Although it’s Springtime or Autumn if you live down under, and traditionally a time when we are supposed to feel positive and rejuvenated; this year is really an odd one. I have lost count of the number of friends and acquaintances who are simply not feeling the vibe or are struggling through a bad or even a pretty shit period in their lives. I look back at myself this time last year and remember how life felt like it was unravelling all around me at times and wish that someone, anyone could have said or done the right thing to help me through it. So if you are not feeling 100% today or just don’t feel good about yourself generally here are a few things you might consider doing to make life a little more positive:
1. Eat properly for a start off
I don’t mean that in some naggy eat your greens and cut out the fat way. All I am saying is try to eat a good diet, a balanced diet and most important of all have a decent breakfast. The day is built on the first meal of the day so make sure it is something good like muesli and yoghurt, with fruit and perhaps an egg or a decent shake instead of your usual cup of coffee with a piece of toast and perhaps followed by a cigarette!
2. A confidence boost.
Instead of worrying about things to come in the next week or so, look at what you achieved last week/month, and any problems you may have overcome. Be it a row with your partner or your boss that you managed to get over, maybe something annoying or a lingering worry that you finally managed to move on from. Perhaps you finally reached some goal that has taken you a while to achieve. I promise you, if you look hard enough, there is always something that you can be proud of.
3. Get some quality You time.
You don’t have to spend every night with your loved one. Set aside an evening here and there where you can do what you want to do. Do something you don’t need the consensus or the agreement of others before you do it. Also think about treating yourself to a duvet day every once in a while, so you can stay in bed, watch a movie or listen to some music. Do whatever it takes for you to completely relax. You will be surprised just how much this re-charges your battery before normal life takes over once more.
4. Spend wisely.
Try not to blow all your wages in the first week and that way you’ll have a little left over to do something for you. Treat yourself to a massage, a new haircut or maybe go out for a meal with friends and socialise. Surveys have shown that people who spend their money on socialising with friends or their partner, do not regret wasting that money as they have got an experience out of it. Also try not to waste it all on clothes you don’t really need – if this is you, could there be something missing from your life that helps you keep those expensive shops in healthy profits?
5. Plan a break or a holiday.
We all need a break. Even if it’s just a long weekend away. A change of scenery gives you a well deserved boost, time to relax and something to look forward to. So get searching for those cheap online deals!
6. Keep tidy.
Yes, I know more than most how hard it can be to find the time to keep your home tidy. But making your bed every morning, cleaning the dishes and picking up your socks from the middle of the floor, will save time when you get in from work, so you can just relax without wasting your evening picking up clutter or feeling guilty about it. Also think about clearing out your wardrobes once in a while – do you really need all these clothes – chances are if you have not worn something in a year you probably won’t again. Get rid of it or better still give it to a Charity shop. Having control of these little things in our lives, helps you feel much more in charge generally.
7. Be kind to a stranger.
Is there someone standing on the bus or train because there are no seats left? Offer them yours! Are there homeless people that you walk past every day, without giving them a second look? Give them your spare change, or if that’s beyond your principles buy them a coffee or a sandwich! Most people will appreciate your generosity and it will put a smile on your face as well as theirs.
8. Put your health first.
Every now and then, swap that chocolate bar for a piece of fruit, that glass of coke for water or that glass of wine for a spritzer. Also if you drink a little too much, try knocking off a beer or two from you nightly consumption. Not only will you feel more energy and see things like an improved complexion in your face, but you will probably be able to shift those stubborn couple of kilo’s you have struggled for a while to lose.
9. Try a gym or go for a jog one evening.
It’s amazing how a workout or just going for a run can put you in such a good mood. Yes it’s hard if you have never done it before, but start slowly and push yourself, and you may come back aching, but feeling like you have done something worthwhile. Then you can sit back and relax when you get home and feel good about yourself.
10. Get moving.
If the gym or jogging is a step too far try giving yourself a good shake once in a while. When we are stressed out, the neurones in our brain are messed up, but if you can shake yourself about just a bit, it will trigger a relaxation response. So dance around to your favourite song! Bounce around, and shake your arms and legs! I promise you it will have a positive impact!
11. Get some fresh air.
Get out there and take in the colours and smells of the season – be honest: when was the last time you stopped and smelt a flower or even appreciated a sunset? Go for a walk, it doesn’t have to be long one as getting just 20 minutes of fresh air will help to clear your mind.
12. Keep a diary/ journal.
I learnt a long time ago that many of us are more prone to remember negative things more than the positive ones. It is such a shame. However, now I keep a journal I almost always remember and record the good things that sometimes get lost or forgotten with the passage of time. This will help you remember these times so when you are feeling down you can look back through it and see that things are often only temporarily bad and that there really have been many happy periods in your life.