Fitness By Mike Sireci Share 0 Tweet Pin 0 Share 0 Balanced living means having a positive outlook, focusing on good habits, and lowering stress.Everyone longs to be healthy and happy. After all, what’s the point in working hard toward a long and healthy life if you can’t enjoy it? While focusing on a healthy lifestyle by exercising and eating right is great for your body, balanced living means protecting your mental and emotional health, too. And stress reduction needs to be at the top of your to-do list.Balanced living means considering all aspects of your life: relationships, work, fitness and health, and emotional well-being.We all get bogged down with work and family responsibilities from time to time, but making time for yourself is necessary so that you can keep up with all your responsibilities. All batteries get run down, even yours. So recharge your body physically and mentally and make the commitment to enjoy some “you time” every day.Keep fitThere is nothing that will do more good for you in terms of being vibrantly healthy, energetic, and youthful than a regular fitness program. Develop a well-rounded program that includes strength training, aerobics, and stretching. Make this program a top priority in your life and stay committed to it. Rest and sleep, pure water, clean fresh air, healthy amounts of sunshine, and fresh wholesome foods are all essential ingredients to vibrant health. Try to select foods as close to the way nature produced them as possible. A whole-food, plant-based diet has been shown to be the best for radiant health and youthful vitality. Only when you approach health and fitness from a holistic perspective can you expect to achieve optimal well-being.RelaxStress comes from many sources and taxes our nervous systems. Excessive environmental stimulation — noise, traffic, and especially commercial advertising — causes stress. Unexpressed negative feelings are stressors, too. They feed on themselves — anger can turn against the self and emerge as depression or severe anxiety. People who do not express feelings get sick more often, stay sick longer, and die sooner than expressive people. Becoming deeply relaxed in mind and body is something for which we must work. Learn deep relaxation techniques, such as meditation, visualization, yoga, stretching, and breathing exercises, so that your stress levels will be under control.Simplify lifeFind joy in simple pleasures. Breathe deeply, smell the flowers, talk to the animals, spend time with a horse, sing with the birds, be with friends, greet the sun, scratch behind your dog’s or kitty’s ear, and make someone smile. Marvel at the miracle you are, tell someone you love them, and laugh out loud—often! A healthy degree of emotional detachment and hearty laughter can stimulate the immune system. Don’t take yourself and life so seriously. Laugh and smile more and play at this game of life. Laughter is one of the best ways to quell stress; it’s an elixir for the soul. A sense of humor allows you to see through a mist of confusion to the celebration of life.