Sometimes it’s easy to feel stuck in a rut. It’s easy to get so caught up in the day to day and not have time to really nurture your life and improve areas that are causing you grief. For me, I felt a little stuck and instead of trying to make one big change and set myself up for failure, I decided to make a few smaller and more manageable changes that will add up to a big change overtime.
Maybe these will inspire you to tackle those things that have you stuck or to just make things even better than they already are!
Waking Up Earlier
I am not a morning person. I like the idea of getting up early and getting a head start on the day, but by no means is it easy for me. However, I started with fifteen minutes earlier than twenty and now I’m up to an hour. With this time I can read a couple chapters of a book I’m reading, actually have breakfast, give my dog and husband a proper cuddle before heading out the door and feel productive before I even get to the office. It helps me feel like I’ve done something for myself during the week and that’s a good feeling.
Cooking More Often
This blog has helped me to make time to cook more. It’s so much more rewarding for me to share the meals I make with friends and creating them for the blog helps me to do that so much more often! For example, Wednesday’s recipe that’s paired with the Foreign Film of the Week was made on Sunday and friends came over to enjoy it with me and it was very rewarding.
It’s difficult for me to disconnect, as it probably is for many people. With this blog and running Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms, I’m always uploading something. But, on Sundays I disconnect as much as possible. My husband and I put our phones in the bedroom and leave them to charge while we cook, read, watch House of Cards or go on a walk. It’s refreshing and a bit of a detox before the week begins.
Keeping My Home In Check
I have ways I do this, check out my post on ‘Tolerations’ for how I maintain my home on a seasonal basis. However, there are little things I do daily before things get out of control. Before bed I usually take five minutes to put things back in their place. Remotes by the television, blanket folded on the sofa, keys hung up by the door-so everything is where it should be and that makes for a cleaner home and a faster morning.
No Such Thing As Guilty-Pleasures
I don’t believe in guilty-pleasures. I believe in doing things I enjoy and not feeling guilty about it. If I want a hot fudge sundae at night, I’ll have it. If I want to binge-watch on Netflix, I’ll do it. I’m aware of over-indulgance but like the French and many Europeans feel, there’s no guilty-pleasure. Just do what you please, it’s your life and that’s that!
More Time For Keeping in Touch
I’m notoriously bad at keeping in touch. I miss my friends that live abroad dearly but with daily life and timezone differences, it can be tricky to find time to make that Skype connection. To combat this, I’ve dedicated two days every month where I email/text/Facetime/Skype with friends. It might be the same friends or different friends but this way I can send them an update and they will update me. My extremely talented and best friend since childhood, Jessica, is currently living in Tokyo and working as Ariel in the Little Mermaid. We stay in touch by sending selfies everyday (that we can) and it keeps us close. Sometime’s it’s the little things.
Dedicating Time For Appointments
Doctor’s appointments, going to the Dermatologist, to dropping off dry cleaning and getting my car washed. For me, it’s worth spending a Saturday running all the errands I have and getting them done at once, rather than spreading them out over time. Even taking the time to sit down and make your appointments for the upcoming months can make you feel better and set you up for success.
Many people feel they can multi-task well. I’m one of them. However, studies have shown it’s not really true. I am finding out that depending on the tasks at hand, something falls through the cracks. Especially social graces. Just because we’re waiting for a table at a restaurant does not mean we need to be entertained by our phones. Putting those away and focusing on the conversation is much more important. Finishing an email and then taking a call will lead to less mistakes and more productivity over time. Multi-tasking will never really end but I can choose how and when I do it. So far, I’ve felt more clear headed and efficient so I dare you to give it a go as well!
Being In Nature
Anyone that knows me, even a little bit, knows I do not enjoy nature. Camping? Forget it. Hiking? Never. But I do appreciate the outdoors and I find it can be very calming. See my post about the sea, for example. Although I do not have the sea here, I have the river. Though it is not the same, riding my bike or walking my dog Walter by the river puts me at ease. As does being on the roof of one the buildings in my neighborhood. Watching the sunset is almost like hitting the reset button. A glass of wine on a nice terrace also does the trick!
We all have them and I think we all need them. The one I have is on Sunday evenings. My nightly routine involves having a hot bath, washing my face and applying moisturizer, choosing my outfit and preparing my bag for the next day. When it’s time to settle into bed, I read a chapter or two of a book and turn out the light. I’ve tweaked it here and there but making time to prepare for the next day is a kind of meditation. I suggest taking a look at what you can do to make your morning or nightly rituals a bit smoother.
So, are there any little things you do to improve your daily life? Please share in the comments below or tag @wanderfullifestyle on Instagram or Twitter!
Hope you have a wonderful Monday!