When we think about lessening our ‘bad habits’ and getting fit or healthy (preferably both), it’s important to think about what those habits bring us. It might be that you find some comfort in having a few drinks on a Friday night, but if you notice that you want to drink during each night and find yourself waking up feeling terrible each morning, that habit has a net negative to you. It might also be that your Doctor has convinced you to drink less or cut it out entirely, and so bad habits, as it seems, can be more than just indulgences but have dangerous life effects.
Thankfully, while we should take the time to cut out clear bad habits such as this, being healthy doesn’t necessarily mean you have to live an ascetic lifestyle. There’s such a thing as a good indulgence, which when enjoyed in moderation can help you undo the need for willpower in cutting out old bad habits, because you’ll be having such a good time instead.
In this post, we’ll discuss how that can be, where to begin, and why you should get started. Without further ado, let’s begin:
You Can Still Eat Great Food
Actually, that’s a lie. You’ll eat better food when you’re eating healthy. This is because ‘healthy’ food isn’t only comprised of salads and denying yourself all the meals that look and taste good. Believe it or not, great food authentically sourced, and properly good with wholesome ingredients IS healthy, provided you watch what you eat and don’t overindulge.
For instance, the best Japanese bistro can provide you with unbelievable flavors, with beef, seafood and incredible sushi acting as its most popular offerings. Sitting with your family and watching the true craft in a Teppanyaki bar can be unlike anything else, and you’ll be able to eat beautiful marbled and properly sourced meats and vegetables that taste incredible while still remaining naturally sourced and healthy.
Anyone who thinks they can’t eat tasty food when eating healthily simply hasn’t tried enough food. Compared to that, sloppy cheeseburgers, deep fried goods and sugary snacks hold little water, and are often less than satiating. With this choice, you will not only be making a direct positive impact on your health, but telling yourself that you’re worth being looked after.
Relieving Your Stress Can Be Natural
Many people think that relieving stress needs to be accompanied by a vice, such as drinking alcohol to relax in the evenings, or eating ice cream, or laying on the sofa all night.
But you can relax and bust your stress without necessarily having to lay in bed for four hours. For instance, heading to a spa and having your body massaged and the kinks ironed out of your muscles can be truly helpful.
Walking in nature can help alleviate your stress while also giving you the means to get out and explore the world, contributing to fun exercise, and helping you stretch the legs of your dog. Stress-busting might simply mean stretching a little and laying down to watch an informative documentary. It turns out that ‘active’ relaxation is almost always more nourishing than indulgent relaxation, but you don’t have to feel bad about enjoying either within limits. However, the real secret of relaxation is that it doesn’t really come so easily unless you’ve worked hard. This countering force can be tremendously helpful in helping you alleviate your troubles.
Healthy Substitutes Exist
There are many healthy substitutes worth keeping in mind compared to your usual vices. For instance, if hoping to quit smoking, then you may find that switching for a more natural vape option, at least for now, can help you cut back and cut out.
The same goes for drinking alcohol. Instead of pounding the beers with a friend, why not opt for a nicer, smoother spirit but less of it, savoring the taste and thus enjoying the experience more than just feeling drunk and crawling into bed. For those looking to live healthier, perhaps due to age or in order to curate their energy during the week, this can be a wonderful first step.
Consider Yourself Free
Many people can think that if they ‘go without’ an indulgence, like a sloppy cheeseburger that they tend to eat four times a week at lunch, then they’re actually missing out on something worthwhile. This way, you feel chained to something that isn’t actually that great for you and that can leave you feeling awful.
But you don’t have to bother with that cycle of push and pull. The next time you go shopping, try and head to the butcher and bring back some beef patties, or opt for a premier vegan option. Try and make your own using a new method, such as smashing them down and adding better cheese. Perhaps mix your own steak, chuck, and brisket to create your own patty. See that with this extra effort, you’ll know exactly what has gone into your burger, and you’ll feel amazing eating it.
There’s nothing wrong with a quick burger from time to time. Buf if you feel chained to bad habits, as in this particular example, showing yourself just how good things can be can help you feel free from them to the point where you realize you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Chart Your Progress & Incentives
It can be healthy to use stat trackers to show you just how easy giving up indulgences can be. For instance, a smartphone app that tracks the number of days since you last indulged in something can be applied to help you count how long it’s been. Then, when you forget about that and come across the app later, you’ll see just how much money you might have saved and how many days you’ve been free from it.
This could be as simple as counting the number of days since you ordered takeout food since you want to cook from home and attend wholesome restaurants. It’s up to you what you track. But having the incentive there can help you trade a hollow indulgence for a sense of real accomplishment and saving.
With this advice, you’ll see how being healthy doesn’t necessarily mean giving up indulgences.