There is a lot of emphasis these days on quantity of life. It’s hard to go a day without seeing a report about how this treatment or that vegetable will make you live longer. In all this talk about more life, there seems to be much less emphasis on quality of life. While there isn’t a good general definition, it’s easiest to think of quality of life as your overall sense of well-being and happiness about your life. Even if yours is good, though, there are always ways to invest in a better quality of life.
Mattresses don’t generate much enthusiasm, but they’re worthy of some attention. A poor quality mattress can hamper your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep. According to a 2005 study, chronically getting insufficient sleep has a negative impact on “…executive attention, working memory, and divergent higher cognitive functions…” It also reduces your energy levels and can impact your weight.
A quality mattress, on the other hand, has demonstrable benefits. It will help you sleep through the night, which helps you avoid the problems associated with chronic sleep restriction. A good mattress can decrease stress and even help resolve back pain. Not a bad return on an investment you make once a decade.
Around 28% of Americans report that they don’t know how to cook. Even if that number is exaggerated by those with poor cooking skills identifying as not knowing how to cook, it’s still concerning. Just as concerning is that the number of homemade meals is dropping. What happens instead is that people buy prepared food and then serve it at home.
Learning to cook through cooking classes offers a lot of benefits. A cooking class is almost always a social environment. Socializing is good for your well-being. Knowing how to cook, and being confident that you can, increases the odds that you will. The real benefits to your quality of life are probably going to be health related. Cooking at home gives you portion control, a key factor of weight control. It also allows you to incorporate more nutritious ingredients while minimizing fats and sugars.
It’s a common refrain in sitcoms. At least some of the character hate their jobs. It turns out that it’s an even more common refrain in real life. A Gallup poll estimates that around 70% of people either don’t care about their jobs or actively hate them. That kind of emotional response to something you do 40 or more hours a week can’t help but negatively impact your quality of life.
Switching careers is a daunting task, but probably not more daunting than another 20 years at a job you can’t stand. The benefit of switching careers as an adult is that you have hindsight and self-knowledge to draw on. Do you spend every spare minute writing computer code, or writing, or cooking? These passions signal potential careers that would bolster your quality of life. You can get a start on a new career by going back to school, taking online trade courses like Success Path, or even getting an internship.
Get and Use a Gym Membership
Doctors have been saying that a sedentary lifestyle is bad for us for a long time. The only cure for that problem is to stay physically active. There, of course, is the rub. Modern life is rife with demands and distractions. Even the most well-intentioned people find themselves ditching exercise because a seemingly more pressing matter is at hand.
Getting and using a gym membership is an efficient way to deal with all of these problems. A gym is an environment dedicated to exercise and removed from the normal distractions. The quality of life benefits of exercise are too numerous to list, but include weight control, cardiovascular health, mood improvement and higher energy levels.
Quality of life often hinges on internal factors, but you can make investments that will pay quality of life dividends. A good mattress and regular exercise will improve your physical well-being and psychological well-being. A vacation lets you disconnect from your everyday stresses. Cooking classes give you a chance to both socialize and take some control over your nutrition. Putting all of these together should lead to a marked improvement in your quality of life.