If you are unsure, a wellness plan is a schedule that you design for yourself to achieve personal wellness. This includes all areas of life — mental, physical, spiritual, intellectual, social, financial, environmental and occupational — basically, anything you do, need or want in your life.
But, how to make a wellness plan? Well, we are going to explain exactly how to do this — specifically, how to make one for winter.
How to Make a Wellness Plan for Winter
If you have SAD (seasonal affective disorder) making a wellness plan will ensure you continue living a healthy lifestyle throughout the toughest months. Even if you don't struggle with this condition, staying happy and well during winter is still a must!
First of all, you will need to figure out any areas that you think could use improvement. Once you have deciphered the areas, rank them from one to ten, bearing in mind one is the poorest rank you can give. You'll then be able to see exactly which parts you need to focus on to improve your overall wellbeing, health and happiness.
Next, set your goals that will increase the satisfaction of your identified areas. Ensure you write down both short and long term goals and that all of these are realistic, doable and reasonable.
Finally, to know how well you are doing, you will need to keep some sort of diary or ongoing chart so you can track your progress. Aside from this planned time for checking in with everything, ask yourself regular questions like 'am I feeling happier?' or 'do I have more energy?' etc so you can ensure your selected goals are working for you.
Don't forget that you will need to update your wellness plan at some point throughout the season as you start to grow and change into your brilliant new self.
Why a Healthy Diet is Important for Wellness
Within your wellness plan, you will want to make sure you incorporate nutritious food. The importance of a healthy diet for wellness is unbelievable, you can't live a truly satisfying and wonderful life if you don't think about your diet.
A balanced diet will ensure many aspects of your physical self will be kept healthy and high-functioning. Eating properly will decrease the risk of heart disease and diabetes but, your overall health will increase massively too. Not to mention your sleep cycle and energy levels will be in harmony!
Nutritious foods will also enhance your mental health (another essential part of your wellness plan). Eating fruits and vegetables have been proven to reduce the risk of depression and anxiety. Your mood will be positively affected too, as well as your concentration.
Include Exercise for Mental and Physical Wellbeing
Of course, the physical wellbeing that comes from exercise is pretty obvious — you'll become stronger, your heart and cardiovascular health will be improved and you will lose fat, among other benefits too.
However, the benefits of exercise for mental health and wellbeing are less known and valued, but they definitely should be!
Taking part in physical activity is a sure-fire way to boost your mood and feel a lot more content, calmer and overall happier — even if you start in a low mood!
Moving our bodies also has an impact on your stress levels — don't worry, it is a positive one! You will notice a decreased sense of stress after just 10 to 20 minutes of some form of exercise.
Self-esteem — how worthy we think we are and how we feel about ourselves — is also positively affected by physical activity.
Meditation and Mental Wellbeing
Within your wellness plan, you should think about including meditation for health and wellbeing. Why? Well, let us dive in, shall we?
As we are sure you know, high levels of stress are a major problem when it comes to trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle but, thankfully, meditation can help beat the unbearable stressors that work, social media and fast-paced, busy lives can provide.
Meditation and mindful practices also help to treat the symptoms of hypertension, insomnia, gastrointestinal problems, cardiovascular disease and anxiety disorders.
While participating in meditation practices, the goal should simply be to find a tranquil, calm place within yourself and to let go of any external factors that are causing you to worry or stress.
If you are unsure of where to start, there are four types of this 'exercise' that are commonly used: seated position (cross-legged on the ground), focus (on something, e.g. candle, breath), walking (focus on your breathing while you walk) and yoga Nidra (lying on the floor, listening to guided meditation). A quick Google search will lead you to in-depth tutorials of each of these methods.
As long as you know yourself, your winter wellness plan should work wonderfully to have you feeling happy, satisfied and content throughout what can be a difficult season for many!