Tuesday, December 29, 2015

The Holiday

I was finally able to have a movie fest over the holidays in order to play catch up on some titles that I missed along the way.

The Holiday (2006) with Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Jude Law and Jack Black was the cutest movie that I've seen in a while. I absolutely fell in love with the concept. For those of you who haven't seen the movie, two women with relationship and career issues swap houses in each other's countries (USA and England.) The ladies meet local guys and fall in love.

Hey, I'm a romance writer so being fond of the love stories was a given. But what I found fascinating was the swap. There are times when life gets overwhelming, whether it's from the holidays, job, family or finances. Wouldn't it be nice to just say you've had enough and take off somewhere to recharge your battery? For me, two weeks in a cottage in the Scottish Highlands would be ideal. That's where I would want to regroup.

According to mindbodygreen.com, here are 27 ways to recharge your battery.

1. Plan a tech detox.

2. Go out with your girlfriends and drink a little too much wine.

3. Plan a swap group with your closest friends. This can be a clothes swap, book swap, or any theme you can think of!

4. Get out in nature. Nothing is more refreshing than some time outdoors! Look up new hiking trails online or spend the day at the beach.

5. Connect with your inner child. What did you love doing when you were little? Draw a picture, make a collage, build a fort.

6. Volunteer at a local animal shelter or even adopt a new pet from a shelter.

7. Try something new. Go rock climbing, try a foreign cuisine or simply read a book you wouldn't normally choose.

8. Clean out your closets and any clutter around your house and donate to Goodwill. Your energy feeds off your environment, so tidy up!

9. Plan your next vacation. The thrill of having something to look forward to will keep your going for awhile.

10. Light candles and take a bath with essential oils or Epsom salt. The Epsom salt will relax your muscles, and essential oils like chamomile or lavender will relax your body and mind.

11. Take a mental health day from work. Watch your favorite movies, meet up with a friend, walk around your neighborhood, see a matinee movie. Sometimes being "bad" is just what you need.

12. Recreate your favorite fancy, decadent restaurant meal at home. Chances are it'll taste much better when it's made with an ingredient list you control, plus some love.

13. Plant a garden. This idea will recharge you more than once. You'll feel good creating life, saving money on food and you'll get time to yourself out in nature every time you need to tend to it.

14. Rearrange your furniture. A new environment will likely bring new ideas and perspectives.

15. Budget money to get a quick 10-minute shoulder, neck and head massage once a week, or a 30- to 60-minute massage once a month.
Massages increase circulation and can help you relax.

16. Start a bucket list. Thinking about your goals in life will help you focus on the big picture and what will truly makes you happy.

17. Create something. Work on one of those projects you've neglected on your Pinterest board. Make it a Pinterest party by inviting friends.

18. Make a playlist of all of your favorite songs. Play them at home or take a drive and sing along at the top of your lungs.

19. Go to your local farmers market and talk with the farmers and people at the booths. You'll feel great connecting with your community and learning where your food comes from.

20. Plan a date night. Chances are, if you have kids or a demanding job, you haven't been on a proper date in quite a while. Here are 20 great date night ideas. If you're not in a relationship, have a friend date! Try to make it a weekly ritual and take turns planning the date.

21. Take a 20-minute cat nap.

22. Drink a green juice or smoothies when you start feeling the afternoon slump.

23. Set an alarm for each hour to remind yourself to get up and move around.

24. Get outside during lunch. Take a walk, eat outside, go to a local cafe. The main point is to get away from the office and your computer screen.

25. Meditate. Meditating sitting, or even lying down for 15 minutes can help you relax before you dig back into your work.

26. Take a shower. If you're stuck on an idea or frustrated after a hard day, a shower will give you a chance to relax and rethink your situation.

27. Exercise! Aim for 30 minutes of medium-high intensity exercise every day. It doesn't have to be all at once. Regular exercise will help regulate hormones (hello, endorphins!), increase circulation and often helps people clear their minds and reduce stress.

If you could swap places with someone anywhere in the world to recharge your battery, where would you go?

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