AD collaborative post // If you spend a reasonable amount of time on social media, it sometimes feels like the secret to everyone’s success is an extreme self-improvement regime. You know the kind of thing – getting up at 4AM for a cold shower, followed by a single cornflake with a drop of water for breakfast and a 12 hour day ahead of you on your combo treadmill/workstation.

At worst, these regimes are downright lies – at best, they can only be completed by single people with no commitments to partners, kids or other dependents.

But there are a few gentle and manageable ways to make a difference in your life – take a look at these five realistic self-improvement tips for busy people!

1. Physical fitness

When you have young children, it can be tough even making it to the gym regularly enough to make your membership worthwhile.

But with bodyweight exercises or some limited equipment, you can complete high intensity interval training (HIIT) at home, getting that buzz of endorphins and seeing results with just 15-25 minutes a day. Take a look at this Joe Wicks kettlebell workout and you’ll get the idea.

2. Mindfulness

You can’t control what life throws at you each day, but you can control how you react to it and disciplines like mindfulness are the key.

A secular version of Buddhist meditation, mindfulness exercises can be completed in under a minute whenever you need to feel calm and collected – you can download apps like Calm on your phone so that composure is always at your fingertips.

3. Diet

If you’ve found yourself putting on a few pounds (or more) during lockdown, don’t beat yourself up – even at the best of times, a balanced diet is often the first thing to suffer when you have hectic work and family commitments.

But if you don’t have time to attend weekly weigh-ins and support sessions in person, there is a solution – digital services like Slimming World Online which offer you the same level of support, advice and encouragement from your home.

4. Work

Most of us need to have some sort of paid employment to keep a roof over our heads, food on the table and, if we’re lucky, to fund a few luxuries like holidays and home improvements. But millions of us are also unhappy in our jobs too – which can cause serious health problems, including stress.

So a key part of your self-improvement program could be finding a new job which is more rewarding and less anxiety-inducing – perhaps a digital job like copywriting or virtual assistant would be more convenient that your current gig?

5. Education

Further education can be the gift that keeps giving for anyone dedicated to lifelong self-improvement – it gives you a broader perspective on life, introduces to diverse cultures and provides a passport to more fulfilling careers. Plus, an online degree with the likes of ARU Distance Learning allows you to study flexibly while maintaining work and family duties.

These five self-improvement tips for busy people help you to make genuine changes in your life – with not a 4AM start or cold shower in sight!

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