Please be aware that this post sounds like I don’t ever just sit, scroll Instagram and watch Gilmore Girls which I definitely do! But recently, when I have a bit of time free, I’ve started to spend it a bit more wisely than I previously would.

Of course there are times when I just lay on the bed and watch my Youtube subscription feed, but 80% of the time, I try to put my energy to better use and enjoy some of the hobbies I’ve picked up over the last couple of months.

So, what do I do?

Get out for a walk

I’ve been on a mission to up my steps a bit more recently, and that combined with my new love of podcasts means that when I can fit it in, I’m always taking the dog outside or just nipping for a walk to the park solo.

I love the fact that I’m moving my body more, which feels fab, plus I always love getting fresh air! Promise you it feels better than just sitting on the sofa, although sometimes that feels amazing too.

Craft and paint

I’ve really picked up the art bug lately and I’m just loving how creative and inspired it makes me feel.

On an evening whenever I’m watching TV with the family, I’m usually working on my cross-stitch, and if I have a spare hour in the afternoon I’ve really been enjoying painting too!
Bake

I’ve yet to master cooking, but I’ve been enjoying baking so much these days that I just have to mention it.

I tend to go for healthier versions of my favourite sweet treats and I swear by Livia’s Kitchen recipes, although being 100% transparent here by telling you that not all bakes go that well!

Baking for me is starting to feel very theraputic and rewarding, and that combined with the fact that I then have snacks for the week is perfect.

 

How do you spend your free time more meaningful? I would love for some more tips 🙂

 

Silence is weird, isn’t it? I know that I for once rarely have any in my life. And when it usually appears, I urge to put something on to fill it.

Podcasts, Youtube, Instagram stories, not to mention Netflix and the TV are all a touch away, and we rely on them to occupy our brains when we have time to rest. When the house is quiet.

It’s extremely rare to ever just sit. And notice.

And being honest, for me, it is sometimes a little un-nerving too. Sitting in silence makes us realise how fast paced our minds are, and it warrants us to take a step back from the ordinary. It creates space between ‘then’ and this present moment. It makes me for one realise how we get swept up in the day to day. The goals, the jobs, and the chores we ‘have’ to get done.

If you have any worries or issues hounding you, the done thing is to not think about them, and distract ourselves until they magically disappear. Which of course, most of the time doesn’t happen.

Now I’m not saying sit and over-think them for the next half an hour, because that isn’t helpful either, but giving yourself a bit of peace and quiet to ponder for a few minutes may clear some things up and bring answers to a much needed dilemma.

Even if you just take a moment to sit and appreciate the life you’re living, and the things you have.

A moment of gratitude is not a moment wasted.

 

A few ways to make friends with *silence*:

  • Spend the first five minutes you get home without reaching for your phone or turning the TV on. Let this be a time to digest your day, and a moment where you can unwind into your evening.
  • Make a silence ritual. Simple things such as a cup of tea, watering the plants or doing the wash-up could be done silent, and can be a cue to incorporate more mindfulness into your life.
  • Enjoy it with other people. One of my favourite parts of my relationship is where we can hang out, and there is no need to fill the ‘silence gap’. Sitting in each other’s company and being totally okay with being quiet is so refreshing.

 

Do you ever have silence?

 

Living more mindfully is something I strive to do every day. Granted, it doesn’t all work out like that but the intention is always there. I know I’m the best version of myself when I’m being mindful and balanced, so it’s a big priority. Of course it is totally unique to every individual, but here’s how I try to do it…

 

COUNTING THE LITTLE THINGS

Ahhh. I always say the little things are what I live for and it’s true. It’s like it’s almost in my DNA to look for everyday moments of magic. I remember getting so excited about things that were so simple when I was little, and I’m glad I can still feel like that now. Whether that’s a cup of tea in one of my favourite mugs, or painting my nails with a fresh coat, they brighten up the day. It also helps me live in the moment, I’m not thinking about future worries or past memories, I’m thinking about RIGHT NOW.

KNOW WHAT WORKS FOR YOU

For me personally, I have to be strict with myself on knowing my boundaries. I can easily get carried away and that enthusiasm is great, but realistically I know if I’ve been out all day, I need a night at home and not go somewhere else again, that’s just how I re-set. Being mindful means taking care of your mental health and looking after YOU.

FIND A MINDFUL ACTIVITY- IT DOESNT *HAVE* TO BE MEDITATION IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT.

There’s quite a few things I enjoy that I like to turn into mindful events, such as colouring, walking the dog outside, and baking. I’m trying to incorporate new activities into my daily routine, and I’m loving new hobbies such as cross-stitching too.

Is being more mindful something that you’re thinking about?

 

I wrote a little while ago about why I meditate, but in today’s post I’m telling you why YOU should. I try to not be preachy and the notion of telling anyone they ‘have’ to do something makes me feel a bit icky inside, so take all of this with a pinch of salt if it isn’t your jam. If you’re interested, hear me out, you might be swayed…

 

BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE TIME

I’m sorry but I don’t think anyone can use this excuse for something that is going to take 10 MINUTES out of their day. Granted I’m not a mum or a business owner myself, but we’ve all got 10 minutes to be found somewhere right? Even if you spend 10 minutes less scrolling on your phone, using that time for meditation will honestly, change the game for you. Have a little think about where you could grab a few moments on your own and begin with a few days a week. If you don’t have 10 minutes, anything is better than nothing! Even a few mindful breaths is a great habit to start.

BECAUSE IT WILL KEEP YOU BALANCED

I can probably guarantee that if you make meditation a regular practice in your daily life, you will without a doubt feel better because of it. You’ll sleep better, feel more in control of your life, be a kinder person. I’m basically saying it’s like pure magic (please try not to eye-roll at me)

For me, it makes me feel happier on bad day and like I can have a mini fresh start whenever I need to. The way I describe how I feel after I’ve meditated is the feeling of jumping into a cool pool on holiday when you’re too hot. Instant relief.

BECAUSE DOING SOMETHING FOR YOURSELF IS NECESSARY

We are surronded by people. It’s not often that we are actually alone, and having something that you can look forward to and work on for yourself, by yourself, is a great feeling. Knowing that you don’t have to depend on anyone to keep it up with you, and you are the sole person in charge always makes me feel motivated and inspired.

Have I tempted you yet?

 

flower in hand

You know those days when you’ve been sat refreshing Twitter and Instagram ALL day, usually without even realising it? Or it could be you’re struggling with something and engaging/interacting with others is something you just purely do not have the energy for at the moment? Heres what I do when it happens to me…

 

TAKE TIME OUT

It’s an obvious one, but the first thing I do is put the bloody phone down. Even better, turn it off. Even if it’s just for the majority of the evening, you need to take a step back. I know when I feel like this I get really bad headaches just from staring at a screen for so long, so maybe try un-winding with a hot bath and enjoying the company of your partner or family for the rest of the day. After some self-care you’ll feel ready to get back online again and see what the Blogosphere is up to.

CURATE YOUR FEED

Now you’ve recovered from the overwhelm but still feeling a little ‘ugh’, you need to start thinking about the people you currently follow. Are they positive influences in your feed or do their pictures trigger something in you? Everyone’s content changes and I don’t think there is anything wrong with unfollowing if you can’t relate to them anymore. If this feels too harsh, you could always send them a kind message explaining where you’re at currently, and that you mean no harm.

Everyone has the control over what THEY want to see. Make sure it’s inspiring, not discouraging.

ESTABLISH BOUNDARIES

The final thing I would advise after feeling social media overwhelm, is to establish boundaries. This can mean choosing a specific time that you allocate only to engaging with others, and then logging off and getting on with the rest of your day. I know that I for one have to be quiet strict with myself sometimes so I don’t fall down the hole again, so I try to not scroll before bed and read a book, and will sometimes leave my phone at home if I’m going out for a few hours so I’m not distracted by it.

At the end of the day I think social media is a luxury for us all, and it should add to our lives and enhance it, not subtract and make us feel bad, tired or drained.

You are in charge.

Do you ever feel social media overwhelm?