You know the to-do list that’s always in the back of your head, but never really seems to get done? For me, this list often involves things that I know I should be doing for my own health and wellbeing, but usually get pushed further down the list until it’s often too late (cough… getting a ticket for an expired registration… cough.) Instead of waiting to get the flu to call my doctor or pulling my back to make a chiropractor appointment, I’m getting ahead of the game and taking care of two healthy lifestyle habits a month that I know will help make me a better person, wife, friend, employee, and, law-abiding citizen.
Here’s a list of personal health habits you should stop putting off, and just get. it. done.
image by kristen kilpatrick
Growing up, my mom always made sure we went to the dentist twice a year and, I never had a single cavity. Flash forward to post-college days of living on my own and, a hefty dental bill later. Instead of kicking yourself later for not taking care of your dental issues, make an appointment every 6 months for a deep clean and scan by the professionals. If you don’t have a regular dentist you visit, ask friends or coworkers who they go to, or compare reviews on a quick google search in your area. Also, companies like FLOSS and Castle Dental make it easy to get a walk in appointment at an affordable price.
We know skincare appointments can get pricey, but if you can afford to see a professional every once and while, you will truly reap the benefits. Working with a certified esthetician or dermatologist can help you figure out what your skin may be reacting to in the form of breakouts, and how to properly take care of it to prevent signs of aging and sun damage. They will also help you find the best products for your skin, and teach you how to use them to get that dewy glow we all know and want.
It’s important to know the point of regularity for your skin type — if you have pretty even-keeled insensitive skin, you may only need to make an appointment twice a year. This is the route Camille takes, and she makes it count with a clear and brilliant laser facial every 4 – 6 months. Our skin is our biggest organ, and it’s time we start taking better care of it.
image by hello fashion
Start Meeting with a Therapist
This is a big one, for so many reasons. Therapy has helped me throughout my life in more ways than I ever could have possibly imagined, and I can firmly say that I wouldn’t be the person I am today without it. Having a completely unbiased person listen to your deepest, darkest, or most ridiculous thoughts is so liberating. Even if you don’t have any deep dark secrets, we all get sad sometimes, and we need healthy coping skills to get through it.
If you’ve ever sought help from a mental health professional, you know just how important it is to find the right fit. Apps like CounselChat, Therapist Finder, and Talk Space can help ease the process of finding a great therapist in your area. When seeking help for your mental health, remember: you come first, and you deserve to have your mental health needs meet just as you would expect if you had a physical ailment.
Get a Yearly Checkup
Don’t wait until you have a 102 fever to call your doctor. Make an appointment with your internist for a physical and a blood test annually. And to all our fellow ladies, don’t keep putting off that dreaded pap-smear and mammogram. It takes a few minutes, and it just may save your life.
image by kristen kilpatrick
Go ahead, treat yourself. Your shoulders aren’t up to your ears or anything…
Take Care of Your Car
Make your dad proud, and treat your car with the same love and care that you would treat your pet or favorite makeup products. Get your inspection and registration stickers taken care of before they expire (did you know you can renew your registration at the grocery store?) Pay attention to the little sticker on your window that tells you when it’s time to get your oil changed (it’s either a certain amount of miles, or a specific date), and get your tires rotated regularly. So many pricey issues we all run into with our cars can be avoided with proper preventative care and routine maintenance.
image by chronicles of her
Walk or Ride a Bike Instead of Driving
Finding it hard to fit your workout in amongst work deadlines, happy hours, and house chores? You’re not alone. Get yourself a fitness tracker and start multitasking with your workout. Our favorite ways to get our steps in? Answering emails on the treadmill, taking conference calls while walking around the neighborhood, biking to the grocery store or to get coffee, and if we’re feeling really spunky, walking to a workout class — just think how happy you’ll be knowing you don’t have to stress about finding a parking spot and derailing your pre-yoga zen.
Clear Your Digital Clutter
Take time to organize your tech and wellbeing. Throw away those iPhones you’ll never use again, trash the notes from college or your last job you’re saving for no reason, and clear the mountain of files that have piled up on your desktop. Get an external hard drive and transfer things you want to save, but don’t need on the reg. Get an iCloud to store photos and files. Take the fear out of digital decluttering, and clean up your digital space for the new year. Here’s some simple steps for how to do it.
image by cali vintage
Meet with a Nutritionist
If you find yourself feeling bloated more often than not, running to the bathroom (or wish you were) after eating certain meals, or feel like you’re stuck in a fog after eating certain foods, it’s time to book an appointment with a nutritionist to find out why. Oftentimes we are allergic to specific foods or ingredients without realizing, and our bodies react through inflammation, IBS, heartburn, and other not so comfy feelings. A nutritionist can help you pinpoint things you may be allergic to, essential vitamins and minerals you could be lacking, and foods you should be eating (or avoiding) to feel your best.
Get Your Debt Under Control
If you’ve raked up a lot of debt over the years and find it keeps piling on, it may be time to wave your white flag and call a professional. When you begin to consider the hundreds of ways you can tackle paying off debt on your own, it’s no wonder it’s overwhelming and slow to happen. Make an appointment with a financial advisor to create a clear, monthly plan together. Take the pressure off yourself knowing you don’t have to figure it out all by yourself –chances are you’ll be able to pay it down a lot quicker (and save tons of interest money in the process) with some professional guidance.
photo by kristen kilpatrick
Detoxify and Give Your System a Break
Having a glass or two of wine with dinner, eating meat with every meal, being too lazy to wash your face before bed… these are all things that, over time, fill our body with toxins and put stress on systems. Try to eat more plant-based foods to give your digestive system a break every now and then, go a week or two without drinking to give your kidneys and liver time and space to detox, and get your lymphatic system pumping out toxins sitting dormant throughout your body.
Dry brushing is an amazing way to move toxins throughout the body. It stimulates your lymphatic system, and reduces inflammation in the process. This is one of my favorite daily habits (along with jade rolling!) and when I am consistent I also notice smoother, more even skin, and better energy overall.