Why wellness matters if you want a successful career

Whether they’re top business executives or Hollywood movie stars, living healthy is an important way successful professionals maintain a balanced lifestyle, stay sharp, deal with stress and and keep themselves strong. There are many reasons why wellness is important to your career, and if you learn how to keep your body and mind healthy as a young professional, you’ll be better prepared to manage your personal wellness as you grow older and encounter more and more constraints on your time.

 

The mental and psychological effects of exercise

One of the major threats to our health and well-being as professionals is stress. It can take a toll both on your mental and physical health, causing fatigue, headaches, stomach problems, irritability, trouble sleeping, sadness and lack of focus. Stress is an inevitable part of having a demanding job. However, exercising regularly can have a significant positive effect on how we deal with stress. For one, aerobic exercise causes us to produce mood-elevating endorphins, which lessens anxiety and improves sleep. Exercise is also a kind of meditation, which can help relieve work-related tension.

 

why wellness is important

 

Finding peace

Meditation is a powerful tool for maintaining mental health and staying sharp at the office. Mindfulness meditation, yoga and other practices have gained significant popularity among young professionals looking to stay healthy, relieve stress and improve focus. Approaching work with greater mental clarity through meditation improves focus, concentration and overall work performance. Meditation also increases our awareness of others, which can help our compassion towards our coworkers and the way we interact and work with colleagues.

 

Eating well

How we eat can have a significant impact on our energy levels, focus and how we deal with stress. Many people foolishly opt for foods that are merely convenient, and save time in the short term, but don’t really fuel you to get the most out of your day. When you need a spike in energy, for example, sugar and coffee often come with a crash afterwards, which leaves you worse off than before. Almonds, greek yogurt, blueberries and whole grains are all going to provide long-lasting, healthy sources of energy. Meanwhile, in stressful situations opt for asparagus, avocado or cashews to help you relax, instead of chips, pizza and other greasy, unhealthy options that will make you feel worse once they’re in your stomach.

 

why wellness is important

 

Now that you know why wellness is important to your career, here are our top tips for living a healthy lifestyle:

-Always eat a healthy breakfast, free from too many processed sugars
-Choose water over sugary drinks like soda and juice
-Make sure to get in at least 150 minutes of aerobic exercise a week
-Walk whenever possible
-Avoid processed sugars and opt for honey or fruits to get your sweet on
-Find an exercise that you genuinely enjoy doing
-Get at least 7 hours of sleep every night

 

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Sources: https://www.theguardian.com/careers/careers-blog/2015/apr/21/mindfulness-meditation-can-boost-your-career-and-help-you-get-a-job, http://mkbconseil.ch/health-affect-success/, http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/expert-answers/exercise/faq-20057916, http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/exercise-and-stress/art-20044469, http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress-symptoms/art-20050987, http://www.pcrm.org/health/health-topics/how-to-eat-right-to-reduce-stress, http://www.businessinsider.com/10-foods-to-boost-energy-2013-9?op=1/#afy-greens-are-full-of-iron-that-improves-concentration-levels-7, http://www.prevention.com/mind-body/emotional-health/13-healthy-foods-that-reduce-stress-and-depression/slide/5

Photo 1. based on 60, by Fit Approach, CC-by-SA 2.0

Photo 2. based on yoga, by Felix E. Guerrero, CC-by-SA 2.0

Photo 3. based on peppers and summer squash, by Samantha Forsberg, CC-by-2.0

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Elizabeth Trovall

After short stints in Argentina and Belize, Elizabeth is finishing up her fourth year in Santiago, Chile. Elizabeth writes about international internships, life abroad and professional development for The Intern Group. She also reports on politics, business and culture in Latin America for public radio and print media. An Austin, Texas native, Elizabeth first left home to earn her journalism degree from the Reynolds Institute of Journalism at the University of Missouri. Besides her friends and family, she misses live music and Mexican food the most.
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