By Peter A. Heslin on
For most of us, 2020 was an exhausting year. The COVID-19 pandemic heralded draining physical health concerns, social isolation, job dislocation, uncertainty about the future and related mental health issues.
Although some of us have enjoyed changes such as less commuting, for many the pandemic added extra punch to the main source of stress – engaging in or searching for work.
Here’s what theory and research tells us about how to feel more rested and alive in 2021.
Recovery activity v experience
Recovery is the process of reversing the adverse impacts of stress. Leading recovery researchers Sabine Sonnentag and Charlotte Fritz have highlighted the important distinction between recovery activities (what you do during leisure time) and...
By Christian Swann on
It’s that time of year when many of us are setting goals for the year ahead. The most common New Year’s resolution – set by 59% of us - is to exercise more.
But our research suggests the way we typically set goals in exercise often doesn’t work. So, what should we do instead?
Our research interviewing elite athletes suggests one possibility is to set open goals instead.
Specific goals can actually put us off
Generally we’re advised to set specific, or SMART, goals (where SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timebound). Aiming to walk 10,000 steps per day is a common example.
This advice is typically based on goal-setting theory from the 1990s. However, that theory has now evolved, with research now suggesting...
By Peter A. Heslin on
Every year most of us make New Year’s resolutions. Eat healthier. Exercise regularly. Invest more in valued relationships. Learn a language. And so on. Often they are the same resolutions as last year.
Why do our resolutions often so swiftly wither away?
A prime culprit in this annual rollercoaster of optimism and disappointment is overconfidence in the power of our intentions.
The excitement of a new year (and perhaps the fruit of celebrating a little too hard) cloud remembering a hard fact of life: good intentions readily evaporate without a trace in the face of everyday experiences such as exhaustion, temptation and long-standing habits.
Fortunately, academic research on goal-setting can help. Studies over several decades have...
By Melissa Ingram on
Many of us set ourselves tasks and goals to achieve what we feel will make a difference to our lives. Sometimes we find it difficult to achieve these goals as the journey becomes too long, too hard or it simply gets overshadowed by other ‘higher priority’ tasks and therefore these goals are pushed to the side.
Start by asking yourself some simple questions that can help you take control of your life and achieve your goals:
- What are you trying to achieve?
- What are your habits and what do you want to change?
- What have you achieved in life?
- Do you live in the moment?
What are trying to achieve and what is your ultimate goal? Is it to live cleanly, train for a 10km fun run, sleep better, lose weight, drink more water, change careers, start a...
By Kai Hensel on
Plenty of us have been there: waking up after a night out with a thumping headache, feeling sick and swearing never to touch alcohol again. If only there were a way to prevent these terrible hangovers.
It isn’t uncommon for us to mix our drinks, maybe a beer in the pub before moving on to wine. Folk wisdom has something to say about this: “Beer before wine and you’ll feel fine; wine before beer and you’ll feel queer.” This idea is very prevalent and versions of it occur in many languages. In my native country, Germany, for example, we say: “Wein auf Bier, das rat’ ich Dir—Bier auf Wein, das lass’ sein.” This translates as: “Wine on beer, I’ll advise you to drink beer on wine.”
But it turns out that there is no truth to these...
By Melissa Ingram on
Every single one of us needs to simply stop and recharge – regularly! Most of us have experienced times where stress is high, deadlines are tight and yet we still seem to be able to move mountains. On the flip side, I can guarantee that all of us have also experienced periods of the same pressure yet feel we are not firing on all cylinders – resulting in lower quality of work being produced or it taking longer to complete.
Allow your body enough time each night to recharge. Start with attempting to get 7 – 8 hours of quality sleep every night. We are all different with regards to the amount of sleep we require to operate optimally, however the average 7 – 8 hours is a great place to start. While we sleep we unplug from our lives and...
By Juice Daily on
Nothing spells a bad day more than spilling coffee on a crisp white shirt come Monday morning, but trivial as it may seem, it can be an instant downer on your mood.
While it’s only natural to get in a funk every now and again – according to a British survey, we have at least 10 grumpy days a year (five hours a week) – it can play an unhealthy part in our overall sense of wellbeing.
The biggest mood booster for women, according to the Healthspan survey is ‘me time.’ So while you can’t out run a bad day, you can shape and mould your routine a little bit each day to care of yourself and make the overall outcome that bit brighter.
Here, scientifically proven tweaks to make life happier.
1. Do exercise you like
With music you like. A...
By Chloe Mcleod on
We all love to indulge in alcohol every now and then, but a night out with friends brings social pressures in regards to frequent drinking. It can feel impossible to dodge having a drink when you want to be part of the group vibe - and before you know it, you’re waking up with a dry mouth and a nasty hangover again.
Dry July is a great way to reassess your relationship with alcohol consumption and see the health benefits of taking a month off. If you’re signing up to raise money, you’ll also be helping people with cancer.
Here are a few ways the human body can benefit from abstaining from alcohol for a whole month.
#1 Improvements to mental health
Alcohol may seem like a mood elevator when you’re dancing and having a great time with your...
By Dry July Foundation on
You’re doing something amazing – improving your own health, and helping to change the lives of people affected by cancer. We're with you every step of the way for your Dry July, so don't be daunted by taking some time off the booze!
Plus, remember that every dollar you raise will help fund projects and programs that improve the comfort and wellbeing of people affected by cancer.
Here are our top tips to help you prepare and stay dry this July:
- In June try to slow down your alcohol intake to half of what you would normally consume.
- Plan your social calendar. Offer to be the Designated Dryver on a night out, or if you have an event that you really want to drink at, ask someone to buy you a Golden Ticket. It will give...