“It’s the thought that counts.”
I don’t know about you but as a child if my parents ever told me they thought about getting me a lot of Christmas presents but decided not to I’d have been signing myself up for adoption. Well, maybe not that far, but I’d have been pissed. Thoughts can only get you so far, eventually you have to execute. Value comes from successful execution, not thinking.
I ordered my first Christmas gift for someone today. I spent ten minutes choosing between two options. I wrote about why I chose the one I did and will include that with the gift. Hopefully the thought will count for something. I spend a lot of energy thinking about the gifts to give people. Probably too much. I use to spend hours thinking on ideas and find something wrong with each one. I’d get frustrated and sometimes just not get them anything.
When trying to figure out what to get everyone else it can be easy to forget about ourselves. That’s why I came up with the follow gift guide for your body. These are some of the things I try to do every day. They will help better you so you can give more! (I’ve even included surprise gifts you can give your body too!)
6-8 hours! Studies show sleep can help fight weight gain, improve decision making, decrease anxiety, sleep refreshes the immune system, stabilize blood sugar, lower risk of disease. It basically does everything. I often think I don’t need that much sleep, that I have stuff I’d rather be doing than sleeping. It never works out though. I end up being bitchier, or tired, or some other problem that kicks my productivity right between the legs. Let’s aim for quality in our waking hours, not quantity.
Surprise your body: Go to bed 15-30 minutes earlier tonight.
8 cups per day! That might sound like a lot to you. It did for me once. My trick now is just to have 2-3 glasses after I drink something else (so if I have a cup of coffee I’ll drink a couples glasses of water before my next drink). Drinking water helps maintain the balance of body fluids, control calories, energizes muscles, keeps skin looking good, water helps your kidneys, maintain normal bowel function. Ok, I’m tired of googling reasons why things are good for you. Just trust me, these things are all good for you. If you don’t believe me try it for yourself then write me if it made you feel shitty.
Surprise your body: Go have a glass of water right now.
It doesn’t have to be intense! Go for a walk, do a minute of jumping jacks, air squats, anything. Something is better than nothing. Ok, I said I wasn’t going to google anymore but this image is awesome:
Surprise your body: stand up, stretch, do two dozen air squats. In an office? Scared people will laugh at you? Get them to do it too! Tell them it’s national work like the Japanese day. Or just go do them in secret in the restroom.
Exercise for the mind. Escape to a new world. Learn something new. Learn from others. There is no shortage of things you can gain from reading. I read the other day that smart people learn from their mistakes and wise people learn from somebody else’s mistakes. Make yourself a little wiser today.
Surprise your body: You’re reading right now!
A kid laughs on average three hundred times per day. An adult? About five. That’s insane! Laughing makes me feel good, I bet it makes you feel good too. Watch a funny movie, read funny jokes. Even better try to make someone else laugh. It doesn’t matter if people are laughing at you or with you, by adding laughter to the world you’re making it a better feeling place.
Surprise your body: I laughed watching this today!
Exit Your Comfort Zone
Do something out of the ordinary. Next time you order coffee ask for 10% off, or a free one for your friend. “Hey, my friend is having a bad day, can she get a free coffee please or some sort of discount?” The worst thing that can happen is they’ll say no but you’d be surprised what some people will do to help others. You’ll make their day more memorable too. Either way, the sun will shine a little brighter.
Surprise your body: Lay down for five minutes in a shopping mall and see what happens. (Disclaimer: I’ve never done this)
Wash away your negativity. Literally. Feel the water against your body, imagine all the negative energy puddling at your feet and being washed down the drain. If that’s too hippy for you, maybe just touch yourself?
Surprise your body: Take a hot shower this evening.
How would you feel if someone constantly told you that you aren’t good enough, aren’t thin enough, aren’t muscular enough, this is wrong with you or that is wrong with you? Probably pretty lousy. So why subject your body to this constant shaming?
Surprise your body: Stand in front of the mirror and say “hey you look good today.” Try to do it every time you look in a mirror.
When I’m feeling shitty if I put an effort into thinking of things I’m grateful for, no matter how trivial, eventually I’ll feel better. It’s magic! What are you grateful for? If you can’t think of anything start with easy ones. Being able to walk? Talk? Touch? Smell? Went to something else on the Internet before reading this far? There is no end to the things your body can do right now. Thank it for that.
Surprise your body: Thank your body for three things right now! Write them down.
Be still. Take a few minutes to just sit, observe your thoughts and let your mind relax. There is some proverb or something that states if you’re too busy to sit and meditate for ten minutes a day then you should sit for twenty. Your mind drives your body. What should you do when you are driving your car on the highway and get tired? Pull over and have a nap. Although rolling down the windows, turning up the music, and singing at the top of my lungs sometimes works for me.
Surprise your body: Close your eyes and think of a snowflake frozen in time. Analyze all of it’s intricacies. I don’t know, I’m getting tired and that’s the best I could come up with! Actually give it a try, I just did. Describing a snowflake is hard.
Hopefully that sparks a few ideas within you. Maybe try one of these things today, maybe another tomorrow. The more you give your body the more it’ll give back to you. As you give yourself more, the more you’ll be capable of giving others.
Remember, the thought doesn’t count for much. Your body doesn’t care if you think about giving it things. You need to execute. It wants the damn presents.