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Lifestyle Assessment: Personal Experiences Self Evaluation Essay

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Updated: May 19th, 2022

Introduction

Lifestyle refers to the way in which a person lives. It involves activities and behavior of an individual. In this paper, I have comprehensively assessed my lifestyle. In the paper, I have discussed my lifestyle, the changes that I should make in my life, rationale to the changes and strategies into such changes.

My current lifestyle

Evaluation into my lifestyle revealed the following features:

Physical activity: My normal weekly schedule is fixed with a number of physical activity exercises. I normally attend physical exercise sessions on an average of two days in a week. Such exercises include body weight activities and stretches for physical fitness. I also like playing football and occasionally I join the local club for some training sessions over weekends. I can therefore claim to be physically fit following my regular physical activities.

Nutrition: I normally ensure that I have balanced diets in my meals. Consultations and personal research through reading, which is my hobby, has also helped me to know the types of food that are less contaminated with dangerous chemicals and toxic biological contents. My meals are normally sufficiently rich in vegetables, and elements of proteins, carbohydrates and fruits. I therefore consider my self to be under a healthy diet though I am slightly overweight. My weight has always been averaging at five kilograms above my recommended weight bracket. Though my body weight increases whenever I reduce my physical activity, I normally check on it through working out.

Sleep: Due to the number of activities that I undertake and the social responsibilities that ties me to commitments, I do find my self strained to reduce my sleeping hours. Socializing, for example, besides other responsibilities forces me to extend my schedule late into the night. I, however, try to fix between five to seven hours for daily night sleeps depending on the level of commitments in each given day.

Stress: this has been an unavoidable element of my life. Stress that comes from frustrating relationships and activities seems to ever exist. I, however, have been taking refuge in social activities like games and working out to help me pass time from stress.

Mental health: From the fact that I undertake my activities on a regular basis and have not been pronounced to have any mental complication, I can declare my mental health to be in good condition.

Social health: My social life can averagely be termed as good following my social engagements in sports where I meet and talk with people. I also value friendships and strive to make and keep friends.

Practicing safe sex: following the available information on the dangers that are associated with sexual interactions such as sexually transmitted infections and diseases together with illegitimate pregnancies, I take it as my responsibility to refrain from compromising situations that can influence me into risky sexual behavior.

Avoiding destructive habits: Though occasionally involved in alcohol consumption in the company of friends who at times induces extra pressure on me, I try to minimize my alcohol intake to avoid instances of addiction into drugs. I also try to avoid these companies whenever they beforehand pose a threat to further influences.

Consumer information: I have purposed to keep myself up to date regarding consumer goods that are availed at the market. Using media commentaries and personal readings, I capture most of the highlighted dangerous commodities by experts and then try to avoid such goods.

I can therefore declare my health to be fair on the basis of the above mentioned guidelines. Improvements are however necessary since these standards are not perfect.

Rationale for change

There are a number of factors that I have considered for change in my lifestyle following the evaluation and analysis. One of the major reasons that are driving my thought over changed lifestyle is a medical complication that I have been associated with. I was diagnosed with asthma in my childhood and the complication has ever since been a challenge to my life. Asthma has been recorded in a number of my relatives. Those who were significantly affected by the complication were my eldest uncle who always registered attacks almost throughout his life and my grandfather as well. This induces the concept of the hereditary nature of the complication. Asthma has been a key factor in my lifestyle and is again playing an important role in the way I am going to make changes in my lifestyle.

One of the changes that I am going to undertake is with respect to avoiding destructive habits. My presence in social places some of which include people who use other drugs including cigarettes always posses some amount of risk to my health. This is because exposure to smoke and smells triggers my asthmatic attacks. The involvements in other different drugs such as alcohol also have direct impacts on my condition. In the social places and after taking alcohol, I loose my sense of protection and expose my self to cold which also triggers my asthmatic attacks taking into consideration the fact that the drinking is mostly carried out at night. I am therefore going to consider my manner of socializing in order to avoid involvement in drinking and interaction with the allergy sources from the other drugs. By avoiding being involved in drinking, I will be reducing the risk of getting indulged in sexual activities.

Another area that needs improvement in my life is in the level of physical activity. I have been occasionally advised to engage more in sports following the asthmatic condition. Physicians have advised me that more frequent exercise is associated with reducing the rate and intensity of asthmatic attacks though other people argue to the contrary. I am therefore planning to increase my level of physical activity. This will also help me in more easily checking my weight that is slightly above the recommended value. A shift from social activities from drugs prone environment to physical activities that will serve both purposes has also been considered as a change in my lifestyle. This will help me in reducing alcohol consumption and exposure to the other drugs that trigger allergic reactions in my body. Being an informed consumer has equivalently been motivated by the analysis into my lifestyle. I plan to expand my knowledge on consumable commodities in order to identify those that could to trigger allergic reactions in my body as well as those that can help in controlling the problem. These are just but the main changes that are necessary in my lifestyle. The other elements of my lifestyle that are reviewed above are not perfect and most of them require consideration.

Benefits of adopting lifestyle changes

One of the critical changes that are necessary in my life is the association I have with alcohol. The enlisted change is as a result of advantages that are accrued due to abstinence from alcohol. Apart from the influences that alcohol has to my condition, there are other dangers that are associated with consumption of alcohol. One of the dangers that a person is exposed to as a result of alcohol consumption is chronic diseases. Alcohol has been associated with complications such as “liver cirrhosis, pancreatitis, various cancers, esophagus, high blood pressure and physical disorder” (CDC, 2010, p. 1). A person who is drunk is also at risks of injuries that result from impaired judgments and response to different situations. Cases of “motor vehicle traffic crashes, falls, drowning and burns” (CDC, 2010, p. 1) among others are accidents that are majorly caused by influence of drugs such as alcohol (CDC, 2010, p. 1). When consumed under high concentrations, alcohol can pose a hazard to the stomach lining thereby posing a threat to the absorption of food and other substances into the body system. This way, alcohol can impair functionality of body cells and organs. Alcohol also has an impact on kidneys which undertakes part of the substance excretion. Excessive consumption of alcohol has been identified as a threat to the kidneys which can damaged as a result. In the event of damaged kidneys, excretion of some body waste materials such as those eliminated and passed out in urine will be inefficient (Dunlap, n.d.).

There are also a number of dangers that alcohol consumption brings along but in a gradual rate in life. Its consumption can, for example, over time reduce an individual’s fertility or even render a person completely infertile. Increased chances of cancer and cases of heart and blood complications have also been associated with consumption of alcohol. These complications develop over time and have been realized even with people whose levels of consumption have been considered low (NHS, 2010).

Even though drinking is a social activity with friends, an adopted continuous trend of drinking with elements of addiction often leads to loss of social relations especially with individuals who consider alcohol taking to be immoral and shameful (Moelker, 2008). Other impacts of alcohol include “loss of appetite, spoilt facial features, reduced ability to think and speak properly” (Baqarah, 2001) and financial implications that could cause economic strains to an individual’s economic status following expenditures on alcohol (Qutub, 2010). Extreme consumption of very high concentrations of the alcohol can lead to a “coma” or even death (Dassa, 2010, p. 1). These disadvantages and risks that are derived from alcohol consumption therefore contribute to my need to change my lifestyle with respect to consumption of alcohol and the social set up that can influence me into alcohol.

Apart from the impacts of alcohol as a drive to changing my lifestyle, my health condition with respect to asthma is another factor that is going to affect the changes in my life. I have decided to commit to avoiding things and places that can increase may chances of getting asthmatic attacks. One of the factors that trigger the attacks is exposure to smokes especially those from cigarettes, and other narcotics. When inhaled either directly or indirectly, the respiratory system is triggered into experiencing the symptoms of asthma (Environmental, 2004). This is therefore also going to contribute to my social activities that include hanging out with guys in social places where drugs such as alcohol and narcotic smokes are present. The fact that asthmatic attacks are also triggered by temperature changes and exercises is also going to have an influence in my life style. I will have to change my schedules to avoid extreme temperatures that are identifiable with causing the attacks. I will also give much consideration to my involvement in exercise to determine whether my involvement in the activities have a positive effect or a negative effect in my attempt to manage the asthmatic complication (Family, 2011).

Since a healthy diet that is full of fresh fruits and vegetables is highlighted as a control measure to asthma (Asthma, 2011), my medical condition calls for a consideration to ensure that I increase my level of consumption of the foods. Though these food types have been part of my meals, I am going to start focusing more on them on the basis of controlling my asthmatic condition. I am also going to increase the amount of water that I consume on a daily basis as this has also been identified to help in controlling asthmatic symptoms (Asthma, 2011).

The review into my lifestyle which has given me an insight and more awareness over how I ought to manage my life for a better and more comfortable way of life and has also ignited my quest for more knowledge as a consumer. With my initiative to take a step in controlling the asthmatic conditions, I have decided to increase my knowledge on consumable goods that I take. I have realized the need to check into food stuffs for traces of elements that I am allergic to and avoid those that may trigger allergic reactions. This is because I have realized that most of the consumer goods in the market can not be one hundred percent trusted for the safety that they are claimed to have. Regulations that protect consumers over dangerous goods are for example characterized with elements of weaknesses that still subjects consumers to dangers. Though laws have been enacted for consumer protection such as “consumer safety act” and other regulations to ensure that producers and suppliers are more responsible over the safety of consumers, the law has not ensured total safety (Cartwright, 2001, p. 137). The laws do not impose a responsibility over the producers and distributers to ensure that the goods presented to consumers are totally safe (Cartwright, 2001, p. 137). Some of the weaknesses in consumer protection include the provisions that once a good has been in the market for specified time duration, the manufacturer relinquishes the liability over the defects or dangers that could result from the said commodity. Individuals can therefore take advantage to stop ensuring safety measures over their products after the expiry of such specified periods. Legislative provisions for reasonable safety also give the verdict that “goods do not have to be 100 % safe” (Bryan, 2009, p.67). Other exemptions to safety regulations such as cases of goods that are not sold in their original condition of production, and where suppliers pledge not to have been aware of the danger posed by their commodities are also threats to consumer safety (Bryan, 2009, p. 68).

Institutions that have been established to ensure safety of consumer goods, especially with regard to imports have been reported to lack proper mandate and capacity to adequately check on the infiltration of consumer market by harmful imported commodities. Though strategies are still being sought to enhance consumer safety, it is a fact that goods in the market are still not completely safe (Cackley, 2010). I have therefore purposed to improve on my knowledge concerning products that I consume and on substances that are associated with my allergies so that I can improve my health from attacks by the disease. This is because the regulatory measures seem to be too diverse and conservative to consider every plight of every consumer. Possibility of mistakes by health care professionals in terms of prescriptions and medications (Wisconsin, 2010) have also triggered my quest for more information about the kind of drugs that I may be subjected to as well as the medical centers from where I can seek medical attention. Since groups and people have also emerged who present fake products or just deceive potential consumers and steal from them (Federal, n.d.), I have also purposed to ensure that I have enough and proper information about any group or individual with whom I intend to make a major transaction.

The last significant area in which I plan to change my life is with relation to stress. Even though I am not always stressed to depression, even low levels of stress have negative impacts on an individual’s health. Some of the health risks that are caused by stress include “heart disease, digestion problems, sleep problems, skin conditions” among others (Smith, Segal & Segal, 2011, p. 1). Health complications that are related to stress are however numerous with reports indicating that there exist more that fifty complications that are related to stress (American, n.d.). White (2009) has however classified them into two categories: “chronic stress and constant stress” (White, 2009, p. 28). Chronic stress affects a person’s immune system while constant stress affects “mental and physical” well being (White, 2009, p. 28).

Strategies to adopting my lifestyle changes

The changes in my lifestyle that require critical strategies are about drinking, physical activities, and stress management and consumer information. In the case of the drinking habit, I have decided to consider the kind of friends that I have in relation to whether they will be willing to help me stop drinking or not. If they will not be helpful, then I will have to look for new friends (Burgess, 2006). Another strategy that I have developed in relation to drinking is about understanding alcohol in terms of what has been driving me into it as well as how else I can achieve the benefits that I derive from drinking (Miller & Munoz, 2005). With regard to improving my stress management skills, I plan to adopt techniques that will help me avoid and control stress. Strategies such as adopting a positive thinking will help my mind over negative occurrences in life. Other elements such as “attitude of gratitude, art of acceptance and power of positive affirmation” (Seaward, 2010, p.98) among others are also identified steps to controlling stress. This approach to develop a basis of handling stress is because stress is almost unavoidable in nature (Halan, 2005). I will also undertake measures to access more information that regards to health and environment since this information are available in resource centers and in the internet (Rees, 2003).

Conclusion

Though my lifestyle is satisfactory on a personal evaluation basis, a number of changes are necessary for improvements. I will need to make some improvements specifically targeting to improve my asthmatic condition. In order to manage well my asthmatic condition, I have purposed to stop taking alcohol, avoid at all circumstances exposing my body to smokes which I have known to trigger asthmatic condition in my life and to eating well. Other measures to be implemented include engaging more in physical exercises and acquiring more knowledge on the foodstuff that I take as well as the places that I visit for medication.

References

American. (n.d.). Effects of stress. Web.

Asthma. (2011). Top tips for getting your asthma under control. Web.

Baqarah, S. (2001). The harms of alcohol. Web.

Bryan, D. (2009). A Straightforward Guide to the Rights of the Consumer. Brighton, UK: Straightforward co Ltd

Burgess, W. (2006). The bipolar handbook: real-life questions with up-to-date answers. New York, NY: Penguin.

Cackley, A. (2010). Consumer Safety: Better Information and Planning Would Strengthen CPSCżs Oversight of Imported Products. Washington, DC: DIANE Publishing.

Cartwright, P. (2001). Consumer protection and the criminal law: law, theory, and policy in the UK. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.

CDC. (2010). Alcohol and public health. Web.

Dassa. (2010). Alcohol and its effects. Web.

Dunlap, M. (n.d.). Biological impacts of alcohol use: an overview. Web.

Environmental. (2004). Help your child gain control over asthma. Web.

Family. (2011). Asthma: learning to control your symptoms. Web.

Federal. (n.d.). How to be an informed consumer. Web.

Halan, Y. (2005). Managing Stress. Berkshire, UK: Sterling Publishers Pvt. Ltd

Miller, W & Munoz, R. (2005). Controlling your drinking: tools to make moderation work for you. New York, NY: Guilford Press

Moelker, W. (2008). Alcoholism stages and causes of alcoholism. Web.

NHS. (2010). The risk of drinking too much. Web.

Qutub, I. (2010). Alcohol and its impact on society. Web.

Rees, A. (2003). Consumer health information source book. Westport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group

Seaward, B. (2010). Essentials of Managing Stress. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning

Smith, M., Segal, R & Segal, J. (2011). Understanding stress. Web.

White, T. (2009). Perceptions and Effects of Stress in K-12 Education: A Large, South Central, Urban District Study. London, UK: Lulu.com

Wisconsin. (2010). Becoming an informed health care consumer. Web.

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