Thousands of studies have been conducted on the mind + body connection. The evidence is clear that our mind’s health does affect our body’s, and vice versa. Doing your best to balance your health, both mentally and physically, can drastically improve how you feel on a daily basis.
According to The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, aerobic exercises can relieve symptoms of anxiety and depression due to increased blood circulation to the brain. Exercising can improve confidence and self-esteem, uplifting you and preparing you for a full day.
In addition to these benefits, it also adds several benefits to your overall health and wellbeing, which will have natural positive effects on your mind. For example, Mayo Clinic states that daily exercise boosts energy and promotes a full night’s rest. With these two aspects factored in, productivity and inspiration may arise easier than without exercise.
If you are experiencing feelings of overwhelm, stress, anxiety, depression or loneliness, you can try going on a 30-minute walk and then journaling about the experience. Did your mood improve after the walk? Did you feel more connected to yourself during and after it?
For those experiencing low energy, Emerald Psychiatry recommends starting with a shorter time and working your way up. This could manifest as five minutes of walking around your home per day and eventually increasing the time by five more minutes if you feel your energy growing. Taking these small steps can still improve mindfulness and lessen feelings of stress.
As for emotional health, physical movement can assist in the processing and releasing of emotions. Frontiers in Psychology conducted an 8-week study to discover if aerobic jogging and yoga can increase emotional regulation. The results: both physical practices improved emotional regulation, mindfulness and physical fitness. Participants experienced better focus and steadier moods by the end of the study.
There are plenty of exercises you can participate in to improve your mental and physical health, including dancing, running, swimming, biking, HIIT, cross fit, yoga and much more. Overall, the most important thing is treating your mind and body with love and kindness and doing what you feel comfortable with.