We have a month or so left of winter, and the wattles and waxes are bursting into beautiful bloom. If you’ve been hibernating in this wet July, that’s great. It’s important to retreat from the world for a while, especially in a time where there is so much bad news and negative media.
Take breaks from social media, daily news and people or places that cause you stress, and make those breaks count: get out in nature, read a book for fun, do something creative or relaxing. Gentle stretching is a nice way to keep the body moving without feeling like you have to crawl out of your shell.
But we can’t hibernate forever! If you’re having trouble finding space in the world, here are some tips:
- Make sure something in your social media feed makes you smile. Follow some pages or join some groups that share funny or positive things on a regular basis. Artist pages, comic or humour-based pages, gardening or nature groups – whatever lifts your heart!
- Engage with at least as much positive news as negative. Good things happen every day, so however it is you find your news, make sure you include some producers who talk about good things happening. If you read the paper, look for those little articles talking about local events and arts and small businesses. They might not have sensational headlines, but they’re the real threads in our communities.
- Find one breathing practice that works for you. It could be simple diaphragmatic breathing, or it could be a more complex practice like alternate nostril breathing or sama vritti. Put a note on your bathroom mirror or next to your computer screen reminding you to do it, and every time your eyes stray to that note, stop and breathe for a minute.
- If you listen to music at work or home, make some playlists and every ten or twenty songs or so (depending on how long they are), put a track in that makes you tap your foot or sway to the music. When that song comes on, that’s your cue to get up from your desk and dance or shake it out 🙂 Or, if you’re a bit reserved for jigging around the office, take a five-minute stretch break.
- Put a picture of a tree or nature scene somewhere in your workspace. Trees have a remarkable effect on our brains, and just looking at a picture of one can have a positive effect!
What are your favourite ways to keep yourself uplifted?