Developing the Right Lifestyle Equation


By Lisa Camerlengo

 Creating balance amid a super-busy schedule is no easy task. When you’re over-booked and neglect your own health, fitness and well-being in favor of committing time to activities for others, the one who suffers is you.

Takeyah Young, lifestyle expert, health coach, yogi, speaker and founder of Core Connection Lifestyle and the “Take Living Personally” approach, says you can create an optimal health and wellness plan – but it requires commitment and dedication.

Young’s own journey to wellness has led her to more than 16 countries (and counting!), where she’s gained insights on various examples of healthy living. She says the biggest mistake women (especially) make is to disconnect from their core values. Losing sight of who we are and what we want happens when we try to conform to others’ belief systems. This, in turn, can manifest itself in unhealthy eating habits as a means of maintaining a level of control.

To “Take Living Personally,” Young says it’s important to:

Honor who you are and align your goals with realistic actions. – Don’t expect to lose weight and become healthy overnight. Decide what’s important to you and take small steps to achieving your goals, whether it means taking a 20-minute walk around the block, keeping a food log to track your eating habits or reaching for an apple instead of a candy bar for a snack.

Shift your perspective toward physical activity and movement. – If you want to lose weight, you have to put your body (and mind) into motion. Find an activity you like, invite creativity into your exercise plan and have fun! If you find you’ve become accustomed to a certain type of workout, shake things up a bit and try something new. By giving your body a “surprise,” you can get back on track.

Be accountable; become the change you want to see in yourself.  – There is no “magic pill” for weight loss and diets often don’t work because they are only temporary. Each person is unique and it’s up to you to figure out what works for your body and how to keep yourself motivated.

Cook more and eat healthier. – It may sound like a “no brainer,” but shifting your eating habits can have a dramatic impact on your life. Young points to the experience of a coaching client, who was told she needed knee surgery to address constant pain in her leg. Within one week of eliminating artificial sweeteners from her diet and, instead, eating more natural and green foods, the client’s knee issues disappeared and she was able to cancel the surgery.

Make yourself a priority. – No one is as invested in you as you are. If you put yourself last, other people will too. Assess what you enjoy doing and what you don’t. Can you delegate the tasks you like least? Dedicating just 15 minutes a week for “self-care” to meditate on what’s going on in your life and what makes you happy can make a big difference in how you feel.

By taking a more personal approach to living – paying attention to your body and what it needs – you can achieve balance. After all, Young says, if you aren’t living your own life, what kind of life are you living?

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