In a hectic world we could all do with taking time out to switch off from our day to day stresses and strains. To stop consuming and to start more simple and sustainable living. To take some time to recoup, refresh and reset. Here are 5 sustainable activities that I find relaxing and enjoying, which can fit into everyday life and keep our planet safe and sound.
Have a lovely cup of tea
I’m not sure if it is just a British thing, but many a problem, heartbreak, conundrum has been softened by sipping on a soothing cup of tea. Whether it be a dark and strong breakfast tea, a vibrant green jasmine or a soothing chamomile, after the first mouthful you always seem to have the ability to face the problem with a calmer perspective and a more open mind. My brew of choice is to start the day with a medium strength black tea with milk from Fairtrade producers Clipper.
Being in open space
Perhaps this should be at the top of my list. For me the most relaxing, resetting thing I can do is to get out into some open space in the fresh air. For me, a hill walk and roaming through forests, fields and hidden pathways is the most calming thing I can do. If the weather isn’t great, even just driving to a high point and getting out of the car has a similar effect. Looking out at open space is very soothing. Stopping to just listen to the nature or gazing out into space to get a glimpse of wildlife is revitalising! Feeling the breeze on your face can literally blow away your stress and allow you to take a moment and refocus with a fresh standpoint.
Eating fresh Seasonal Food
I am a big foodie. As soon as I wake up I’m thinking about breakfast, and lunch and dinner are always on my mind. There is such a difference in flavour and texture when you are eating seasonal food that hasn’t been pumped full of chemicals to force growth. The taste is completely different. I remember picking an orange of a tree on holiday when I was younger and I couldn’t believe the sweet taste and scent, it was completely different to the majority of supermarket produce. Another favourite is homegrown tomatoes, they literally burst with flavour. I also try to eat organic food whenever possible. I have recently started with Riverford Organics delivery. They focus on seasonal produce and provide recipes in the box for how to get the best out of the ingredients.
A fresh or soothing scent
Just like a blast o fresh air, a deep inhalation of your favourite essential oil can work wonders for clearing and revitalising the mind. Aromatherapy is something I am really keen learn more about, I just need to find some time! One of the most common, and actually my favourite essential oil is Lavender. To me it is a really relaxing and calming smell and it has tons of uses from soothing sunburn to the most well know use as an aid for sleep. This Works does the best lavender based sleep spray I have tried so far. Aside from essential oils, smells also have the extraordinary ability to transport you back in time, if only momentarily, to favoured memories. It could be the tropical nose of coconut sunscreen taking you back to the beach, or you mums homemade cakes when you came home from school.
Picking up a good book
Reading a good book can transport you away from your everyday thoughts and give you a mental break (studious revision books aside!). Reading can take you into a fantasy world of fiction or delve into new world of discovery, to find a new recipe or plan your next adventure. For me, reading for 20 minutes before bed helps me to slow down and switch off. A couple of my favourite recent novels have been The Tea Planters Wife by Dina Jefferies and Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. I’m not going to let you know my favourite cook books as I plan to do a post on them soon, however I do absolutely love a Sunday afternoon browsing through them and picking what I am going to cook next.
What do you all like to do switch off? Please comment below and let me know. Sally