A little bit of movement goes a long way
Moving for at least 20-minutes a day is essential to our overall well being. This small act of exercise can improve our sleep, physical body, mood, and mental health.
Movement releases endorphins in our bodies and helps relieve day to day stress. It is very easy to get distracted and overwhelmed from life’s challenges and never-ending responsibilities. A great coping skill for this is to schedule time to move, which allows us to take a break from our everyday routine and move emotions that may be stagnant throughout the body.
There isn’t always time to sneak in a gym session each day, but here are a few tips and tricks to use to add more movement to your daily routine to improve your mental health.
- Stretch for 5 minutes as soon as you get out of bed. This is a great way to start your morning with some caffeine-free energy.
- Do squats / calf raises while waiting for your coffee to brew. It usually takes about 2 minutes to make your coffee, why not utilize this time to be active?
- Add 5-10 minutes of yoga to your morning routine. My favorite yogis to watch on YouTube are: Yoga with Bird and Yoga with Adriene
Throughout the Day
- Park farther away in parking lots. Next time you’re making your Target run, try parking further than usual to get some extra steps in.
- Take phone calls while standing or walking
- Take the stairs: Skip the escalators and elevators
- Move while cooking
- Have a 5 minutes dance party / freeze dance with your little ones
- Add 5-10 minutes of yoga to your nighttime routine. Bedtime yoga is also a popular exercise on YouTube
Los Angeles native, Stephanie Anyakwo received her undergraduate degree at Loyola Marymount University, majoring in Psychology and African American Studies. She continued her education at Azusa Pacific University where she received her Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology, with a concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy. Additionally, she studied Applied Behavior Analysis at Florida Institute of Technology, becoming a Board Certified Behavior Analyst in 2014 and became a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in 2016.