Your health is a complex thing. It touches every aspect of your life, and that means that virtually every part of your lifestyle has some impact on your physical or mental health. That’s certainly true if you live in or around Washington, D.C. — a place that can have a profound effect on its residents’ lifestyles.
In Washington, far too many of us lead stressful and overworked lives. But we have the power to change, and D.C. also has resources that can help us be healthier. Among other things, D.C. is full of superb healthy restaurants and superior physical and mental health professionals. Here’s what you need to know about caring for all of the different aspects of your health in D.C.
Work-life balance, your mental health, and the D.C. lifestyle
Here in D.C., a lot of important things happen — it’s the nation’s capital, after all. People who work in D.C. tend to be quick-thinking, fast-moving, and hard-working. It’s not unusual to see people rushing to work early or leaving work late — or cutting deals late at night in restaurants or bars. Can anyone in D.C. ever “turn it off?”
Well, if you want to be healthy, you’ll need to find a way to unplug. Experts agree that working too hard can be bad for your mental health. Stress can literally shorten your life, and being “all work and no play” can lead to a crash in your mental health that makes you unable to work effectively — something experts call “burnout.”
Being healthy in D.C. means finding balance in your work and your life. As hard is it can be around here, you need to establish boundaries and set times that you will not work. You also need to take the occasional vacation — but don’t worry, because studies show that a vacation will actually make you more productive.
Mental health and D.C. life
D.C. is a stressful place. It’s not just the work lives that many of us lead, either. Urban life in general, and D.C. life in particular is full of stresses such as Metro trains that unexpectedly run late,, crowds that jostle you, crime, and more.
Fortunately, D.C. is also home to world-class mental health professionals. Everyone in D.C. should strongly consider seeking therapy, the experts at Therapy Group of DC explain. Therapy helps people by giving them a space to evaluate their own thinking and actions. Together with a trained and licensed mental health professional, you will gain insights into your thought processes and strategies that will help you counter negative thinking, bad habits, and poor choices. Therapy can make us happier and healthier, both physically and mentally. It can improve everything from your work life to your personal relationships.
And because mental health is closely connected to physical health, therapy can even help you get better sleep, have fewer headaches, and experience fewer physical pains, depending on your symptoms.
Eating and exercise in D.C.
A busy city like D.C. causes a lot of its residents to eat takeout and go to restaurants while skimping on exercise. When we’re busy, it can seem easier to grab a hamburger and avoid the gym.
But D.C. also has fantastic gyms and lots of great parks – including the National Mall – to jog,. And many of D.C.’s best restaurants include healthy options. If you make a conscious choice to be healthy in D.C., you’ll find that the city’s resources can help you fulfill your promise to yourself.
So try to eat a good diet — one heavy on whole foods (especially vegetables) and light on processed junk. Make exercise a habit and stay the course. If you do, you’ll enjoy a healthier life here in Washington, D.C.