Monday, 21 September 2015

How I Relax & Recharge

#ShareYourSerenity | Me-Time Rituals: How I Relax & Recharge
A while ago I posted about weekend activities that are good for the soul, but it's important to find time for yourself throughout the week, too. In fact, finding ways to recuperate and relax has become more important than ever for me recently; I have to be seriously careful I find the right balance between productivity and relaxation, because if I get it wrong, I can get pretty down pretty quickly and can start to spiral.

Portmeirion Village's #ShareYourSerenity campaign is all about the ways we find peace, "whether it's somewhere you go, something you do or a state of mind", and some of the entries are so lovely to read I couldn't not add my own to the mix. So, starting from top left, here's a little bit about my favourite wellbeing-focused rituals if I'm in need of a pick-me-up:

001. Take a time out

A few months ago I blogged about coping with down days, and the first point in that post relates to the first point here: it's so important, every once in a while, to lay low and catch your (mental) breath.

Technically I was meant to include a photo to illustrate relaxing in bed in my comfy pants, reading blogs or a book or having a Netflix binge and generally taking a time out from the rest of life. And then I saw this photo and couldn't not include it, because Jaz makes me so incredibly happy. Either way, sometimes all I need is to remove myself from all of my responsibilities, work, blog and otherwise, and just... be. With or without cat.

002. Spring clean and organise

Weirdly, or perhaps not weirdly at all, there's a direct correlation between my moods and the state of my bedroom. Right now it's a bit of a mess, to say the least, and all of the clutter is making me feel so much worse. I need to get my hands on this The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying book everyone's raving about, I think.

When everything gets too much and I can feel all my stresses piling up and weighing me down, I find a good place to start is to tidy a little, or organise something. Making a list of things I need to do and crossing a few off can do me the world of good, even small, Life Admin type things; every little helps when it comes to ridding yourself of stress.

003. Get some fresh air

I was raised as a bit of a mountain goat, constantly going on hiking trips to the Lake District and clambering up various hills. Although I do it no way near enough anymore, there's still nothing that makes me feel more at peace than getting out into the countryside, no matter where I go or how strenuous the activity. As much as I love to snuggle up indoors, sometimes all I need is to close my laptop and get some fresh air (or as my mum would say, "to feel the wind in my gills") - I really think it's the best thing for the soul.

I'm working from home at the moment, so am spending a lot of time cooped up inside. I'm adjusting to life without an office full of friends to keep me uplifted, or without anything to leave the house for if I don't purposefully schedule it into my day. All this cabin fever and being alone is certainly taking it's toll on my mood; last week was a pretty low week, so a three-hour wander around the Sandstone Trail yesterday (pictured) was just what the doctor ordered.

004. Pamper myself

An obvious one, but there really is nothing better than treating yourself to a bath and some pampering to lift your mood and get you feeling a bit more relaxed, is there? For the perfect pamper sesh, I tend to light some candles, slap on a face mask like my fave Aesop Parsley Seed (review here), get a big glass of iced water and jump into a hot, bubbly bath.

I'm yet to invest in one of those book stands for the bath, so I tend to watch a few episodes of something on my MacBook instead. Currently, I'm loving True Detective, GBBO and First Dates (not ashamed), but everyone's going on about Hunted at the moment so I think I'll give that a go soon.


This post was written as part of the beautiful Portmeirion Village's #ShareYourSerenity competition, which closes tonight at midnight.

What are your favourite ways to relax and recharge?

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