How to Practice Wellness in Everyday Life

by Kendall X. Hicks II, Wellness Coordinator with The Community at Sunset Wood

Having a daily routine and structure is very important for everyday life. It all starts from getting out of bed, getting dressed, and seeing what the day offers you. There are many challenges when you start to get older, but I would like to give a few tips on providing you with an excellent balanced day. Our Sunset Wood Wellness model hits 4-pillars of wellness – Physical – Mental – Spiritual and Social, so let’s go over each one of these in a bit more detail.

Let us say you roll or hop out of bed and the first thing you should do is, start your day off with a few stretches, prayer, meditation or Yoga. It is a great way to get your body going and give your mind some time to relax before you start the day. In addition, this has been proven time and again to reduce both stress & anxiety. Next, you should find some breakfast; we all heard the famous phrase “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” – originally, this came from a marketing ad in order to sell more cereal. However, it actually has value when it comes to our physical wellness, too!. According to, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, as it provides sustenance and energy for whatever activities lay ahead.” Another essential part is finding the time and place to exercise, whether it is in your home, outside or in a gym. You should exercise for at least 15 to 30 minutes a day. An excellent way to keep yourself accountable is to contact a friend or family member after you have worked out and tell them you have done it. As in saying that, staying connected is a perfect way to stay social. Research has shown that older adults’ depression and health issues can indeed hinder you in the end. Therefore, by using modern social platforms like Zoom, Facebook, Skype, and other video chat tools, it can help you keep in touch with friends and family – even creating clubs can give you the sense of being around many people. For example, book club, arts and crafts, woodwork, cars, and team meetings, can be done online with a camera phone, laptop, or tablet.

Another critical topic to talk about is staying intellectually active or keeping the brain thinking. Now that we have been in quarantine, it might be the best time to find old or new projects that you have always wanted to do but never had enough time. Hands-on activities like drawing, building, and knitting are great ways to activate both body & min. There are also brain games, including Sudoku, chess, crossword puzzles, and maybe even words with friends. Now the last topic to talk about is getting enough sleep; studies show that “Older adults need about the same amount of sleep as all adults – 7 to 9 hours each night”. In addition, as we get older our bodies need more time to recover which means that sleep becomes even more important. Create a sleep routine and try to avoid napping during the middle of the day. Many people fall victim to sleeping too much during the day and being restless all night. Remember, not only is length of sleep important, but quality sleep is equally as high of a priority! When speaking of quality, keep your room a comfortable temperature,  and stay away from caffeine – these great ways to get a good night’s sleep and wake up refreshed and ready to go. In addition, although you may think a few glasses of alcohol could “knock you out,” keep in-mind that alcohol turns from a depressant to a stimulant after being processed by the body. This means that your “night cap” could actually be hindering your sleep as opposed to helping it!

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