My 5 Daily Do's for a Happier You
Now before you read on, I want you to know that I am totally aware that many of us find it hard to do the stuff we’re told we should do to make us happier and healthier, because we just don’t seem to believe we have the time or feel the inclination to do so.
You know like do something exotic with a stewed prune for brekkie, bounce around the park at 5am like a deer and then immerse yourself in a deep tantric chant for 20 minutes before hopping into an ice shower. All done before you go to work or the kids get up.
For those that do this I salute you and am in genuine total awe, but honestly, that intensity really isn’t for me because I’m in the more ‘lazy arse’ demographic that prefers the quick and easy gratification that doesn’t hold me to rigorous routines and guilt attacks. I’m much more likely to do stuff if it doesn’t a} take much effort, b} take much time, c} take much will power and d} enjoy it and feel smug after.
Therefore, I thought it might be useful to share with you a few of the easiest practices I have managed to shoe horn into my day over the last few years and believe have seriously helped me feel better, look better and be more accepting of myself both physically and mentally.
For the most part, these subtle additions have come about by being surrounded with the company of professional women who use all manner of beautiful alternative and holistic practices to aide their successes and happiness in both business and life and of whom have taught and shared with me so much. You know who you are.
Being a member of a small mastermind group (a Napoleon Hill biggie) and/or a larger supportive network cannot be recommended enough.
Anything that helps to boost a better body image, improved self confidence and plant those positive seeds in our noggins, has to be a good idea and I am by no means a total ‘goody two shoes’ because I am well…human and I do have days of “meh", not feeling it today” and that’s ok too.
It’s not rocket science and I’m not reinventing the wheel here, but by trying to lever in any of the following basic 5 DO’s has worked for me and I do encourage my clients to try putting at least one DO into their day. There’s no set time to do them, no order in which you have to do them, no absolutes and more importantly, you don’t have to do them all daily. Practising just one thing is better than none at all.
The idea is just to get you started and cruise steadily up the slip road before you ease onto the happiness highway and I guarantee that if you have a go and keep it up, you’ll start to feel better about you, on the whole.
They reckon if you do something consecutively for about 7 days as a challenge, you’ll be more open to carrying on and even inclined to add more of the good stuff to form a little routine of your own 5 DO’S. Win, win.
So without further ado, I’ll show you my 5 DO'S and then I’ll share with you some of the other ideas and inspirations that I sometimes use if I want to change things around a bit. It’s a bit like choosing from a menu of inspiration which you can dip in daily to keep things interesting. and some of the stuff may need a Google, if you haven't heard of them before. How exciting, new things....
Try to encourage yourself to carry out ONE DO from each of the FIVE categories I have outlined MIND | MOVE | NOURISH | TREAT | LOVE every day.
How you do that and what you choose is up to you depending on time, mood, health and circumstance. If you want to start with just doing 1 DO a day, then that’s a good start too.
So here are My Current Happiness Dos:-
MIND –I DO
I listen to any 5-10 minute guided meditation on an app. I use Insight Timer and it can provide you with all manner of topics from gratitude to manifesting or from de-stressing to quietening anxiety and much more. I tend to go with what I feel I need or am drawn to that day.
If you’re new to meditating, no, you don’t have to sit cross legged and hum and no, it doesn’t always involve hugging crystals and burning incense, though I do because I’m a lover of the woo-woo stuff.
Meditation is just about learning to clear your mind of chatter and enjoy the quiet for a while. It also helps to de-stress, connect with yourself and also has the ability to gently set intentions and move inspirations to the forefront of your thoughts.
Personally, I love a bit of cosmic bonkers afterwards and often shuffle a deck of oracle cards (of which I have many) and select one to see what the day has to offer or indeed, what I can reflect on. Honestly, the synchronicity can be uncanny.
My good friend and skin and pro ageing expert Sughra Khaliq got me loving this particular deck but was more importantly instrumental in helping me realise the mahoosive benefits of practising a little daily routine or ritual to aide ones self care.
OTHER MIND DAILY DO'S TO TRY
Download an audible fiction book to escape into fantasy land or maybe try an inspiring podcast or TedTalk for the journey to work etc.
Try Barefoot Therapy (google it) by enjoying the feeling of grass between your toes and the soft soil below your feet for at least 5 minutes. If it’s good enough for Richard Gere in Pretty Woman, it’s good enough for me. Plus science has proven it to be beneficial for all sorts of things.
Try a spot of Ho’oponopono on yourself. I have used this in the past for times when I’m not feeling very body or self-confident. It's an Hawaiian prayer/affirmation and practice that clears negative thoughts and helps us forgive them and I first heard of it when listening to Dr Joe Vitale's audiobook The Attractor Factor and The Secret to Attracting Money.
Ever heard of EFT or Tapping? This also helps your mind to relax, relieve stressors and get you back on track quickly when you’re feeling overwhelmed by a series of finger tapping movements on various meridian points on your body. This was introduced to me by MetaWellBeing Founder and Expert Susan Gardner and works wonders. Here's one of her helpful Facebook videos
MOVE – I DO
Now, I do love a little run from time to time and have been known to trot out after tea (calm down I’m no marathon runner, more a Phoebe from Friends), but of late I’ve found that my time and circumstances have changed and are more inclined to do a super quick movement alternative.
Thanks to my mate Anna Morrone's recommendation (all round Health and Yoga guru) I now do a 7 minute session (yes that’s all) involving gentle exercises and light cardio in a morning, that’s it.
Not only do I feel healthier but I have also felt the snug fitting jeans loosen around my waist a little and my bra straps are definitely less submerged into the fleshy goodness of my back. Win win ladies.
I currently watch 7 minutes via YOUTUBE with the lovely Lucy Wyndham-Read who has a multitude of these awesome quick offerings to choose from. Take a look and see what you think.
There are many more other trainers and experts out there too, so find one you fancy and give them a go. If you haven’t got 7 minutes in your day, you’re really not trying.
OTHER MOVE DAILY DO'S TO TRY
A Yoga Sequence, Tai Chi or Pilates 5 minute YouTube session or book a local class.
Forest bathe (Shinrin-yoku) – walking in the woods is widely practised in Japan and also taps into your MIND DO too. Take your dog, or not depending on their relationship with squirrels. You can't beat a walk anyway.
Get to your local pool or grab a hula hoop for a quick toning session.
Dancing is always a laugh and so good for you too. Plug yourself in whilst vacuuming the stairs or blurt out the radio full pelt and throw some shapes.
NOURISH – I DO
Okay, so the whole healthy eating thing can be a bit of hard work to keep up and truly enjoy for the long term, which is why I like to give myself an easy goal. No fuss, no going without, just a little bit of a mindful eat from time to time.
Therefore, of late, I have introduced one goal. To reduce my caffeine intake by still enjoying a strong Italian in the morning ahem, but then when the time has come to enjoy another one (used to drink them all day), I’ve switched the second helping to a Turmeric Latte instead which I love.
If that sounds gross to you then totally understand and no doubt you could opt for an herbal tea or coconut water if you want to reduce your coffee too, they’re all lovely alternatives.
A NOURISH DO really boils down to what you think you need more of or less of in your eating and drinking habits, it doesn’t have to be all or nothing and you might find yourself choosing better foods without thinking about it. Think of ONE thing now that you could do with having more of or alternatively, less of.
A savvy swap goes a long way too. I’ve done it with bread, switched to sourdough to reduce my gluten bloat and I’ve also got some almond milk in my fridge for the ole turmeric latte. I’ve just continued to enjoy what I like but tried an alternative that helps me nourish better on the inside. What one thing could you swap or add?
You see, I’ve actually picked up two NOURISH DO’S or healthy habits without even trying and I do them at will.
OTHER NOURISH DAILY DO'S TO TRY
Many people carry a large bottle of water with them everywhere they go so they know they’ve drunk a good quota of water because they don’t feel they drink enough, You can even add lemon and mint for extra oooh envy from your friends.
Choose a supplement, whether a vitamin, mineral or superfood you feel you are lacking to add to your daily intake and always check with your doctor if you're pregnant or on other medication.
Aim to eat something green in colour every day. Naturally that is, as Walkers Salt and Vinegar doesn’t count. A handful of spinach in pasta, an avocado slice on a bacon sarnie or a granny smith, shoe horned in somewhere, all adds up when you do it as often as you can. It’s literally bite sized but beneficial.
Pop a few of your favourite herbal teabags in the handbag to enjoy a mini cleanse at will.
TREAT – I DO
Now this is not hard. Your one TREAT DO is to give yourself something you enjoy. Whether it’s peace and quiet, a face masque and a book, an early night, a glass of wine (lol), booking a massage/ treatment or mooch round the shops.
Treat yourself! It doesn’t have to cost the earth and it doesn’t have to be a big thing (though they are nice too).
The main aim here is to feel deserving because we sometimes place very little value on ourselves, either forgetting to make time or by putting our needs at the bottom of the pecking order ahead of family, friends and work commitments.
My daily TREAT DO is either, to delve into my lucky box of beauty goodies and pull out a luxurious potion, silky cream, hair masque or face pampering delight to treat myself with in the morning or of an evening.
Or, I choose my favourite dress, shoes, bag, top, jewellery or perfume to wear for the day. Anything that helps me feel sexier, more confident, professional and comfortable or whatever I feel is required to boost my mood and pep my swagger.
If you know me well you’ll be aware of my two deeply engraved mottos that I bore everyone I know with…. LOVE YOUR BODY, WEAR YOUR HAPPY and ROCK WHAT YOU’VE ALREADY GOT ladies.
OTHER TREAT DAILY DO'S TO TRY
Read an actual book or Kindle version in bed, on holiday or any bit of alone time you get. For all things body positive I currently recommend The Goddess Revolution by Mel Wells and Body Positive Power by Megan Jayne Crabbe.
Watch a feel good movie, whatever that looks like to you. For me, Tom Hardy ticks all the boxes. If I have olives and wine, that’s even more of a treat.
Buy yourself that thing you’ve had your eye on forever! Though don’t bankrupt yourself on an Island in the Maldives unless you’re loaded and no need to do this one everyday.
Don’t save things for BEST. That time or place you’re waiting for to happen, so you can wear it, use it or drink it, may never come. Enjoy the feeling today.
Go somewhere to enjoy something new or book something to better your life, your mind, your body, your health… anything that you will benefit from.
Lastly, we move onto the final DO category…
LOVE – I DO
Now don’t start wincing, you don’t have to shout your undying love from the shed roof (though that would be lovely) or adopt the mankiest looking dog in the pound (also nice) but you can do smaller but equally great things and they will matter.
Being there for you and for others is a beautiful thing and I encourage it daily for sure. Not being preachy, just being honest.
So, what do you do, I hear you ask? Well, I always give myself a hug for one. Can be a weird and creepy idea to the novice but it always make me feel better, especially if no one else is available to assist.
I also try to make a point of doing or saying something nice to somebody, whether it’s a genuine compliment, a giving of the ‘I love you’, a smile to a stranger, not honking the horn at some idiot and so on… The rest of the day I’m a total bitch… hahaha not really.
Again it’s all about being mindful and bringing your awareness to the good stuff that you do because that triggers your brain to start feeling it and that then encourages it to set new neural pathways to doing more and seeing more positivity.
OTHER LOVE DAILY DO'S TO TRY
Share an hour of your time with a bestie or someone you love over cake or coffee. Come on, that isn’t hard!
Join a group full of positive peeps and like-minded individuals and get chatting and supporting each other, whether that's online or in person.
Try a spot of mirror talk. Anytime, any place. Give yourself a grin or even better, a compliment.
Help someone or something with a problem or predicament. Give your advice or time freely when and where appropriate and when you feel genuinely helpful.
Connect with your spirituality or faith, however that looks to you and practice gratitude. My good friend and natural healer/ spiritual guru Mia Middleton encouraged me to mindfully think of 5 things in a morning that I was grateful for, no matter how small. You can't beat a warm fuzzy feeling to set you up for the day.
So what ONE DO can you purposely do every day?
You might find yourself ticking off the MIND, MOVE, NOURISH, TREAT and LOVE boxes in your head anyway by just going out and experiencing things and that’s fabulous, it will just show you how mindful you are becoming of enjoying your happy now.
Hope you enjoyed my share and got some ideas about how you could pop in new habits and DAILY DO’s. Start small with squeezing in tiny tweaks and go from there…. Let me know how you get on and feel free to share your DO’s or mini routines/rituals in the comments.
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