February is the month of love…
Love for yourself, love for your neighbor, love for your partner, you name it, we’re lovin’ it this month! February is also American Heart month. So we’ve decided to help you get healthy physically in body, but also in spirit with our pro tips on having a healthy heart.
Having a healthy heart physically:
It can feel like a lot of work at times, but maintaining a healthy heart is what keeps you alive, keeps your blood pumping, and keeps everything in working order within the body.
Most individuals don’t think about their heart having any sort of problems until it’s too late (i.e. heart attack). However, there are quite a few simple things you can incorporate into your day to day, in order to reduce stress on your heart physically:
- Keep it pumping! – that’s right – EXERCISE. When your heart slows down too much, too often, it starts to feel like it doesn’t work properly. So keep your body moving, and your heart pumping regularly in order to keep the heart muscle healthy and strong. If you don’t use it, you lose it.
Just 20 minutes per day is enough to give you the recommended amount of weekly exercise needed to maintain a healthy heart. I’m just we can all give up 20 minutes of our day for some intensive movement, considering we probably all spend about 3 hrs or more on our phones daily.
- Eat Smart – Adding a variety of heart-healthy foods to your diet daily is a great way to prevent heart disease. Some healthy foods to add into your daily diet include: leafy green vegetables, berries, avocados, fatty fish and fish oils, nuts like almonds and walnuts, garlic, and green tea.
There are many more out there, but this is a good start to get your gears turning. Eating smart is not so much about what you eliminate, but instead what you can add in to make your diet feel more whole.
Having an Emotionally and Spiritually healthy heart:
Having a healthy heart physically is wonderful, but there’s more to it than just that. Having a healthy heart emotionally and spiritually allows us to create space for the things that matter in our lives. When our hearts are beating in that steady rhythm of grace and love, we often find there is a lot less to stress over.
So how do we cultivate a healthy heart emotionally and spiritually? It’s complicated and simple all at the same time:
- Authentically express yourself. Don’t harbor bitter feelings. Authentically expressing yourself does not have to be aggressive, and it does not have to be savage. Authentically expressing yourself releases negative emotions, and create space in your heart for what serves you in the most healthy way possible.
- Do the things that set your soul on fire. What brings your heart joy? What makes you feel most alive? If it’s walking, go on a walk. If it’s deep conversations with friends – do it. If it’s adventure, go on an adventure. Remember, there is always time for these things. We act as if there is not, but maybe we act this way because we don’t prioritize the things that really bring us joy.
- Make room for growth. When we limit our heart’s potential to expand, we limit our heart’s potential feel at peace. Allowing room, allowing growth, all allows us the opportunity to feel at peace because we no longer feel limited by our expectations or limited by specific goals.
- Check in with yourself. Having a healthy heart emotionally and spiritually requires us to check in on the things that might be creating dissonance within us. These checks should happen frequently, and with intentional care. Acknowledging where you’re at gives your heart a fighting chance to make healthier decisions, cultivate balance, as well as get rid of the things that cause depletion for you emotionally/spiritually.
As Carl Jung says:
Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside awakes.
This Valentine’s, be sure to give yourself a little heart check. Physically and emotionally. Check your pulse. Are you really living? Use some of these tips to cultivate that healthy heart you’ve been looking for. We’d love to know if these help you, or if you have any other healthy heart tips of your own to share! Be sure to comment below or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Made Well Center Team