1. Run a luxurious bath. Mix ¼ cup olive oil and ¼ cup dish soap in a little dish and add to your bath as it’s running. Easy, practically free, readily available, and will leave your skin oh so soft 😀 Optional: add ½ cup Epsom salt and/or a few drops of essential oils like lavender or peppermint.
2. Homemade body exfoliate. Cut a grapefruit, lemon, or orange in half. Sprinkle with white sugar. In the bathtub, rub the fruit sugar-side down over your skin, using a circular motion. The sugar acts to slough off dead skin cells, while the citrus fruit provides a delicious fragrance (unfortunately, you won’t absorb much goodness from the fruit through your skin – that’s what eating is for!)
3. Do-it-yourself mani-pedi. Soak those tired feet in a warm bucket of water with a little soap and some Epsom salts for about 10 min. Then use a towel to dry them off and gently push back your cuticles (this will also help remove some dead skin cells). File, clip, and finish off with a layer of nail polish. Looking for an eco-friendly alternative? Try Peacekeeper Cause-metics– a more natural nail lacquer that comes in many different colours 😀 http://www.iamapeacekeeper.com/department.aspx?DeptId=2&
4. Drink ice water with lemon slices. This refreshing and oh-so-easy beverage will quench your thirst and help detoxify your body from all the chemicals, additives, processed foods, caffeine, etc. that you may be ingesting.
5. Pretend you’re at a spa/yoga retreat for the day. Start your morning off with 30 min of yoga poses – try some sun salutations and other basic poses, taking your time to breathe and enjoy the movement. For breakfast have some fresh fruit, Greek yogurt, and a cup of green tea. Write in a journal. Listen to relaxing music. Meditate. Go for a long walk or run in the sunshine. For lunch, try a fresh spinach salad with a grilled chicken breast, veggies, olive oil & balsamic vinegrette. Do more yoga. Have a nap. Read. Explore nature. For supper, have a serving of quinoa with walnut crusted salmon and grilled veggies. Relax. Go to bed early.
6. Blow dry your hair or style it differently. Take that extra 5-10 minutes to give your hair that extra oomph – chances are you will feel a surge of confidence and an extra zip in your step all day long.
7. Do something selfless. It is easy to get self-involved and focus exclusively on what we have or don’t have. Instead, try doing something that benefits someone else, not because you have to or for recognition or for something to put on your resume, but simply because you want to. Buy a coworker a coffee, donate stuff you don’t use to Goodwill, or volunteer for a cause you believe in. Be more, want less.
8. Crank it up and have a dance party. Whether you are by yourself or in the middle of a crowd, music has the power to change you, inspire you, unlift you. I’ll never forget taking my little cousins out for lunch one day – the three of us had a dance party in the lobby of Jack Astor’s while waiting to be seated – amazing 😀
9. Express yourself. Not everyone is artistic but everyone has something to say. Get those creative juices flowing and write, draw, paint, sing, or even build something. It doesn’t have to be great and you don’t even have to show anyone. Get some playdoe and make a sculpture – then destroy it if you want. It’s about the process, not just the end-product.
10. Turn off all your electronics and spend quality time with yourself and people you love. Remember the days of good conversations, hilarious stories that had you rolling on the floor in tears of laughter, not being interrupted by random ringtones, and having eye contact? I have nothing against technology, but there is something to be said about being present and truly connecting with each other.
11. Stop reading magazines. Women’s magazines (and increasingly men’s too) are full of fictional messages that tell us we are not good enough, not thin enough, not pretty enough, and that if we buy a bunch of stuff we will transform ourselves into beautiful perfect people. I’d also like to point out that when you buy magazines you are paying to be advertised to and read information that is usually made up. When it comes to fitness magazines, don’t follow an exercise and nutrition plan created by some journalist who doesn’t know a fast-twitch fibre from a slow one. Get yourself a university library card and check out some actual knowledge or find a real expert who knows what they are talking about and stays up to date.
You are and have everything that you will ever need 😀 Never forget the tremendous power you have to create the life you want.