Practice Self-love this Valentine’s Day

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

By: Ashmar Mandou

What better holiday than Valentine’s Day to focus on showing a little self-love and compassion for your busy, hardworking self? Aside from the notable chocolate and champagne, there are other ways to practice self-love on Valentine’s Day.

Commit to sleep. If you aren’t regularly getting 7.5 hours a night of zzzzzzzs, this may be the number one thing you can do to improve your energy, clarity, pleasant personality, and to control your appetite. Did you know that one study found getting less than six hours of sleep each night to be one of the most powerful predictors of on-the-job-burnout? If you can’t get your sleep all at once, don’t downplay the power of a good nap. Research shows that naps can improve performance, vigilance, and even memory.

Be open to receiving. Sometimes having a great day or being on the receiving end of a ton of goodness can be as simple as being open to it. And you might be surprised how many tough cookies are better at giving than receiving. Today, be open Valentine. Let the compliment land and don’t deflect the kind words or minimize your accomplishments. Let them in and allow them to warm your heart. Put your hand on your heart right now and repeat after me— “Today, I see the good aimed at me, I feel the good, I receive the good.” Don’t forget to make eye contact.

Break a sweat. Engage in regular cardiovascular exercise that elevates your heart rate and increases blood flow to the brain and body. Several studies have found an association between physical activity and reduced risk of cognitive decline.

Fuel up right. Eat a healthy and balanced diet that is lower in fat and higher in vegetables and fruit to help reduce the risk of cognitive decline. Although research on diet and cognitive function is limited, certain diets, including Mediterranean and Mediterranean-DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension), may contribute to risk reduction.

Take care of your mental health. Some studies link a history of depression with increased risk of cognitive decline, so seek medical treatment if you have symptoms of depression, anxiety or other mental health concerns. Also, try to manage stress.

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