Life takes its toll on all of us, and it’s tempting to give ourselves an expensive treat because we “deserve” one. We definitely deserve to treat ourselves, but we don’t need to give ourselves a financial hangover in the process. Sometimes we need a “pause” in our lives to truly reward ourselves. Here are a few ideas that will keep you in the black when you’re feeling blue.
1) Sunrise, Sunset
Few things in this world are as beautiful as the sun rising or setting. When we need to decompress, watching the sun rise or set can be the perfect way to let the stress melt away. Find a spot outside in a comfy setting, maybe bring along a cup of coffee or cocoa, take in the colors and just BE.
2) Enjoy the Seasons
Life passes by so quickly that we sometimes literally forget to stop and smell the roses. Each season offers beautiful sights and sounds that we can miss when we are racing through life. Set aside a half hour to commune with nature. Go outside and truly experience it. Whether it’s a moonlit walk in the snow or simply sitting in your flower garden, disconnect your mind from the “rush” of everyday life and experience the season. Breathe in the musky scent of fall leaves, feel the crunch of snow beneath your feet, really SEE the blue of a summer sky.
3) Make a Date with Fido
Spending time with your pet is one of the fastest ways to feel your blood pressure come down. Throw the ball for your dog, sit with your cat in your lap and listen to that magical purr, talk to your bird, or watch the serenity of your aquarium—all of these are nice ways to spend some quality time with your pet and save your sanity.
4) Act Like a Kid
What did you enjoy doing as a child? Did you enjoy flying a kite? Was roller skating (or blading) your thing? Maybe you enjoyed sitting on the riverbank with a fishing pole. Do those things again and re-connect with where you came from. If you have children, you can involve them too, so you both win. If you don’t have children of your own, borrow a niece or nephew, or maybe a friend’s son or daughter. Few things bring us joy like spreading joy!
5) Savor a Meal
What is your favorite meal? And when was the last time you really TASTED that meal? Whatever your fave is, make it and sit down and really enjoy it. Shut off the TV, switch your phone to silent, put candles and the “good” china on the table, and savor every bite. Eat slowly, and actually experience the flavors and textures.
As tempting as “things” can be to treat ourselves with, sometimes it’s the simple experiences in life that bring us peace and are the best rewards.
Photo Credit: iClipart