Like all of you, I’m constantly trying to find new ways to improve my health and happiness. Wellbeing is now an industry unto itself, and conversations with friends always loop back to the positive lifestyle changes they’re road-testing. The British fashion brand Joules champion healthy, happy and active lifestyles, and they recently invited me to share the healthy habits that shape my week. So here goes…
Weekly yoga classes
As I’ve mentioned before, I find meditation completely impossible. And I probably need it more than anyone, because my mind is always racing at 100 miles a minute. However, I do love yoga, and find that gets me into an almost-meditative state. I practise vinyasa flow yoga at least once a week, and because it’s a series of dynamic movements connected to the the breath it always calms my mind.
My top tip for anyone new to yoga is to try a variety of classes before you commit to a weekly session. Every teacher is different, and there are many styles of yoga, so you might hate one class and adore another. It took me a while to find the right practise for my needs.
Writing a gratitude journal
The human brain is wired to hold onto negative thoughts, but the simple act of jotting down three things you’re thankful for each day can help to combat this natural negativity bias. I started writing in a gratitude journal last year, and it’s helped to reframe my thought patterns. Give it a go for a week and see if it changes anything for you…
Considering the environment
It sounds like a pretty general statement to say I care about the environment. And I’m in no way as environmentally-friendly as I should be. But I try to make the little things a priority, such as recycling, eating less meat, taking my own water to the gym (buying bottled water is so bad for the environment) and purchasing eco-friendly, ethical products.
This also stems to my fashion and beauty choices, and where possible I choose environmentally-friendly options. Joules have just partnered up with Natural World, an eco-friendly line footwear, made from 100% natural, vegan materials. I always live in slip-on plimsolls throughout spring/summer, so I was thrilled to discover Natural World’s canvas trainers. They come in a range of fun colours, are super-comfortable and are also strawberry scented. Yes, you read that correctly: strawberry scented ethical footwear! What more could you ask for?
Taking the stairs
Learning to drive is still top of my long-term to-do list. I’ve been putting it off every year since I turned 17! And, as a result, I walk everywhere. This is obviously a very healthy side effect to my lack of motivation. And I also make a point to walk up escalators and take the stairs rather than elevators. I spend so much of my day sitting at a desk, hunched over a laptop, so I now jump at any opportunity to move.
Scheduling “friendship dates”
Connecting with friends is an instant happiness booster. But, like many of you, my besties are scattered across the country/globe. So it can be a real challenge to prioritise friendships. Spontaneous coffee dates are not an option, but I try to schedule at least one “friendship date” per week. This can be as simple as talking over FaceTime or Skype for half an hour, or taking it in turns to visit each other.
I think it also helps to find something that forces you to connect regular basis – whether it’s a project, shared hobby, bookclub or TV show. For instance, every Sunday evening I spend two hours talking to my friend Daniella on WhatsApp while we watch The Bachelor. We met at university, and now live in different cities, so sharing a guilty TV pleasure gives us an excuse to catch up every week.
~ This post was created in collaboration with Joules. Thank you for continuing to support the sponsors that make Coco’s Tea Party possible. ~
What are the healthy habits that shape your week? And will you be checking out the Natural World collection at Joules? PLUS, get 20% off at joules.com until 1st May 2017 with the promo code CTP20 (for UK purchases only).
Photos by Bang On Style