Living with anxiety or depression is exhausting. It physically exhausts you.
But what if some of that tiredness doesn't come from your mental health problems?
What if it is because you're simply chronically dehydrated?
Some symptoms of being chronically dehydrated:
You know that I'm all about easy solutions to things. And simply drinking water to feel better? Easy as it gets!
I am very sensitive to dehydration myself. Maybe it's because I once got so dehydrated that I got disoriented and sick for two days (I don't even know how I managed to walk home from class), or because I learned to pay better attention to my body cues, but for whatever reason I feel the effects very quickly.
The truth is that most people go about their days in a state of light dehydration and just accept that they always feel tired or have dry lips. But it's such an easy fix!
Working out regularly or cooking healthy foods can take such time and dedication it's no wonder it's hard to keep up. But staying hydrated? It can affect your body and mind in such dramatic ways it seems kind of dumb not to, right?
I would say that the biggest factors in not drinking enough water are simply forgetting to do it/being lazy about it. If you're slightly dehydrated every day you actually get so used to it that you don't really feel thirsty anymore, so no wonder it's so hard to remember!
So if you're struggling to get enough H2O, here are 8 easy tips to help you out. :)
1. Have a designated water bottle for the house
Drinking from the same water bottle helps reinforce the habit. It gives you a bigger water reserve to carry with you than a normal glass, and you will drink it just because it's there! We are creatures of comfort, after all.
I got a nice glass Contigo water bottle with a silicon cover for just $9 at Walmart. It's really good quality and will last me a long time, plus it makes me happy just to see it (it's teal, my favorite color). It's also spill-proof if you have cats who are jerks. . . .
2. Always take a bottle of water in the car with you
I don't know why, but I always feel so thirsty when I'm driving! Even in the winter when it's cold outside. So I make sure to always bring a 750ml bottle of water with me so I can hydrate before and after my errands.
Photo by Ryan Everton
3. Sip on hot water at your desk
This is something I LOVE to do. I got a gorgeous ceramic travel mug when I worked at Starbucks (ocean teal with a golden quote in a snirkly font) and it's the only mug I ever use for hot beverages.
I used to be a huge tea-lover, but now I actually prefer the taste of simple hot water! I've heard it being called "silver tea."
This is great in the winter to warm you up and it's got tons of health benefits, like:
4. Have a water cup by the kitchen sink
I always have a cup on the counter, either my Berner Mom mug that I got for Christmas or my D.C. Zoo mug. They serve two purposes;
5. Replace Gatorade with coconut water
Instead of using Gatorade or Powerade after your workout, try coconut water!
It's rich in electrolytes, like potassium, sodium, and chloride, has a very high water content, and is a lot healthier than the sugar-laden sports drinks!
Photo by Drew Coffman
6. Flavor the water to keep it interesting
If you've been favoring sodas etc. in the past because water is "boring," this is for you. You can either get a bottle with a fruit infuser built in or just keep a carafe in the fridge filled with any combination of:
7. Set a timer on your phone
As you know from How to schedule your day -- A guide for the easily overwhelmed, I love the use of timers to remind me of appointments and tasks. If you're really struggling to remember to drink water, set a regular timer to jolt you into action and drink a glass. You can also use a free app like Daily Water for alarms and tracking to keep yourself accountable! Here is a roundup of the 10 best free water apps to use.
8. Eat water-rich foods
You can also get water directly from fruit and vegetables! For example:
Photo by Brooke Lark
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Hi, I'm Erika!
I know what it's like living with anxiety and depression, but living and living are very different things. I believe in practical tips and methods, and I will use them to help you be the brave, daring, darling individual you are.
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