Working life can be challenging at times. Many of us are time poor and juggling many things. It can be hard to find time for yourself and your well-being. Does that sound like you?
Are you one of the many executives reporting that they are stressed? Keeping yourself in the “Stress Response Zone” for extended periods of time can make you vulnerable to illnesses like heart disease. It is essential that you care for your wellness and heart health as much as you are taking care of your business and career.
A recent study in the U.S by the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that people who work for 55 hours a week are 16% more likely to be diagnosed with heart diseases. The study also reported that people who work for 70 hours a week are almost 75% more vulnerable to heart sickness.
If we reflect on these statistics, we can clearly see that prioritising your heart health is becoming increasingly important, especially for those folks who tend to work long hours.
Here are 4 simple ways to look after your heart whilst being focussed on work:
1.Maintain some daily movement
Engaging in daily movement is essential for your heart’s health and light exercise such as walking and stretching are some of the most natural ways to stay healthy. Physical activity keeps blood pressure in check, it can mitigate the risks of obesity helps in the reduction of bad cholesterol and can enhance insulin sensitivity in the body.
Mood boosting brain chemicals called endorphins are released with movement helping to increase happiness, decrease anxiety and depression.
Movement increases the amount of oxygen and nutrients that get delivered throughout the body. This is great for your heart and lungs which makes them more efficient and increases your energy levels.
Your immune system gets a boost with movement, you can burn excess calories helping you maintain a healthy weight. I have personally found that physical exercise also helps me fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
2. Introduce Mindfulness Meditation into your daily routine
Being able to focus, be present, have better interactions, stress reduction, avoiding burnout and learning how to establish work-life balance are key objectives of many executives.
Recent research in neuroscience and mindfulness, demonstrates conclusively that mindfulness practice leads to:
- Improved heart rate variability .This is simply a measure of the variation in time between each heartbeat
- Improved, clarity and concentration.
- Increased capacity to adapt to change and respond to challenges.
- Emotional and physical resilience
- Improved immune function.
- Energy and vitality
- Greater ability to relax.
- Better quality sleep
- Increased job satisfaction and less absenteeism
To get you started with Mindfulness here is a link to my Heart Meditation. Just 10 mins per day can make a huge difference.
3. Eat well
You’re eating habits play a significant role in determining your wellness. Eating nutritious and healthy food will go a long way in keeping your heart healthy. Seek some professional advice on this.
4. Make time for some fun
Leisure and recreational activities are key to helping you manage stress and productivity, while simultaneously enhancing your happiness. Feeling happy and reducing stress are crucial to a healthy heart.
Remember, your biggest asset in life is your health and you simply cannot be of service to others if you do not take care of yourself. When you feel good about your health, your work will reflect that. Make sure you are taking time out to enhance health and wellbeing.
Look after your heart, and your heart will take care of the rest.
For more information on my wellness workshops and private mindfulness coaching sessions visit my website