January 20

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21 Easy Ways to Make Your Day Better That Don’t Require Much Effort

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We all need a little boost now and again. Some days are just tougher than others. That's the way of the world. Next time you need a little pick me up, remember some of these tips. They don't require much effort but will definitely help your day go a little bit better.

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Get a good night's rest

Do what you need to do so that your bedroom is inviting, comfortable and calm.

In the morning, make your bed. When you go to bed that night, your bed will be so much more inviting when it's already been made.

If the weather's a little cold and chilly, you might like to look out a hot water bottle or wheat bag. Place it in your bed around 10 or 15 minutes before you're planning on getting in. You'll be able to snuggle under the covers all cosy and warm.

Conversely, when the nights are warmer, ensure your bed linen reflects the climate. For example, you might look at replacing the duvet with some lighter sheets for the summer months.

Stay well hydrated

Make sure you're drinking enough water for your requirements.

If you feel like something special, jazz up a boring old plain glass of water. Add some ice, perhaps some sliced cucumber or mint leaves. Maybe a squeeze of fresh lemon or orange juice to add some zing. Go with what takes your fancy.

Dine outside in the fresh air

On nicer evenings, take our dinner out into the garden or balcony. Make it more formal with proper table settings or just perch your plate on your lap.

Whatever works for you and allows you to soak up the ambience that lighter, warmer evenings bring.

Have a go at meditation

You don't have to commit a whole heap of time.

Spend just 5 minutes sitting in a quiet place.

Get yourself comfortable and aim to just concentrate on your breathing. Notice your breath moving in and out of your lungs and body.

Feel the sensations of your rib cage and diaphragm expanding and relaxing.

Make sure you take your lunch break

Set aside time each day to break for lunch.

Make a habit of actually getting away from your desk and enjoy your lunch.

Even better, aim for a mindful lunch break. Eat your meal slowly and notice and enjoy the smell, flavour, taste, texture and colours of your food.

Get up and move your body

Go with whatever takes your fancy. Maybe you want some stretching and would like to do a quick yoga or pilates session.

I've got a friend who likes to put on music and dance around her living room for 20 minutes.

Alternatively, you could go for a walk or run outside. Perhaps you have a skateboard or pair of roller skates?

Be a kid again - dance, skip or jump around.

Reach out and connect to someone

That friend you haven't spoken to in a while, give them a phone.

Missing someone? Flick them a quick text.

Don't just let your time waste away scrolling through your social media news feed. Make a point to send a message to someone directly. Start a conversation and see where it takes you.

Nourish your body with a fresh salad

Add something crunch for different textures. Maybe a zingy citrus dressing to enhance the flavour too.

Sometimes eating something simple like a salad, made from fresh, good quality ingredients invigorates you from the inside out.

Top up your vitamin D levels by getting outside for some sunshine

Whether your working in the garden or just going for a walk around the suburb.

Sunlight is good for your body in appropriate amounts. Remember to follow SunSmart guidelines to keep you safe.

Spread some good vibes on social media

See something you like? Has one of your friends or contacts achieved something amazing?

Maybe they're really happy about something going on in their lives. Let them know. Drop a comment and write something kind.

BONUS TIP: this one works even better face to face. Pay someone a compliment and make their day better.

It'll automatically make your day better too.

Get out the aftershave or favourite body lotion

A quick spritz of your favourite scent will instantly lift your spirits.

Likewise, using a nice body moisturiser (even if it's just the rough patch on your elbows) is a little act of self-care that's good for the body and soul.

Do nothing, deliberately

Allow yourself a few minutes to just kick back and enjoy your surroundings.

Listen to the hustle and bustle of life going on around you. Listen to the weather, the wildlife, the background noise. Alternatively, put some of your favourite music on.

Feel the smile spread across your face.

Head to the kitchen and make yourself a cup of tea. Watch the little wisps of steam rise from your mug and know your day is improving.

Check out someone who motivates you

What's your favourite celebrity or idol doing? Check their Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

Additionally, you might want to check out a feel-good news story. Normally keeping up with the news can seem full of doom and gloom.

Instead, check out ABC's positive news section to restore your faith in humanity.

Do something nice for someone else

Linked with tip number 10 above, helping someone else will give you a little endorphin boost.

Do something nice for someone you suspect may be feeling a little isolated. Perhaps they might like to receive a little care package.

Maybe your work colleague could do with some help to complete a task.

Perhaps a neighbour needs a favour. Help them and help yourself to the good vibes and rewarding feeling you'll get.

Take a reset and refresh break

If you work in an office or at a desk, aim to get up every half hour or so. Stand, stretch, visit the bathroom or go and grab a drink of water.

If you're at home on the couch, go and empty the dishwasher. Play with the dog - that will improve your dog's day too!

Avoid long periods sat in the same spot if you want your mood to improve.

Learn or practise a new skill

Attempt a new recipe you found online. Have a go at one of the countless tutorial videos you can find on YouTube.

What's one thing you've always wanted to know how to do? Go and learn.

Appreciate nature

Make the most of whatever outdoor space you have available. Attract birds by putting out some water or even food for them.

Ideally, locate it near a window of your home and you can watch them whenever they stop by for a visit.

Who doesn't love a cute animal pic?

Watch some cute puppy or dog videos.

If cats are more your thing, watch kitty videos.

No, seriously. They'll help put a smile on your face and help you feel just that little bit better about the world.

Remind yourself that it's okay not to be okay

Acknowledge the fact that you're having an off day.

The feelings you're experiencing now can and will pass.

Treat mental health as a spectrum - on any given day it will swing up or down. That's totally okay.

Tell yourself that you are enough

Look yourself in the mirror and tell your reflection you're good enough.

Cut yourself some slack and don't push such high expectations of yourself. No one has their life in complete order 100% of the time.

You're doing a good job.

Reach out for help if you need it

Support is available.

If you're struggling to cope and are in Australia, call Beyond Blue for support on 1300 22 4636.

There's also Lifeline who offer crisis support to anyone in their time of need. Their number is 13 11 14. Don't struggle alone.

About the author

Paul Stokes

Paul Stokes BSc (Hons) is a Certified Personal Trainer, Accredited Sports Nutritionist, qualified Exercise to Music Instructor, Precision Nutrition coach, Massage Therapist and teaches 8 of the Les Mills Group Exercise programs. He currently works in the Oil & Gas industry as a Wellness Coach, imparting his vast knowledge and experience to improve the quality of life of several hundred offshore workers.

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