07 Jun A sprinkle of variety to boost your resilience
A multidimensional life can help support your resilience and protect you from being knocked back by adversity.
Have you noticed how a sprinkle of seasoning can make a huge difference to a meal?
Or how trying something new or different can be exciting or energising?
Adding a sprinkle of variety to the boring or mundane can support our mental health and also help us find “flow” – the key is to find the right balance.
Just as too much variety makes life stressful and unpredictable, too little variety can cause us to miss out on opportunities, creativity, and real health benefits.
If you find yourself feeling bored, languishing, unmotivated or stagnant, consider whether there might be an opportunity to “sprinkle” some variety – can you try doing things a different way, can you find a new way to do an old thing, can you gamify it or turn it into ‘play’?
Here are some practical ideas for embracing variety and diversity to help support your resilience
Mix up your wardrobe:
The colours you wear can directly impact your mood and emotions. Take note of how you feel when you wear a particular colour, and try to have a range of colours in your wardrobe so you can benefit from the advantages that each colour offers. For example, greens and blues can help you feel calm. Red can bring out strong emotions like love and passion, orange can bring energy and enthusiasm, yellow can bring warmth and brightness, pink can bring kindness and nurturing. Experiment with different colours to find what best supports your mood and emotions.
Eat a rainbow:
Eating a wide variety of plant-based foods helps you get the full spectrum of vitamins, minerals and nutrients to support a healthy brain and body. Increasing the variety of microbes in your gut through eating a diverse range of foods can strengthen your body’s immune system and reduce inflammation . Our bodies are designed to get nutrients from food, not a pill, so aim to eat at least 30 different plant species every week for optimum gut health. Get creative, be adventurous, and find new ways to add some variety to your meals!
Take a different route:
Whether you’re walking, driving, or running, why not take a different route for a change. The change in scenery can be refreshing and stimulating, and stop you from getting bored or defaulting to auto-pilot. You might even discover something new or interesting!
Move your body:
Moving your body in different ways helps to keep your body stimulated and healthy. While brisk walking or running can be great for cardiovascular health, also consider the physical benefits of stretching for muscle tone and flexibility, and weight training for stronger bones and muscles. Want to try something different? Balancing exercises are great for building stability which becomes ever more important as we age and lose proprioception (knowing where a body part is in space at any one time.),
What other ideas have YOU got for adding variety to your life?