Give yourself a break

16 Aug

If you have some time to kill, how often do you turn to surfing the internet or watching mindless TV?  If you’re anything like most women I know, the answer will probably be “Way too often!” Instead of shopping, snacking, or checking your Facebook 13 trillion times to curb boredom, try to find a little constructive “me-time” instead so you can unwind while doing something good for yourself.

1. Take a utilitarian shower. (A bath is good, too, but if you don’t have the time, a shower can do in a pinch). Give your body a little TLC – Put on a teeth-whitening strip, and take this opportunity to slough off some yucky dead skin using an olive oil and sea salt scrub all over your body (you can use sugar, too, but you’ll have to make sure that you clean your shower properly afterwards or you’ll have an ant uprising! Yes, I speak from experience!) I like to keep a mixture of instant coffee, salt and olive oil in a pretty jar by my tub so I can scrub away whenever I get the chance. The coffee smells AMAZING and I’m sure all the good oils and antioxidants in it can’t hurt, either! Moisturize with your favorite lotion after you’re done. Feel free to stay in your bathrobe for as long as you can.

Power Shower!

2. Turn on some of your favorite music, and do your nails. If you can turn up the music without annoying your housemates/neighbors/cats, do it! Paint both hands and feet if you have the time, or just do the toes if you don’t (it’s a lot harder to chip your toes than the fingers). While waiting for your nails to dry, you can place some cucumbers on your eyelids and relax (teabags placed in the refrigerator will do in a pinch. Remember to stick your used teabags in a tupperware container the next time you make a cuppa! Just don’t forget to chuck them every week or so).

Get Ready for your Mani Pedi!

3. Go for a walk. Even a brisk ten-minute walk will get your blood pumping, and give you an endorphin boost. Try exploring a route you normally never take (make sure it’s safe, of course), or try out a new independent coffee shop in your neighborhood. Stop and smell the roses, literally, if you see any. Take this opportunity to work on your posture: keep your shoulders back, suck in your tummy, and walk straight (you’ll thank me when you’re eighty, I promise). Take your camera along if you can, and try to see your neighborhood (or wherever your walk takes you) with a tourist’s appreciative eyes.

I said *brisk* walk...

4. Read a short story. Everyone has time for a short story! I always like to keep a full-length novel by my bedside to read before bed, but I carry a book of short stories in my purse at all times. You never know how long you’ll be waiting for the metro, the dentist, or your friend at the bar. I highly recommend Miranda July, Jhumpa Lahiri, Margaret Atwood and Franz Kafka‘s collections of short stories (linked to my favorites).

I love this book!

5. Make something. Unleash your creative genius. Write a poem, bake a cake, knit, or try one of the many crafts on sites like If you’re not that way inclined, organize that ‘crazy drawer’ (you know you have one, the one with everything in it), sort out your old photos, or coordinate your wardrobe. You’ll feel better for having done it than you would watching reruns of I Love Lucy (I promise you).

Pac Man figures, anyone? That's okay, I don't know how to knit, either 🙂


One Response to “Give yourself a break”

  1. kirsty August 18, 2010 at 4:10 pm #

    great post we all need some down time xx

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