HEALTHY HABITS » 5 Daily habits that changed my life (Food, Exercise, 6-Minute Diary)

Hey and welcome back to another healthy habits that changed my life video. This is part of a series So if you want more inspiration, more tips then I will leave a link to the playlist right here and in the description. Today I share five more healthy habits that have to do with food, exercise and mindfulness. As always, they fit perfectly into a minimalist lifestyle. And they helped me to feel my best mentally, physically and emotionally. So let’s dive right in. Alright so the first healthy habit that I want to share with you today has to do with mindful eating. That means eating without distractions No phone, etc. Yes, I went there. Total honesty… This was a little bit tricky for me in the beginning, and it still is sometimes. But it does really have a good impact on my days and I’ll tell you why. A lot of people eat without much awareness. So they’re eating while they’re also doing other things, and they’re not really experiencing it. And studies have actually shown that this way of eating causes people to feel less full and saturated after a meal. And that can lead to unhealthy snacking later in a day. When you take the time to really enjoy your food, you enjoy the flavors so much more and it’s also a nice way to get out of the thinking mind for a while. Because we all have to eat at least three times a day. So it’s nice to give yourself that time to give yourself a mental break while you’re eating. And of course, if you are eating with others, it’s also a great opportunity to have conversations and catch up. The only moment in the day when I still have trouble with this sometimes is during breakfast time. If I’m having breakfast with my boyfriend, for example, I don’t have a problem with it. But if I’m alone, then I will often watch Netflix while I eat my breakfast. So I know that that is something that I still need to change and that I’m still working on. Mindful eating also helps with digestion because you are eating more slowly and you’re taking the time to properly chew your food. Much better than if you’re just having a sandwich or something while you’re also on the go. And it can also help to reduce food crazings and it can improve your relationship with food if that’s something you are struggling with. And something else that I really like about it is that it helps me to acknowledge that this food is something that keeps me healthy and nourishes my body, and it’s just something to express some gratitude for it occasionally. There’s a lot of crows outside by my balcony right now and my door is open and they’re making a really big ruckus. So if you hear something going on… that’s it. And one is just kind of looking straight at me. So it’s kind of scary. Next healthy habit is something I really needed to train myself to do and it was not easy. I don’t really hear a lot of people talking about this one either. And that is that I stopped sleeping on my stomach. That used to be the only way that I could sleep or fall asleep, and I managed to change it around by practicing, to being able to also fall asleep on my side. I started doing this when I learned why I regularly woke up with headaches in the morning. And just really sore muscles in my lower back. And that has to do with your posture when you’re sleeping, with your head to one side. And having changed this… I don’t really wake up with headaches anymore. Also the muscles of your body are kind of compressed when you sleep on your stomach. Which can make breathing less efficient. And it can even limit blood flow to certain areas of your body, including your brain. And I used to also have a lot more acid reflux, which I don’t have nearly as often now, and there are actually more reasons why sleeping on your stomach is not the best position… or the healthiest position to sleep in. So if you want more info, just google it to learn more. So basically what I did was just being very strict with myself and training myself to fall asleep on my side. While trying to keep my shoulders as open as possible and not letting them get too compressed. It took me about a month to get used to it. But I’m really glad that I did it. And I would love to be able to sleep on my back too. But that kind of seems impossible at the moment. But I’ll keep trying. Also something to keep in mind is making sure that your pillow is high enough. So that when you’re sleeping on your side, your neck is kind of in a neutral position. Because that was something that used to bother me when trying to sleep on my side. So let me know in the comments while your sleeping position is or your preferred sleeping position. And if you’ve tried to change it before and what your experiences are with it. Because I’m still relatively new at this. I would love to be able to fall asleep on my back. So, let’s see if we can help each other out. Next healthy habit is that I stopped consuming sugared drinks. So things like sodas obviously or having sugar in your tea or coffee or things like fruit juice. And I didn’t replace it with any sweeteners either. I just thought that not consuming any drinks with the sugar in it is a great way to cut down on calories and of course on sugar. And it also makes you get used to flavors that are not so sweet. Because that is something that people can get used to easily. Now I don’t even keep sugar in the house. I don’t use it for anything, and if I make something like cookies or vegan cheesecake, I don’t make them that sweet either. I will just use things like dates or bananas and things that are naturally sweet. I just drink lots of water, tea, coffee sometimes or decaf coffee. I might drink something like a fresh ginger tea or mint tea. Which is something that we drink a lot here in the Netherlands actually. And I enjoy this a lot more. It’s better for your weight, and can also really help to cut down on plastic waste and waste from cartons and stuff in general. I also noticed that sugared drinks can have a really big impact on my energy levels. Because they give me this really big spike of energy really fast and then it comes down really quickly and leaves me feeling very tired and lethargic. And I don’t have that anymore. And actually some sweeteners can have a similar effect. So not consuming any sugary drinks has very much helped me to keep stable energy levels. Speaking of energy levels. I have another habit that I changed that I want to share with you. So it’s kind of like a bonus habit. And that is that I stopped drinking coffee after 2:00 p.m So if I want to have coffee after that time I will take a decaf. And I also stopped drinking caffeinated teas after 6 p.m So no black tea or green tea and I switch that to herbal tea, and this greatly helped me to get more stable energy levels during the day and get better sleep. Something I didn’t know is that caffeine actually stays in our system for a really long time, even after you stop feeling the effects of it. And it can impact your sleep for up to six to eight hours after you drink coffee. So if you stop drinking it at 2:00 p.m… you have a higher chance that it won’t impact your sleep. And while tea has less caffeine than coffee… it does have some. So that’s why I stopped drinking it after 6 p.m. Something I also do is have a caffeine free week every now and then. Which was very hard in the beginning Because even though I only drink about one cup of coffee per day max… I still had some withdrawal symptoms, like headaches. This is actually why I think it’s good to do something like that every now and then, and not let your body become too dependent on it. So maybe three or four times a year I will have a caffeine free week. Of course for me it was quite easy to do a caffeine free week because I’m not really used to drinking that much coffee anyway. But if you are, then I do recommend doing some research before you go cold turkey for a week. And I’m actually curious if some of you have tried to quit caffeine before and what your experiences are with it. So share that down below in the comments. Next healthy habit is daily journaling. And I only started doing that this year. And before that I only had a bullet journal and I used that mainly for planning my tasks and organizing my days in my weeks. So I did not really have a journaling practice where I would write down how I feel or what’s going on in my life. And actually I’m not really the type of person who enjoys grabbing a notebook and just writing down my thoughts and feelings, and just random writing down how I feel. I do think that that is a very healthy thing to do, and I did try it a couple of times. But I just couldn’t make it into a habit. It’s just not really my thing. But then I found a way that I can enjoy daily journaling and that is with my six minute diary from UrBestSelf. I actually showed this diary before in my minimalist journaling ideas video and I’m still using it, which is why I am so excited that they agreed to sponsor this video. So a really big thank you to the 6-Minute Diary for supporting this channel. Now when it comes to journaling, I would advise to just try out different formats and see what works for you. For me… I like this one best. Because it has a set structure and it only takes three minutes in the morning and three in the evening. So that’s why I really like it, but maybe for you, it’s just grabbing a notebook and writing whatever pops in your head. So try out different things and see what works for you. If you want more info about the six minute diary… I will leave a link for you in the description and in the pinned comment. And I will also link my minimalist journaling ideas video because I do I flip through of this one so you can see the inside, and get a little bit more info there. Alright on to the fifth and final healthy habit for today. The last healthy habit for today is one that really works wonders for me, and that is doing some physical activity when my mind is busy or in turmoil, or when I feel a little bit stressed or anxious. So if I have a bit of a monkey mind, doing something physical instead. This actually works a lot better than what I used to do, which was basically just resting. So if I was just having a bad day or experiencing a bad mood or a felt stress or anything like that… What I would do is basically just take some time and allow myself to rest. So I would maybe watch some Netflix, or play a game, or read a book, etc. And of course, it is important to… the crows again! To take enough rest… I do find that it didn’t really help me to get into a better mood the way that’s stretching or exercising does. When we feel like that it’s really easy to get caught up in our thoughts and emotions and kind of forget that we are not just this. We also have a body attached to it. And if you are trying to get out of your head by watching a movie, for example… It doesn’t really help because you’re substituting one mental thing for another. And I find that taking a short moment to be active physically really does help me to get out of my head a little bit. Even if I am super tired and not feeling it at all… I always notice that after a few minutes, I already start to feel a little better. So sometimes I might do some light stretching with little deep breathing exercises. And I might even grab some pillows and make it really comfortable and restorative. Sometimes I will do a high-intensity workout or a power yoga session. So it kind of depends on my mood. and of course, if the weather is nice then going for a long walk also works wonders. If the crows let you out. Even if I don’t have much time, sometimes that will take like 30 seconds or a minute to stand in a forward fold against my kitchen cabinets or just put my legs up the wall. Something where there’s an inversion. And I know that may sound kind of strange but it does really help. Thanks so much for watching my friend. Check out the healthy habits playlist if you want more inspiration. And of course subscribe to the channel if you haven’t already. And if you want to help me out… then you can do so by giving this video a thumbs up. And of course have a lovely day, and I’ll see you next week. Bye bye!

98 Replies to “HEALTHY HABITS » 5 Daily habits that changed my life (Food, Exercise, 6-Minute Diary)

  1. Happy Saturday and thanks for watching! 😊 Click here for the video with minimalist journaling ideas: 📖 and here for more info about the 6-Minute Diary:

  2. Great reminders , Vera. I’m checking out The 6-Minute Diary. Sounds like it might be a wonderful gift for some close friends.

  3. I m always looking forward to your healthy habit videos ❤️ !! Definitely my favourites! …I sleep flat on my back with my hands over my head. Sunbathing and sleeping, exactly the same posture 😄

  4. Vera, these videos are just works of art. The first point was one I still need to be more mindful of. Thank you for your dedication to helping others lead happer, healthier lives. This channel is a huge resource! 💕💕💕🦋😊✨

  5. Didn't know about the sleeping patterns. Thanks for sharing. My problem too, is coffee and I am trying to reduce it. I still haven't been successful. Let me see if I can do in future. Carbonated drinks I had Stopped long back. 🙂

  6. I purchased the 6 Minute Diary when you mentioned in a video a few months ago and I love it….still using it…LOL….great video as always honey….

  7. yesterday I got upset over the smallest thing and I was frustrated. I went to exercise to clear my head and felt a lot better and calmer after my workout. I used to love sleeping my on my stomach too 😊

  8. It sounds crazy i know, but would be lovely to know you in real and talk with you! Thanks for your amazing videos! 🍀

  9. Your Healthy Habits videos have inspired me to suggest a healthy habit each week to my Yoga students. This week I will give them each a small smoothie made with just banana, tahini, cocoa, and water as a reminder to replenish their systems following a strong Yoga practice or other workout with a snack containing protein, carbs, and fats. Thanks for the inspiration.

  10. I broke the habit of sleeping on my stomach by hugging a pillow (such that it touches the stomach, use cylindrical shaped pillows) while sleeping on my side. It gives the illusion of sleeping on stomach, try it out.

  11. Sometimes it is better to be kind than to be right. We do not always need an intelligent mind that speaks, just a patient heart that listens

  12. Hi Vera. Thank you for your new video. I'm trying to get back to healthy eating and exercise. Still praying for you.

  13. Mindful eating..hmmmm
    I cook and food shop mindfully but I never thought about eating mindfully. I definitely need some media when I'm alone and eating and MOST DEFINITELY when I'm eating with someone else. I have issues with food/eating sounds. I have to mask those sounds with a little music or background noise. Pffff

  14. I had a cervical disc replacement a couple of years ago. A good tip that my spinal surgeon gave me was to use several pillows during sleeping on my side. One is used to support your neck, one should go between your knees, and the third goes between your arms in a hug. This keeps one's spine in a natural position. When I actually do this (which is not often, unfortunately), it does seem to help the quality of my sleep.

  15. I don’t drink fizzy drinks except when I’m out having a meal or at the pub which isn’t often. I had an intolerance to food colouring and could not have any E no’s at all. So I never developed a taste for fizzy drinks. I grew up on tea. But now I can not drink much tea as I can not have too much lactose. So I only have tea now when I’m out.

  16. I'm hearing crows here too as I watch your video. 🙂 At least they aren't staring at me.

    Some comments about how I apply what you've shared. Even when I lived alone, I would sit at the table and eat. I'd even set out a nice table setting. I found it helped me relax. I only drink sodas when I have a migraine because they settle my stomach, so I always have them in the house. As far as sleeping position, I love sleeping on my stomach too but have been training myself to sleep on my side also because of headaches too. I drink only one or two cups of decaf coffee in the morning because I suffer from insomnia. The area I'm lacking in your suggestions is exercise. We won't talk about my diet though. Oh, I've been keeping a journal since eighth grade (I'm 58)

  17. I thought I'd post this separately. Does anyone have a recommendation for a good pillow? I live in the US. Thank you. 🙂

  18. Great video as always, mindful eating is very important I sometimes eat while I'm walking or cleaning and its really not healthy, I also love all the five habits you mentioned. Happy Saturday

  19. Sleep on the back: 2 pillows. Or only one but on the eyes. So that you are fully covered except for the nose. Sometimes I even leave the arm's back holding the upper pillow. Very open, deeply relaxing

  20. I sleep on my right side though while sleeping half the time I find myself on my back when I wake up. 😅🙈
    I’m with you though on the coffee. I realized how much it effects me so I usually only have one cup a day. My sleep has improved so much since then.
    Soon I really want to add exercise as a habit. I added writing as a habit and I have wrote so much since I started in September and it makes me happy. I have used the app Productivity to track it and now I want to add exercise to it but it will take awhile because I just had oral surgery and I can’t do much for now. Can’t wait to start though once everything is cleared! ☺️

  21. Hi Vera, nice to see you ♥.
    Uploaded content was great.
    Just a quick suggestion for next video.
    Can you make video about Yoga or relaxation therapy. It could help people to live stress-free life or how to cope up with our busy and hectic schedule.

    Happy to see you ♥ ♥

    Have a nice weekend 🙂 🙂

  22. Tip for sleeping on your back, roll up a blanket or pillow and use it under your knees. It'll help release your low back and make it a little more comfortable. Also using a heating pad on your stomach might help you feel less exposed.

  23. For me the easiest way to change habits is to just stop doing them. So to implement a healthy habit is just start with one.
    By the way I'm improving my live from next week on I Wil Liv in a van.
    This is after starting to eat one meal a day.
    I also found the stoicism that helps to sea things in a other way.
    Next fase will be implementing another sleeping pattern. Polyphasic
    As always thanks for sharing your experience. Regards Johan

  24. I love to sleep flat on my back or on my side with a pillow between my legs (it helps for the lower back pain). However, my husband is forbidding me to sleep on my back, because it is the main snoring position and he can't stand it.

  25. I've tried to quit caffeine cold turkey. Got horrible head aches. So I went back to drinking coffee.
    Now I only drink coffee once a day.

  26. Hi lovely hope your ok god that’s us always busy everybody out and in on different shifts. And you have tea and everyone’s phones pinging it used to be no phones at the table it used to work but there grown up now lol. Great vlog again lovely to see you xxx

  27. Hey Vera great tips.really loving this series. I sleep on my left side in a fetus position with a pillow between my knees.that helps me
    because I have a bad back. We do not like cell phones at the table when we are eating. We feel that it's rude.

  28. You're a pure gem and I value your insight and wisdom. Thanks for putting it out there and keep them coming! 🙂 I sleep on my side but am trying to learn to sleep on my back as my shoulders hurt.

  29. I always fall asleep on my back — I find that its the most comfortable for me and it eases my upper back tension as well. Sleeping on my side is also comfortable but most of the time I'm able to fall asleep on my back faster (:

  30. You once mentioned talking to one's stomach and digesting system. Would you please go into detail about that in one video? Nice video!

  31. The last habit helps me the most!
    Can you also please make a video on your beauty products / makeup that you use or have cut out of your routine?

  32. Hi Vera, I too quit sleeping on my stomach since i was having bad back pain. I sleep on my side with pillow between my legs. It helps my back. I just can’t sleep on back for some reason. Thank you for all great information as always. I hope you have a beautiful week!😘

  33. Great video, as always! I especially enjoyed the crows. Kind of ironic that when I finished watching, the ad banner at the bottom of the vid was for “all” Hmmmm…were the crows there on purpose? 😂

  34. I used to sleep on my back, I loved it , but I has to stop because I am really heavy now and I can´t breath properly so I snore a lot, I am working to lose weight and one of the reasons is to sleep on my back again.

  35. I am grateful for you and your suggestions, and I find it always comes at just the right time. May peace be in your heart, my friend. 🙏🏻

  36. These are all great habits! I can't drink coffee after 5pm, otherwise, I'd start feeling very anxious so I stick with tea after that time. I also started drinking fennel tea with a drop of honey in the evenings and it does wonders for my digestion.

    I don't write every single day in my journal, but very often and it's usually in a stream of consciousness way. It may sound silly in the beginning, but it's like writing a letter to a very close friend for me. ☺

  37. Ah, coffee…I tied to quit drinking coffee countless times but to no avail. I think there's a glimmer of hope because I only do coffee once a day with a friend. It's a nice way to relax and have a break. Great video as always, Vera!

  38. Best time to stop drinking caffeine for me has been if I catch a cold. I likely don't feel all that great anyway, so any headaches aren't as noticeable and I usually have time off from regular activities, too. Drink lots of non-caffeinated herbal tea to steer the habit of enjoying a hot drink towards something else and something that helps your body when sick.

  39. I. just found your channel and I really enjoyed your video! I follow quite a few of these. habits, like not drinking any sugared drinks, but sugar in general is something that I struggle with a lot. I recently tried to cut out added sugars after having a verrrrry bad chocolate-day and oh my, the next day without any sugar was horrible. After lunch (the time where I usually snack on something sweet), I got the worst headaches and was super tired for at least two hours. I did it for about a week, now I'm back to eating way to much sweets again. Do you have any tipps for me on how. to cut out sugar more sustainably? Any help would be highly appreciated! 🙂

  40. I fall asleep on my side and wake up on my back. When I rarely wake up on my stomach, I find that I have a sore neck. Good for you for working to change your sleeping habits!

  41. Hello Vera good points did the crows fly away or did they try to bother you just curious were you able to work around them?

  42. I gave up my memory foam mattress in 2011 because it almost killed me (literally), then researched to find what would be the best chemical-free mattress and pillow setup. That led me to the Japanese style of sleeping with a cotton futon and buckwheat hull pillows. For an extra Japanese boost you can go with the silk-lined comforter on top, sleep on the floor on a tatami mat or get a twin-bed-sized tatami mat to use as a mattress platform on your twin bed frame and put the futon on top of it. Cotton futons have to air out, which is why in the traditional Japanese homes theyʻre folded up and stored in a closet during the day and brought out at night for sleeping.

    I could never quite get the right pillow before going the Japanese route. I tried foam pillows, memory foam, down pillows, fake down pillows; nothing worked just right. Sleeping on a very firm cotton futon and using the buckwheat hull pillows has been a godsend to me. I do sleep on my back and on my side, but never on my stomach.

    If you get the futon setup and the neck roll pillow, youʻll stick the pillow under your neck, sleep on your back, and thereʻs no stress on your muscles.

    I also sleep with a rectangular shaped buckwheat hull pillow and hold that next to my stomach (sometimes) to help me go to sleep. So I have two pillows in bed: the neck roll pillow that I sleep on most of the time, and the small rectangular pillow.

    I bought my original stuff online from the company J-Life International. I bought the pillows, the futon, the futon cover, and the comforter and comforter cover, for way less than a memory foam mattress, and itʻs all natural, chemical-free.

  43. I've noticed with coffee that if I drink it at all I can't sleep at night. I heard that it can affect us for up to 12 hours. It gives me really bad acid reflux also due to the acidity.

  44. I've also been trying to sleep on my back or left side (I heard the right side is also not a healthy sleeping position because your organs are inverted) and it's a little hard after years of stomach sleeping~ I do find that my acid reflux has gotten better, my headaches have improved, I don't wake up as much in the night (possible sleep apnea), I don't wake up with as much back pain, and I don't have as many nightmares when I am not sleeping on my stomach, so it's definitely worth it~

    Also, I went from drinking tons of diet coke and coffees a day to col turkey… I felt like I had the flu and my body was shaking and I was so irritable for about a week… but since then, I haven't really gone back. I mostly drink water or some ginger or green tea~ I can't drink mint tea as that upsets my acid reflux, but I do like other, more calming teas ^.^ Thanks for another lovely video~ ^.^

  45. When i cut out caffeine a few years ago, i just mixed regular grounds with decaf grounds before brewing and slowly (over a month or so) changed the ratio from 3/4 caff to 1/4 decaf… then 1/2 caff to 1/2 decaf… then 1/4 caff to 3/4 decaf… then 100% decaf 😊 and now i don't drink coffee at all!

  46. Hi Vera I try not to have caffeine after lunchtime it really helps with my sleep pattern and helps my stress levels a lot? A tip for sleeping on your back is to have a look at a wedge shaped pillows? It may take some getting used too just like not sleeping on your stomach did? I haven’t tried one yet but have seen people on you tube using them mostly for beauty reason ie less wrinkles 😀 There is always such good content in your videos I will be trying the physical exercises instead of resting and will try to get my husband out of the bad habit of watching tv while eating I’ve never liked that! thank you as always ❤️

  47. I am am/was a huge stomach sleeper and often wake up with headaches/neck pain. About 6 mo ago, I learned that sleeping on your side (left side specifically) is good for digestion. So, I have began to do that and have noticed a difference in how I feel when I wake up! It really works! I am working to add in my back but it is tough for me to stay sleeping on my back so I sure understand that.
    No artificial sweeteners here! They make me feel queasy and I instantly know if they are in something that I might eat or drink. I drink water and tea, black and herbal, hot and iced. I have never had a taste for coffee so I am the odd one, there. I used to drink sweet tea and have since, ditched the sugar. The other day at church, my husband and I accidentally got sweet tea instead of unsweetened and we couldn't believe how sweet it was.
    I used to love drinking soda when I was younger and (less wise;). I loved Diet Pepsi, specifically. I know that this sounds silly to people when I tell about it, but I ditched my soda addiction when I was 25, upon finding out that I expecting my first child. Something about knowing that I was filling up on something without any nutrients made me feel very guilty, especially knowing that a little life was being created. I am happy to say that the habit of no soda drinking has stayed with me for the past 23 years 🙂 Carbonated beverages make my stomach feel awful, now.
    You are very wise and have very healthy habits, Vera!! Thank you for sharing your wisdom and insight with us 😀

  48. I have knobby knees so I sleep with a pillow between them as I sleep on my side pretty much always. I find it's more comfortable and I have less bruises on my legs.

  49. About sleeping positions, I like to sleep on my back or sides. I find that when I sleep on my back, I like to keep my arms beside my body. It is relaxing to my forearm muscles with palms open and facing upwards when I sleep on my back.

  50. I love this video 👍🏼💚 Great healthy habits💚
    No coffee after 3 pm has greatly enhanced my sleep in the nights✅
    And exercising to clear your mind👍🏼 I couldn’t agree more with this! As always, a wonderful video dear👍🏼💕
    Thanks for sharing ❤️

  51. I was NEVER able to sleep on my back until I got the right bed and pillow. I know its a major expense a lot of folks can't do but its made a huge difference to me. I have a purple, but I think most quality mattresses can really help with sleep. I poo-pooed it but then had really bad back problems from a long commute last summer and the bed helped tremendously. Anyway. That's my two sense. I used to be pretty extreme on the minimal bend and slept on the floor. It was hard to switch. Glad I did honestly.

  52. Just wanted to leave a comment here to say that this video is amazing! I found this video so honest and loving. Thanks for sharing all the great habits. I didn't know how bad it was to sleep on my back, I always wake up with back pain. Definitely going to try sleeping on my side. Happy to have found your channel 😊💗

  53. I quit the caffeine habit over the course of a week or so reducing every cup of coffee/tea/soda by a few ounces daily. No bad headaches just mild body aches and brain fog for about a month or two. It'll be 2 years December 5. I do drink sugary drinks like real lemonade, quality hot chocolate, cherry juice, smoothies and wine though.

  54. Great video as always. I stopped consuming sugary drinks myself recently and switched to brown sugar but I like your idea for using natural sweeteners and will try it. I also don't like distractions when I'm eating and even get irritated when people I don't know well watch me eat. I sometimes watch your videos while eating though, so I guess you don't irritate me while I eat. On a side note, this video was interesting because my neighbors rooster was crowing as your crows were roosting.

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