5 Outdated Wellness Rules You Need To Forget Right Now

Seriously — you do you.

Wellness has been at the center of conversations for what seems like eons, referencing everything from our sleep patterns to our diets to our after-work winding-down routines. And as we've all gotten older, the concept of "wellness" has adapted away from a strict set of rules that we all must subscribe to, and toward a more holistic, accepting practice that encourages you to do you. The time is not coming for us to have a different discussion around wellness. That time is here, and step one for fully enjoying it is to start having these open discussions in your own life.

Not sure where to start? Let's dive in by kicking off a conversation around a slew of the old “best practices” and “rules to live by” that need to be retired stat. Just because you read them in your teen magazine back in the early aughts doesn't mean they should still be cemented in your grown-up practice. That’s why Bustle linked up with Light + Fit to #addsomelight to the conversation around wellness.

Keep reading to discover some archaic wellness standards that we should’ve kicked to the curb a long time ago! (Hey, better late than never.)

We are not machines. We are not sports cars. We are living, breathing, human beings who define our likes and dislikes on our own terms. There's no need to demonize foods we enjoy, or to think of foods as purely good or bad. It's totally possible (and more than OK) to find joy in splitting a favorite pizza with a friend, or enjoying a glass of wine after a long day. You can find satisfaction in feeding your body a healthy dinner, or you can feel completely neutral about your eating habits altogether. Remember: There is no "right food" — there's only what's right for you.

Maintaining a sense of fluidity about your wellness journey and your goals will help you listen to your body. Not in the mood to go for a run? You don't have to punish yourself over it. Don't have time to go through your normal morning yoga flow? No sense in letting that stress you out. Wellness isn’t about always moving forward and making progress. Sometimes it’s about standing still, taking stock of where you are, and assessing your next steps. There’s nothing wrong with being a goal digger. In fact, it’s a good thing! But you should control your goals; don’t let them control you!

Snacking: You can. End of story.

But actually, maybe you associate the word "snack" with "bad" since it inherently means consuming extra food between meals, but that doesn't mean it's a negative thing. In fact, since everyone's bodies are so different, it's nearly impossible to find a firm recommendation on healthy snacking guidelines unless you're willing to work directly with a registered dietitian.

If you're feeling wary of your own attitude toward snacking, it's definitely worth looking for options that you'll not only get a nutritional benefit from, but will also just enjoy eating. Rely on seasonal produce for vitamins, yogurt like Light + Fit Original Greek Yogurt for protein and craveable flavors, or nuts for healthy fats and satisfying crunch. Or go ahead and eat that slice of cold pizza. No one is going to judge you.

False. Just false. Yes, productivity is a great thing, but it's not the thing. You have to allow yourself time to decompress, time to experience your emotions, time to be tired, time to embrace how you feel, time to sit on the couch and stare at the wall if that's what you're into. Also, let's remind ourselves: It’s OK to not be OK. Personal wellness isn’t something that has an end point, so there’s no use running as fast as you can in a race with no finish line. This will be a journey you’re on for life, so you don’t need to push yourself to do more, work harder, get back up and try again all the time. To borrow a sentiment from everyone's favorite pop diva, express yourself, however you choose to.

That's going to be a hard "no" from me. Wellness isn’t defined by a certain size or physical aesthetic. And on top of that, wellness includes so many different components like your emotional wellness, your physical wellness, your spiritual wellness, your sexual wellness… you get the picture. When all of these facets come clearly into focus, it's easier to understand that you deserve to work toward wellness by doing things that have absolutely nothing to do with weight loss or weight gain. Sleep in! Or get up early! Drink lots of water, or have a tequila shot! Train for a marathon, or marathon your favorite show for the fifth time! Whatever it is you choose to do, I hope it's beneficial on your personal journey to be well.

This post is sponsored by Light + Fit.