1. Getting lost in a good book
For many, getting lost in a great book is a sheer indulgence. But it shouldn’t be. There’s many health and wellbeing benefits, including: mental stimulation, stress reduction, knowledge and vocabulary expansion, improved memory, stronger analytical thinking skills, improved focus and concentration and even better writing skills. And they are going to come in handy for this…
2. Creating a journal
Now there’s actually loads of ways to journal, from recording dreams to jotting down random thoughts or creative ideas, plans for the future or creating a gratitude journal. According to the University of Rochester Medical Centre, “keeping a journal helps you create order when your world feels like it’s in chaos. You get to know yourself by revealing your most private fears, thoughts, and feelings.”
You can literally write about anything – and keep it to yourself. Set aside even a few minutes each day. “Look at your writing time as personal relaxation time. It's a time when you can de-stress and wind down. Write in a place that's relaxing and soothing, maybe with a cup of tea. Look forward to your journaling time. And know that you're doing something good for your mind and body.”
Can you remember the last time you applied a face mask, or soaked in the bath with candles and ambient music? Or gave yourself a pedicure?
Less than 20 per cent of Australian women find time for themselves each day, according to the Jean Hailes Women's Health Survey. In fact, the survey revealed more than a quarter of the 'sandwich generation' of women — those juggling the demands of career, kids and ageing parents — aren't even getting ‘me time’ once a month. Now, no one is suggesting that working from home and juggling kids and a keyboard is easy, but being forced to stay home – and bypassing an entire extracurricular activity schedule – will surely free up some time.
Use this time for you.
Pop on a hair treatment, fake tan your legs, exfoliate those dry patches that have been bothering you for months, open that fragrant body moisturiser and treat yourself. "Self-care is not selfish," says Janet Michelmore, executive director at Jean Hailes. "Our aim is for everybody to be aware that looking after yourself is important. Even one small change can have huge rewards.”
4. Reconfiguring your furniture
They say a change is as good as a holiday, so get changing… the furniture around, that is! Not only will reconfiguring your furniture layout create a whole new vibe, but it might even lead to a better life. According to Feng Shui, clearing clutter, minimising furniture and optimising your living room layout will allow positive energy to flow.
5. Learning to cook that favourite meal
Go on, have a crack at that nut slice, polenta or chocolate soufflé! Learning a new skill that is creative, fun and something you’ve always wanted to do is not only challenging, but personally rewarding. And as a bonus, ‘learning new things’ creates new brain pathways and connections. Get smarter and creative!