Protecting our own well-being in this crazy world we live in isn’t always easy, but there are things we can do to give ourselves a feel-good boost.
If you can possibly get a little – or a lot – of fresh air every day, it will help blow away the cobwebs and present a chance to be grateful for our natural world – and the natural world could really do with some gratitude and positive energy right now.
If you have a garden, pop out and engage your five senses for a few moments.
- Look at the plants, the shape and design of your outside space and maybe plan to grow new plants or build a rockery.
- Listen to the music of nature. If you live on a busy road (as I do) appreciate the seconds of silence between passing cars and lorries.
- Smell the plants and, if you have a few herbs, plan on putting some in tonight’s dinner
- Get in touch with textures – the soft petals or leaves, the hard rock etc;
- And if at all possible, taste a late fruiting raspberry or a leaf from a lemon verbena plant
If you haven’t any outdoor space, it’s possible your senses could be just as stimulated in the park or on a woodland walk perhaps.
And when it’s just impossible to get outdoors because of the weather or physical issues, plan to spend some time indoors…
Aside from decluttering, cleaning like a crazy person and cooking fabulous meals for the family, there are plenty of projects that can inspire and protect your mental well-being as well as your physical state.
Have you been working 9-5 for years and rewarded yourself with weekends of entertaining or simply slobbing out in front of Netflix? Staying home all week can really mess with your mental well-being but it’s time to think outside the 9-5 box. Is there a hobby or a course you’ve wanted to undertake for ages but never found the time or energy for?
Maybe you promised yourself a yoga course but now all the gyms are closed? Not a problem. There are lots of yoga and exercise teachers online who’ve stepped up to the technology challenge and provide online classes. Not as interactive as a local class, but certainly the next best thing. My youngest daughter has spent many years learning healing techniques and is a qualified yoga teacher – I missed her during those months she spent in India and now she’s based in France we have the lockdown barrier to contend with….
Anyway, get online and support a small business near you by taking up a yoga or exercise course. Check out Lucy Lou Yoga and see what you could be doing to protect your well-being – Lucy is passionate about helping people heal and regularly posts some helpful tips.
And apart from exercise and physical stuff, there are probably hundreds of new skills you could learn. Learning sharpens the mind and helps keep you on a positive track. Doing nothing tends to drag us down in despair especially at this time when we can feel so powerless. I recently taught myself to crochet – thanks to youtube! – and have been creating all sorts of weird and wonderful things – some good enough for my Etsy shop, others good enough to be unraveled! So how about learning to:
-Play an instrument – is there a guitar lurking in the attic you’ve been meaning to play with? Or even a recorder (school memories here) can inspire you to make music.
-Or learn a needlecraft skill – knitting, dressmaking, crocheting, embroidery etc; Make a gift for a family member or friend. A homemade gift is always appreciated and covers so many areas of our well-being – inspiration, creativity, motivation, gratitude etc;
-Try out some traditional skills like basket-making, wood carving or macrame or get really super good at creating nourishing healthy meals.
-Can you draw? Create greetings cards or sketch portraits of family members or pets. Draw and paint with the kids. Hang up colourful ‘masterpieces’ around the house to brighten everyone’s day. I always thought I couldn’t draw, then I watched a Ted talk and created some fun cartoon pictures.
-Are you a budding writer? Give yourself some time to get your thoughts down. This could be journaling, writing poetry, creating beautiful words for your greetings cards or get really serious and write that book!
I’m going to stop here because I can ramble on for hours about this stuff. Protecting your well-being is something I’ve always been passionate about, although I can admit that I haven’t always been nice to me… working on it though!
Before I sign off, there is another aspect to all this that may inspire you further.
After I’d practiced loads, my crochet gifts were good enough to share and I put them in my Etsy shop alongside the healthy living downloads and knitting patterns.
Turning your hobby into a business is possible and may help financially as well as mentally and physically. I’m not an expert in marketing but if you can get good at that, there’s no reason you couldn’t turn your hobby into a thriving business and ditch the 9-5 altogether 🙂
Stay safe and protect your well-being
P.S. Just a quick note here – Etsy is huge and algorithm learning seems to be a big part of making a success of your shop. Have a look at local platforms first. Another of my enterprising daughters has just launched a platform for UK sellers – Jodie at Home of The Mall – UK only because they want to be able to showcase the delightful products their members create without getting lost in the millions of products on Etsy. Next thing on my to-do list!