June is Men’s Health Month, making this the optimal time to take control of your health! While it can be easy to fall into unhealthy routines and patterns, it’s important to take time out of your busy schedule to focus on yourself and your overall wellness. Below are some important tips to not only make the most out of this month but to put yourself in the best health possible moving forward.
Preserve Your Physical Health
While you might already be taking steps to put your physical health first, Men’s Health Month is the best time to take a deep dive into your habits and evaluate if any changes should be made. One way to maintain your physical health is to plan activities together with friends and family. Summer is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy activities like golf, basketball, or volleyball. By integrating regular exercise into your daily routine, it’s possible to help prevent or lessen the risk of some health conditions like colon cancer or high blood pressure.
Likewise, if you are a smoker or heavy drinker, now is the time to consider cutting back or stopping altogether. Smoking can lead to certain cancers, stroke, and heart disease. Excessive drinking can also lead to certain types of cancers, liver disease, and high blood pressure. By taking control of these habits now, you are setting yourself up for a longer, healthier life going forward.
As you might already know, eating right is one of the key pillars to staying physically healthy. While this is true, it’s also important to understand what kind of foods you are putting into your body. Nutrient-rich foods like bananas, avocados, and nuts can provide you the energy needed to get you through your day without the need for multiple cups of coffee or energy drinks. Furthermore, ensuring that you are eating enough vegetables and fruits provides your body with important vitamins and minerals that contribute to keeping your heart healthy.
Be Mindful of Mental Health
A critical part of men’s health that often either overlooked or stigmatized is mental health. According to a study by the American Psychological Association, 30.6% of men have suffered from depression at some point in their life, and on average, only 1 in 4 men actually took measures to speak to a mental health professional. While discussing emotions and feelings are often said to be “unmanly” ways of dealing with certain difficulties, this is a healthy way of managing the trials and tribulations of everyday life and struggles.
While speaking to a mental health professional is a direct way to work out any troubles you may be facing, this is also a great time to normalize talking about how you feel with your male friends and family if you are unsure of seeking professional guidance. Even a small check-in can do wonders for your mental health, which can help reduce overall stress.
If verbally opening up is not something that comes naturally to you, you can try journaling to express your feelings. Journaling can also reduce stress and can manage any anxiety you might be feeling. This can also help prioritize problems or any concerns within your day-to-day dealings that you might be facing. Furthermore, this gives you a chance to identify any negative thoughts you might have and can provide a space for positive reflection.
Focus on Financial Health
While taking steps to put your overall well-being in a good position, it’s just as important to focus on your financial wellbeing. This kind of health can easily be overlooked but can make a big impact on how you live your life. Having poor financial health can increase stress and heart problems, but can also create anxiety and sleepless nights. One way to improve your financial health is to check your credit score and make any improvements if necessary.
Your credit score informs lenders how likely you are to pay back a loan (like a mortgage or auto loan) based on your prior history. Factors that go into this score are low balances on credit cards, a mix of different loan types, and a history of on-time payments. If you are finding that your credit score isn’t where you want it to be, you can take steps to make improvements over time. These include consolidating your debts, limiting your requests for new credit, and keeping your credit card balance at 30% or less.
Another way to take control of this type of health is to consider your legacy. If you have dependents like a spouse or children, take some time to consider how they will be taken care of in the event of your passing. While you may have a life insurance policy through your employer, it might not be enough to fully provide for your family.
Choosing a supplemental life insurance policy now can be beneficial, as rates are typically lower when you are young and healthy. A payout from this policy can be used to replace lost income, which makes paying for obligations such as a mortgage, funeral, or other expenses less of a financial burden. As the year 2020 taught us, life can be unpredictable, which is why taking steps now to protect your family later is so important.
While the above tips are just some of the ways to prioritize your health, remember that your health and wellbeing are something to be cherished for the whole year. Taking these steps now will only benefit you going forward, giving you the opportunity to live your fullest life.