Ah, the new year. Fresh with possibilities, January is a prime time to embrace optimism and to look for ways to better prioritize our health + well-being. A great place to start: See ”well-being” as the health of mind, body, and soul — and the foundation we rely on to help us reach goals, cope with life’s stressors, and meet our needs (and those around us).
Here to help you make this year your year are these eight simple ways to live healthier in Chattanooga in 2024, thanks to the help of local Erlanger physicians.
Make self-care a daily habit
A solid sense of well-being isn’t built in an afternoon. Integrating self-care into your everyday routine is key — and it’s worth making a priority.
Take care of your physical health
- Get your local fix: Dr. Steven Fox, a lifestyle medicine physician with Erlanger Family Medicine, leads Chattanooga’s “Walk with a Doc” program. Join him and other community members on the first Saturday of each month to get moving.
Spend more time outside
Twenty minutes outside each day can improve mood and increase vitamin D.
- Get your local fix: Breathe in the fresh air + get some quality off-screen time at any of these 30+ nature, family, sports, and dog parks around Chattanooga.
Speak to someone
You don’t have to be diagnosed with a mental health issue to benefit from therapy. Many people in therapy seek help for everyday concerns, such as relationship problems or job stress.
Find an activity or hobby you enjoy
Research shows that people with purposeful activity are less likely to suffer from stress, low mood, and depression.
- Get your local fix: Give the game of pickleball a try. Whether you want to join a local league or play a few friendly games, pickleball is great for moving your body, exercising your competitive spirit, and making friends.
Write a list of things for which you’re thankful. Expressing gratitude is associated with many mental and physical benefits, like improved sleep, mood, and immunity.
Learn something new
Research shows that learning new skills can boost self-confidence and self-esteem, as well as help build connections with others and a sense of purpose.
- Get your local fix: From ceramic pottery and cooking to belly dancing and printmaking, The Chattery has an endless list of classes and programming.
Establishing boundaries is good for you and those around you. People will understand your limits and know what you’re comfortable with. Learn how to say “no.”
Set realistic expectations
Putting too much on your to-do list can cause stress. Look for the strengths in yourself (and in others) and start celebrating what you have accomplished rather than focusing on what you haven’t.
Speaking with your primary care provider is a great place to start when it comes to maintaining your health + well-being. Don’t have a provider? Find a doctor or call 423-778-DOCS to make an appointment.