9 Ways to a Healthier and Happier Independence Day
For those living in the United States, summer has arrived. Children are out of school, many families are looking to enjoy some time off, and temperatures are often increasing as Independence Day nears. Alcohol and fireworks are bought, and family gatherings and robust parities are planned So much is piled on for this mid-year holiday. With all of this comes a number of great opportunities to enjoy a great time, but the Independence Day holiday also provides for some increased risk that could lead to a miserable or even fatal holiday experience. As a result, it is important to balance out all of the fun with a few helpful actions. Here are nine quick tips to help you have a healthier and happier Independence Day.
Drink Lots of Water
The summer is here, and that usually means that temperatures are on the rise. With so much going on during the holidays, it is common for people to forget to pause and drink water. Usually, when you feel thirsty, you are already less hydrated than you think. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to consider drinking water. By making sure to have water nearby and readily available, you and your guests can stay hydrated and enjoy a better holiday experience.
When the holidays near, you, your friends, and your family may want to celebrate with a few beers, some liquor, or a couple of glasses of wine. No matter your adult beverage of choice, be sure that you drink responsibly. If you are going out with others and are relying on your vehicle (i.e. car, motor home, or even boat), be sure you know who the designated driver will be. Don’t have a designated driver? Well, then either stop drinking early so you’ll be sober before driving or call for a taxi or ride share (i.e. Lyft or Uber). Remember that drinking and driving does NOT just apply to vehicles on the road. Driving a boat or off-road vehicle while drunk or “buzzed” can be just as dangerous for you and those around you. When in doubt, just don’t do it. Also, if you have a designated driver and you plan to drink a lot, you still should consider having regular water nearby too, especially when the temperatures are higher during the middle of the afternoon. Drinking alcohol by itself will dehydrate you; balancing your alcoholic beverage intake with some regular, hydrating fluids will allow you to have a more enjoyable holiday and morning after.
Cook Food Thoroughly
Often, the holidays come with some festive meal with friends and family. Be sure that you take the time to handle and cook the food correctly. Undercooking food can result in a miserable evening or even a visit to the emergency room. Don’t damper your holiday fun by overlooking the need to properly cook the food. Also, if you have a lot of people gathering for a meal, take an extra second to check to see if anyone has food allergies. You might cook with peanuts, but your friend who you didn’t know has a peanut allergy may not bring it up in conversation. With the holidays being so busy, it might be better to include this in any pre-event communication with those friends and family members who are gathering for the meal.
Don’t Rush The Firework Show
Independence Day is a holiday to celebrate; it represents so much for those in the United States, and it also is a holiday that takes place during a great time of the year – summer! Hence, this holiday usually comes with a firework display. If you are planning to put on your own firework display, be sure to take a little extra time and caution. If you are lighting the fireworks yourself, be sure the area is clear of bystanders (especially children) and free of easily ignitable brush.
Allow Yourself Extra Time
Speaking about NOT rushing, you’re not the only one trying to get out of town, get to the special in-town festival, grab last minute groceries, or forgot a few last-minute items for your holiday gathering. Life is stressful enough, and holiday demands can often magnify those even more. So, do your due diligence and plan ahead. If you are traveling anywhere or making a few stops at sores, roadways and stores will likely be a bit more crowded. As a result, allow yourself more time – leave earlier and go with the flow. If you leave late and get stuck in a traffic jam or crowded checkout line, your stress levels often increase, and you arrive later than anticipated. Giving yourself some more cushion will enable you to have a safe and less stressful time!
Get in Some Exercise
With the additional errand running that you are likely to be doing, don’t forget about the importance of a little exercise. Sure, your schedule might not allow that multi-hour, crazy-intense workout at your favorite gym or outdoor park, but a little still goes a long way. Find time to get some exercise in; doing so should help enhance the metabolism and get your holiday off in the right direction.
Rest! Rest! Rest!
Whether you will be out on the boat for a day or two, heading out of town on vacation, hosting friends and family, or even taking any free time to catch up on household tasks, it is important that you still take time to relax. It is no coincidence that Dr. Stephen R. Covey listed “Sharpen the Saw” as one of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Take a break, kick back, and get some REST! Your body will likely need it, and you shouldn’t ignore your body, especially on the holidays. Use this time to recharge!
Life is too short to NOT make the most of the time we all share with one another. Your friends and family are the most important people in your life, so reach out and communicate. Spending some time together on the holidays is a great way to connect and solidify the great bonds we have previously built up with
Chew Your Food!
Holidays are synonymous with food. It is hard to go to a special event or a friend’s house without seeing and eating food. From hot dog eating contests to relaxed cook outs in the backyard, do yourself a favor and chew your food. Most often, you have plenty of time to eat. Take your time and chew your food. Like many of the other tips listed above, this tip sounds like complete common sense, right? It is common sense, but sometimes common sense isn’t as common, and we can all easily get distracted by a number of things. Simply said, take your time and enjoy the moment; nobody wants to have to administer the Heimlich Maneuver on anyone.
So, there you have it – nine quick and simple tips to make this and every Independence Day the best experience ever! Take the time to enjoy the holiday.