What do our mind and body have in common with a car?
How to look after your mind & body
Like a car, your mind and body need good care and maintenance to keep it running well. As we drive our way through life, it’s important to keep an eye on our dashboard: our mental health, physical health and our wellbeing.
- Look after the engine
A car’s engine needs regular maintenance to keep it in good running order and working properly. Our bodies do too. Self-care is all about how we look after our greatest assets - our mind (mental health) and body (physical health). It helps us stay focused, feel happier and often lends itself to a better work-life balance.
Self-care is different for everyone, but is something we should all make time for regularly to help keep us functioning at our best - find out more here.
- Don't let yourself get worn out
It’s important not to let your car tyres or brake pads get worn out, the same is true for people! One of the essential things we need to do is sleep well. Aim to get around 7+ hours of sleep each night and give yourself time to relax because this can make a huge difference to your overall health and wellbeing.
Aim to get around 8 hours of sleep each night and give yourself time to relax because this can make a huge difference to your mental health and wellbeing. Find more sleep tips here, including tips for shift workers too!
- Top up your fluids
Checking your car’s water level is important, just like your own. It’s recommended that men should typically drink 2 litres a day (around 8 cups) and women should drink 1.5 litres (around 6 cups).
However, this can depend on your health, age, size and weight as well as your activity levels, the type of job you do and the climate. Drinking little and often is the best way to stay hydrated - find more tips here, including food that can boost hydration too.
- Keep yourself running smoothly
Cars often have trouble starting, or don’t run smoothly, when they haven’t been used for a long time. Our bodies are no different - we should all exercise regularly to keep us on top form. Adults should aim to do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity, or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity each week. This should be spread evenly over 4 - 5 days a week, or ideally every day. You can keep your joints ‘well-oiled’ by taking regular exercise.
If you work at a desk, try to stand up every hour and move around for 5-10 minutes. This can be an excuse for nipping to the kitchen to grab some more water or going to speak to a colleague rather than using email. Increasing your physical activity not only helps you to stay fit, strong and healthy but is also a great way to relieve tension and improve your mental wellbeing. Find cheap ways to get fit here.
- Petrol, Diesel or BEV
We all know the damaging effects of putting the wrong fuel in a car – the same goes for our bodies. There is a strong link between nutrition (what we eat) and our health & wellbeing. Eating a balanced diet is important as it plays a big part in looking after our overall health, giving us the best chance of staying well, feeling good and being at our best.
Recent research has shown that ideally, we should be aiming to eat 7-10 portions of fruit and veg each day. An adult portion of fruit or vegetables is 80g, that’s roughly 7 strawberries or 2 broccoli spears. Find more nutrition tips here, including how to eat well on a budget and the best food to fuel sports performance too.
- Check your blind spot
We check our mirrors regularly to ensure we don’t miss anything unexpected. We should also check our eyesight regularly too, not just to keep us safe on the roads, but for everyday life. For most of us, it’s recommended that you get your eyes checked every 2 years.
Regular eye tests can help uncover any issues with your sight or eyes before they become too serious. If you have any concerns about your eyes/vision and you’re not due an eye test contact your optician, and they’ll be able to advise you.
- Regular check-ups required
Just as a car needs a regular check-up, so does your mind and body. It’s important to regularly check your dashboard: your mental health, physical health and your wellbeing. If you spot a warning sign, talk about it and get help.
By keeping an eye on all aspects of our health we ensure we’re happy and healthy for now, and better prepared for whatever life may through our way.
We all need a bit of extra support sometimes to help us get over those bumps in the road. Looking after our health and wellbeing is not only good for us now, it can also help us deal with and manage difficult times in the future.
Whether you have a modern dragster or a vintage model, these tips can help your mind and body keep ticking over as you increase your mileage.
If you’re struggling, get in touch. Call us free on 08081 311 333 or chat with us online. You don’t have to do this alone - we've got your back. Find out how we can help here.
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