This post by Natasha Bhalla has been shared from Salon professionals, listen up — YOU have the power to boost your health and feel great all day, even while at the salon! We all have so much on our plates these days, but with a few adjustments and some awareness, you can take charge of your health and wellness. It’s important to pay attention to your body and spirit needs to succeed both inside the salon and outside of it. As beauty professionals, you’re constantly giving to others and unless your own cup is full, you will eventually feel depleted and exhausted. Furthermore, illness can be invited into your life when you’re not taking care of yourself properly. Ready to stop the burn out? Incorporate the following tips into your daily routine so you feel more energetic, peaceful and healthy each day.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate

Drinking water throughout the day is essential to keeping energy levels up. Water flushes toxins from the system and helps you remain alert. Even slight dehydration can reduce focus and concentration, increasing the risk for mistakes and accidents. And, making a mistake during a client cut is the last thing anyone wants! Our bodies are made up of approximately 60 percent water and consistently replenishing this water throughout the day prevents fatigue, headaches and lethargy. Furthermore, if you drink coffee or other caffeinated beverages throughout the day, it’s important to drink water to counteract the dehydrating effects of caffeine. Drinking water is also good for your skin, as it hydrates cells and softens lines. It also aids in weight loss! Aim to drink at least half your body weight in water each day.

Break during break time

Breaks exist for a reason – to allow you to pause, recollect and rejuvenate. Repetitive hand and arm movements caused by working on clients during the day can stiffen muscles and cause fatigue. Standing all day long can cause fatigue in the hips, legs and feet. During your breaks, take a few minutes to stretch, both your upper and lower body. Stretching relieves tightness and brings oxygen to the muscles. If possible, during your break, take a quick walk outside to get some fresh air and get the blood pumping, which will encourage you feel alive and energetic. Try to disconnect from everything going on at the salon during this time to give yourself a respite.

Brown bag it

While it’s easier to order lunch in (or even dinner for salons that are open late), bringing in food from home is much better for your body – and your wallet! When you order out, you have no control over what is put into your food and how it’s cooked. You may think you’re ordering a healthy dish of veggies, but the veggies may have been sautéed in an unhealthy oil or butter. When you cook your food yourself and bring it in to eat, you are in complete control over how it’s cooked and what’s in it. Do your body a huge favor and cook more and eat out less.

Move it

We all know that exercise is imperative to maintaining health and wellness. Although you’ve got a busy schedule, incorporating exercise into your daily routine is doable with some planning. Waking up just half an hour earlier can allow you to get in a nice morning walk or other cardio exercise. You can even incorporate exercise into your day at the salon – and, make it a group thing! Consult with your team and plan three to four times during the day during which you will all stop for just three minutes to do 15 squats, toe touches or standing ab crunches. Your clients will be entertained and may even join in! Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box to get exercise in throughout the day.

Snack wisely

Most salons keep a candy bowl at the reception desk which can compromise the staff’s healthy eating objectives. Instead of candy, keep fruit in the bowl. Apples, oranges and bananas are easy to grab and eat. If fruit isn’t kept around the salon, you may want to bring some in for healthy snacking throughout the day. Almonds, walnuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds are also great snacks to have on hand that will fill you up while also boosting your immune system. If you get granola bars, just be sure they are not full of sugar, which is sometimes labeled as corn syrup, cane sugar, dextrose, or evaporated cane juice (among other names).

Peace out

Quiet and solitude are important to feel grounded and aligned in your life. Without this quiet time, you can easily feel harried, anxious and disheveled. Devoting just 15 minutes a day to a meditation practice, praying or sitting quietly can significantly improve your outlook, attitude and well-being. Centering yourself daily lowers your blood pressure, reduces your heart rate, and calms the mind. It also grounds you, helping you keep things in perspective, and wards off depression and anxiety. All you need is 15-20 minutes a day of peace and quiet to acquire the many benefits meditation can offer. In 2018, busy schedules must no longer be a deterrent to taking care of your health. With some adjustments and planning, you can add healthful habits to your daily routine, including eating nourishing food, exercising and taking steps to reduce stress through quiet moments. Take small steps each day to improve your health and wellness, and by December, you’ll find yourself in a happier, healthier place.