Your body is already amazing, and the best way to let it do its job is by taking a holistic approach towards your health and wellness. According to Deepak Chopra, you can maintain and improve your well-being by living with intent and paying special attention to the 6 important pillars below.
Your body is busy restoring itself while you sleep. Chopra believes that getting enough quality sleep is extremely important, and as your body truly is the best pharmacy in the world, it’s best not disturb it during those hours of hard work. Better yet, enhance the quality of your sleep by giving these tips a try!
- Try this Ayurvedic recipe before going to bed: a cup of warm milk mixed with honey and cardamom to stimulate your body’s ability to produce serotonin. You’ll sleep like a baby and wake up feeling rested and joyful.
- Listen to ambient music, give yourself a foot massage to calm your nervous system or try another of these Ayurvedic bedtime routines.
2. Meditation and Stress Management
Why so busy? Leading a stressful life can take its toll on your health. Practising mindfulness and meditation will help you slow down, take a breath and reflect on your day. Meditation is a tried and tested method to reduce stress, so by meditating you are actively improving your physical and mental well-being.
- Try this basic meditation exercise to calm and focus your mind.
3. Movement, Yoga and Pranayama
Whether or not you combine all three in one daily routine, exercising, practising yoga and pranayama are deeply intertwined. Prana… what? It is a very specific practice of breath control, rooted in yoga, and it has some very nice benefits.
Although we all know how beneficial exercise is for our health, not everyone is acquainted with the news that practising pranayama, as well as every yoga asana, has a very interesting effect on the vagus nerve. It’s the largest cranial nerve, responsible for regulating activity in the body. The vagus nerve has been found to activate the “relaxation response” of the parasympathetic nervous system. The result: a decrease in inflammation, stress and anxiety.
- When it comes to movement, any activity done properly is fine. However, the advice is to take at least 10,000 steps a day. At least, that’s what scientists say.
- If you are new at yoga, try Hatha Yoga routine for beginners.
- Start practising pranayama with these breathing lessons and put that vagus nerve to work.
Don’t let your emotions get in the way of…wait, stop. Let’s not pretend we should (or can) always simply decide to do away with our emotions when they’re inconvenient. Deal with them. Try to enjoy the great ones without grasping at them, and more importantly: don’t be afraid of the less pleasant emotions. They are there for a reason, so be kind towards yourself and pay attention to them. That’s not to say that you should keep them around for longer than they need to be. Finding healthy ways of releasing painful emotions is crucial to our well-being. And for cultivating healthy ones, of course.
- Set your intentions and ask yourself regularly: Who am I? What do I want? How can I serve?
5. Nutrition / Nourishment
Are you getting enough nutritious foods and eating to nourish your body? Or are you eating something because of other, more complex reasons? If so, don’t be too quick to judge yourself, but it definitely doesn’t hurt to pay more attention to what you use to nourish yourself. Eating seasonal, fresh and non-processed foods is always a good idea. Preferably organic and colourful fruits and veggies. Unprocessed foods that contain rich colour contain lots of antioxidants and phytonutrients.
- Don’t think of eating healthy as being on a diet. Think of it as a lifestyle meant to nourish your body and your soul. Try out different ways to make eating healthy, easy and more fun.
- Speaking of which, in need of food for the soul? Soulful cooking is the answer. Followed by a moment of soulful eating, of course.
6. Biological Rhythms
Deepak Chopra mentions four biological rhythms that are very significant when it comes to our well-being: the seasonal rhythm, the circadian rhythm, the lunar rhythm, and the tidal rhythm. According to Chopra, when we connect to the earth under our feet, we allow ourselves to become more in sync with these biological rhythms. In other words: we ground ourselves.
- Keep yourself grounded by connecting to nature on a daily basis. Go offline and go outside more often: take a walk or exercise outdoors. It also helps you find your balance when the seasons change.
- Watch this video and learn what a Full Moon Yoga Practice can do for your well-being.
Feeling healthier and more grounded already? In that case: congratulations, you’ve graduated from the well-being school! However, if you’re interested in learning more about Deepak Chopra’s holistic approach, we recommend reading his book. Be well!