RELAX BACK INTO THE ROUTINE…
Wow what a whirlwind summer it has been!! With retreats, classes, holidays and a very exciting engagement to celebrate (eeeeek.. yes he asked and I said yes!!) we feel like we just haven’t stopped for months and the work & life routine has been thrown out the window a little bit (oops).
So this week we are getting back on track and it has got us thinking about how to cultivate a healthy routine and yet keep that life work balance just right.
For many of you the next few weeks will see the end of summer holidays and the start of the second part of the year get under way. With getting back into work and getting the kids back to school there is plenty going on and can easily seem like holidays are a distant memory. Long gone are the days when ‘beach or pool?’ is the biggest decision to make in a day.
But worry not… we have a few tips on the how to have the smoothest and most stress free transition back into the routine….
Holidays tend to bring out the best in us, whether it’s waking up with a smile on our face, being more positive or simply living in a more carefree and relaxed way. These simple often make us more fun and happy not only in how we feel but how others feel around us too. Think of just one thing that you do differently on holiday and see if you can keep it going. It might be being more relaxed with your family or jumping straight out of bed with enthusiasm for the day aheadwhatever you think of keep it up for the rest of the year! My own holiday habit that I’ve decided to keep going is waking up with a smile for the day ahead (even when it is raining in London). SO to make sure I don’t’ forget I have changed my alarm in the morning to say ‘Wake Up & Smile, it’s a bright new day!’ Feel free to borrow mine up with your own way to keep that smiley holiday face on!
Many of us actually eat healthier on holiday, despite the possible over indulging at times. We often eat more salad, fruit and natural local ingredients when we’re away as many countries we visit serve local delicious produce. Try to keep those fresh and healthy meals going even though you’re back home. It will make you feel brighter, lighter and clearer with tons more energy. You could visit your local farmers market and grab some fruit or vegetables you wouldn’t normally try, or play around with some new recipes inspired by your travels? Start getting creative and enjoy that fresh holiday food at home.
One thing that I’m sure we can all agree on is that holidays are relaxing. However that doesn’t mean that we have to become stressed the minute the plane lands. Try some pranayama (breathing) techniques to help stay relaxed and bring you back to the blue skies and sunshine in no time.
Step 1. Become aware of your breath, noticing the texture & rhythm of your breath
Step 2. Start to relax your body as you start to breath in & out through your nose, keeping your face and jaw soft
Step 3. Inhale slowly & deeply into the back, sides and bottom of your lungs
Step 4. Exhale slowly and softly with control but no force or tension
Step 5. Keep breathing in and out through the nose slowly, with each breath trying to slow it down and lengthen each inhalation and exhalation
Step 6. Relax and enjoy the calm!
As the old saying goes we tend to get ‘stuck in the routine’, so my advice to you is to get unstuck in it. Allow for flexibility and change as you start to get back into the daily working/school life. Routine doesn’t have to be rigid, and at times being able to move and change things can offer a freedom and ease to daily life. Of course routine is needed, especially when it comes to children, but note what maybe wasn’t serving you in the past and make changes so that the whole routine of the family can work for everyone stress free. As an example, it could be as simple and working with another mum to take turns just one evening a week to pick each others kids up giving you just a few extra hours one day a week to go to yoga or the gym? Or it could be waking the kids up just 5 minutes earlier to have a slightly smoother and less rushed morning of breakfast, getting dressed and off to school. Or maybe it’s finding a new route into work that allows you to get some fresh air on your way in? Whatever it is allow yourself the chance to mix things up and make it work for you.
As with the previous tip, one of the wonderful things about starting afresh is the ability to change things but also add in new things into your routine. Try adding in just a few minutes of meditation or yoga into your morning or night time routines. It could be just a few minutes of stretching first thing in the morning, or maybe a few simple yoga poses to help unwind in the evening. For the morning I would recommend a gentle sun salutation, downward facing dog or twist to stretch out the spine from sleep. In the evenings why not try a few simple poses to help calm the nervous system and prepare for sleep, such as butterfly pose or some seated forward folds. It wont’ take long but will make the world of difference. For some inspiration check outone of our simple yoga flows on You Tube -
Enjoy getting back into your fun, healthy and happy new spruced up routine!
Co-Founder of The Retreat Collection