A lot has been written about the relationship between the physical and the psychological, and how they are uniquely intertwined in each of us. Presently, with the winter cold and flu bugs taking their physical toll in South Florida, and the current toxic US political climate, there is a lot to drag us down and make us sick both mentally and physically. Here are a few ways to rise above the negativity and stay content and healthy in a not so perfect world.

Stay active and exercise regularly!  When you exercise your heart begins to pound, your body releases endorphins (the body’s own natural pain killers), which explains why a good run or workout often leaves you feeling relaxed, even elated. Doing your cardio and working out regularly can be a wonderful way to help you feel better, sleep better and look fabulous as well. Don’t confine yourself to a gym. Go dancing, join the bowling or tennis leagues, take a power walk along the beach…the possibilities are limitless.

Let go of negative emotions. The tighter you hold on to miserable baggage like hurt feelings or grudges, the harder it will be to kick it to the curb. Once again, exercise is one of the best ways to vent and release bad energy that holds you back and ties you down.

Accept what you cannot change. Traffic jams, the high cost of living, a lost promotion at work… sometimes there’s not a damn thing you can do! Strive to distinguish between things and people you can change and those you can’t. Rather than incur further drama, accept them for just what they are and move on.

Learn to make the most of your free time. Know when you’ve had enough negativity from the news, turn it off, and get to the gym! Try a new hobby, visit an art exhibit, seek out an old friend, or better yet, volunteer your time to a worthy candidate’s political campaign!

Don’t be afraid to schedule valuable “me” time into your daily agenda. Taking care of your mind and body are essential to your quality of life. Working out, meditation, going for a run, getting a massage or facial, are as crucial to your well being as making money and getting promotions.

Let your light shine. Be nice, be courteous, be pleasant, it doesn’t cost you anything and for the most part it’s easier than being nasty and rude. You are a social creature, and a key ingredient to happiness is social interaction and relations. Hold the door for a stranger, let someone go ahead of you in traffic, greet people on the job or in your neighborhood.