We take on too much. We do too much, we commit to too much and we dedicate all our time to something, or someone else. Our lives are becoming more and more crazy, and in the process we are pushing further and further away from ourselves.
It’s time to stop and smell the roses! Take a time out for yourself and commit to doing 3 things that make you happy! I don’t mean buying new makeup or clothes (even though a new outfit and lipstick always helps), but little things you used to do before, that have somehow become irrelevant because they take up too much time or “they are bad for us”.
If you had to pick out three things, what would they be? I thought long and hard about this one, and realised it wasn’t that difficult to do more of the things I loved…
I used to love reading! I was never a total book worm and I would take my time with reading a book, but I still enjoyed it. Sitting by the pool (or beach back when I lived in Durbs) with a good book was my version of happiness.
Then, along came the iPad – and Kindle quickly replaced all my books. While I do often read on my iPad, I find it incredibly distracting. With my scatter brain it’s so difficult to get into the story, especially when emails and social media distractions pop up and bring you back to reality.
I mean, how can you not stop and read that annoying email in the middle of reading your book? It’s there! You just can’t resist!
So, now I’m getting back into actual books! There’s nothing quite like holding a novel in your hands and escaping, 100%.
Right now I’m reading Sophie Kinsella’s new novel, My Not So Perfect Life. I am enjoying it so much, I almost need to pace myself to not finish it too quickly. I want it to last longer.
Even though I’m taking my time, I look forward to escaping into the story for just 30 minutes a day. It’s like my little treat that’s far removed from the digital world and distractions.
I’ve always loved writing. I guess that’s why I studied Journalism – and while I do write every day for my blog, the writing I’m referring to is a different kind. Putting pen to paper (again physical pen and paper and not the digital kind).
For me, I’ve always found it soothing to write. Whether it’s stories, to-do lists, letters (yes, I was the freak with pen-pals when they were still cool) and just getting stuff down on paper! If nobody reads it, even better!
I’m not talking about a Dear Diary situation here. I’ve never thought those were my thing, but recently I’ve started exploring other writing techniques that have helped me, my writing and they have given me a way to reconnect with myself!
Morning pages is one of them. What this entails is basically, filling 3 full a4 pages, early in the morning with just words.
Completely unedited, random thoughts that are going through your head and getting them down on paper. The trick is to do them first thing in the morning, before your brain has had a chance to “try to perfect and analyse” your thoughts.
It’s amazing what manifests when you are totally honest with yourself and you know nobody is going to read what you’ve written. You can keep or toss your morning pages, it’s completely up to you! It’s not about creating a record, but rather escaping through words. Getting them out – even if you don’t read them.
Travel Journalling is also a lot of fun. It helps you record your travels and serves as a wonderful momento and keepsake. I’ve always wanted to do these, but I always found starting the story to be the hardest part. I get stuck in this block, that if the story doesn’t sound amazing from the start, what’s the point.
I read Dave Fox’s Globejotting and picked up another writing technique that has made all the difference. I actually use this technique for other non travel writing’s as well, because it’s so much fun. It is again, raw and unedited and a great way to put pen to paper.
With this technique you time yourself; lets say 30 minutes and write down everything about your travel experience, as much as you can, not worrying about how you sound or spelling etc. The idea is to get it all out.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll find that your words are more authentic, and true to you because they are your words. Not words that you’ve tried to make sound more eloquent for someone else’s reading pleasure.
After you have your rough draft, you use it as a guideline for your story. Editing, chopping and changing to create a wonderful story that flows.
Globejotting is filled with wonderful nuggets that can benefit your writing, even if you want to write about something totally unrelated to travel. It was such a great find and I’m so glad that got it, even if it was the cover that initially sold me! Who ever said you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, clearly has no idea just how drawn I am to cute illustrations!
Eat More Ice Cream
Ok, this one I could probably do without, or at least, that’s what my hips keep telling me -haha- but you know what, you only live once. Right?
Either way, eating ice-cream makes me happy, so why the hell not? And besides, summer is almost over, so I only have a few weeks of Ice-cream eating in me before I freeze to death (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it).
So I’m going to seize the opportunity.
My absolute favourite is Country Fresh Napoletana. It’s like a triple whammy of yummy… chocolate, strawberry and vanilla all rolled into one.
It’s the perfect way to satisfy every craving – even the ones that haven’t hit yet.
To make it even more indulgent, I lace it with chocolate sauce. My favourite is Illovo Chocolate Sauce. It just makes everything better!
Yah, I could probably do without the ice cream happiness, but if I can find a way to eat it only once a week, it would be a win win situation!
Now to find a way to silence the ice-cream monster in my head who keeps hearing the freezer calling it’s name.