Be positive. Be determined to look on the bright side even if the rain is bucketing down, you overslept, or your boss is an ogre who thinks charm is a word which comes before bracelet. Your attitude can colour your interpretation of everything so smile, see the best in people and try to make allowances for those who annoy you.
16. Programme your leisure time in advance. Don't view relaxation as a luxury, see it as a vital contributor to a healthy lifestyle. Plan your free time carefully, decide what you will do after you finish work or get the children to school. 17. Set realistic goals. Know your strengths and weaknesses and aim to be the best you can within your own limitations. Don't feel you have failed if you do not come out on top every time. 18. Reward yourself. If you've just done something stressful or are having a bad time generally, be kind to yourself. Buy a little gift or a bunch of flowers, have lunch out or a leisurely soak in a scented bath
learn. It will be difficult at first, especially if you have spent the last few years saying "yes" to unwanted invitations and unreasonable demands. Taking an assertive stand does not mean you have to be aggressive or rude when turning someone down. You can soften the refusal if you wish by saying something like "I'd really love to help out. Unfortunately, I'm just not available." 20. Be prepared for emergencies. Make sure you have stamps and writing paper, batteries, pens that write, at least some clothes which are pressed and ready to wear and enough petrol in your car in case of an emergency. Consider stocking up on groceries too and taking note of items which are running low. That way, if you have to work late or cannot get out to shop, you will have some food on hand.
19. Learn to say "no" politely. This is one of the most valuable skills you will ever