The pursuit of wellness starts bright and early every day for Karah Thompson.

“My daily morning routines have helped me focus on my wellness,” said Karah Thompson, agile project manager at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska (BCBSNE). “I wake up earlier than I did before we were going into the office, and I journal, write my daily gratitude’s, workout and then relax with a cup of coffee before I have any distractions or begin work.”

Outside of her day-to-day wellness, she likes to challenge herself in the long term.

“Every month I come up with three new goals to focus on,” said Thompson. “It really helps to keep me motivated, along with pushing myself to continue to grow and change.”

She aims to create goals in three different sectors of her life: personal, physical and professional.

“Wellness is not only about the physical aspect,” she said. “It’s a holistic approach and your overall state of existence. Outside of the monthly goals, I also have goals to read one new book every month and close all three rings on my Apple Watch [which track activity of the wearer] every day for 2021.”

As a part of her approach, she has created a focus on bettering her relationship with food.

“My food journey has changed dramatically over the last year,” said Thompson. “I used to be a yo-yo dieter. Once I stopped looking for diets to help me and realized I can figure out what my body needs and when, that is when everything looked up for me. I only eat when I am hungry instead of looking for something to fill time or boredom, I don’t eat distracted and I am more in tune with what my body wants and needs depending on the day.”

She has also been able to make the change to cooking fresh meals since working from home and always makes sure to have a rotation of recipes to avoid boredom with meal choices.

Working from home during the pandemic hasn’t just impacted the way she eats.

“Putting my wellness first since we moved to working from home has completely changed my life,” Thompson said. “I have lost 65 pounds since April 2020. The gyms were closed for a while, so I picked up walking outside often. I would walk 4 miles a day and listen to podcasts. I also joined beach body workouts last year and I love the variety and options to stay home and workout.”

She was able to take these difficult times and create something positive for herself and hopes others can feel empowered to do the same.

“I would like everyone working on their wellness to know that it is never too late to put yourself first,” said Thompson. “Create a routine that works for you and give yourself the time you need to be better for yourself and others, however that looks for you.”

To read more stories like this one, visit Health and Wellness.

*Wise & Well is a monthly wellness series highlighting BCBSNE employees and their dedication to health and wellness.