We all love city life – the vibrant energy, endless possibilities, and excitement; but it can also be hectic.
Living in the city can be exciting, but on the other hand, there are some downsides; heavy traffic, smoke from cars and generators, overcrowding, refrigerated foods, canned products, noise pollution, and readymade condiments, we don’t have it easy at all. Indeed, the hustle and bustle of city life eventually take a toll on our physical and mental well-being.
The truth is this: city life can propel the body into a stressful state, known as the fight-or-flight response. This makes us more vulnerable to mental health concerns such as depression, anxiety, etc.
If you live in large cities like Port Harcourt or Lagos, where everyone is always on the move, sitting in traffic for hours is normal for these people. That is not even where it starts-the start is waking up early to have an early start.
So, you wake up early in order to get to your destination on time. Whether you board a public bus or in your private vehicle, all of you will meet in the same traffic. Because everyone is trying to outrun every other person, the ride isn’t smooth and we are unable to catch up on sleep lost.
We are inanimate most of the time at work, and let’s not forget, we work with technology! We eat junk meals most of the time and prefer readymade condiments—they are either canned, packaged or refrigerated. Even when we say, “Let’s cook,” the vegetables must be chopped and the necessary vitamins washed out with dirt. And then, there are all those chemicals that the female gender especially exposes themselves to, to hide the obvious stress of city life.
In the middle of all this, we barely have time to socialize and keep physically healthy and mentally sane because our bosses can put a call through or send a WhatsApp message anytime. Do I even need to remind us that remote work means you have to be available 24/7? Okay, now you know! And we have customers who feel we sleep and wake up because of them.
It’s little wonder that we have so many ailments looking for someone to devour.
Here’s how to help prevent city life from harming your mental and physical well-being.
1. Find time for nature: It is not every day that you sit and breathe conditioned air. Enjoy the great outdoors; walk around often to increase your metabolism.
2. Reduce the use of technology: Yes, it makes life easier, but technology also has its negative effects.
3. Ditch the canned, the preserved, and the refrigirated: Buy them fresh more often than you pick off the shelf. Opt for unprepared vegetables so you can clean them properly and reserve some of the natural nutrients.
4. Walk short distances, but not every time you jump inside the car or order a ride. Make it a habit to walk short distances sometimes.
We chose city life; city life did not choose us. It is our responsibility not to allow the city to swallow us. We have to find a balance.