Every once in a while, life gets hectic. We’re talking about attending-a-weeklong-work-conference while planning-a-wedding-AND-preparing-for-the-arrival-of-a-new-baby-nephew hectic. Or, you know, traveling-to-a-foreign-country-right-before-the-start-of-a-new-job hectic. (True stories.)
While there’s something to be said about juggling a lot at once and managing to stay on top of it all, there’s also no better time to seek pleasure in your day-to-day routine than when you’re at your busiest. And if there’s one thing we excel at over here, it’s finding little ways to treat ourselves before, during, or after a long day—because we understand the importance of self-care. Avoid burnout with these simple and affordable ideas, and you can bet your bottom dollar you will too.
1. Wake up to the smell of fresh coffee. (Program your automatic coffee maker the night before.)
2. Take a stroll through nature.
3. Connect with someone. Whether this means meeting up with an old friend for lunch or calling your mom on the way home from work, there’s nothing like a good conversation to rejuvenate your mind and spirit.
4. Dress up for no good reason. Dust off your sexy heels and swipe on some red lipstick.
5. Start planning a weekend trip. A bachelorette party for one of your girls, perhaps? Or maybe a romantic getaway with your boo. Either way, give yourself something to really look forward to after the craze dies down.
6. Snack on 72% (or higher) dark chocolate. The delicious treat is great for midday energy slumps.
7. Listen to your favorite tunes while you work. (Research shows that playing music can not only boost your mood but also, in some instances, your productivity.) If you work in an office, we recommend investing in a pair of these.
8. If the weather’s nice, eat a meal outside. Or anywhere away from a computer screen.
9. Spruce up your desk space. Splurge on pretty supplies like these to keep your office looking fab.
10. Look through old photo albums.
11. Give yourself a mini-facial. (We love this Hungarian Herbal Mud Treatment.)
12. Stress-bake a batch of cupcakes. And then share them with family and friends.
13. Take a long, warm bath. Preferably with lit candles, essential oils (lavender works wonders in reducing stress), and a glass of wine.
14. Put on your comfiest pair of pajamas. Pray, journal, meditate.
15. Celebrate a silly national holiday. For example, August 24th is National Waffle Day. Don’t mind if we do.
16. Pick up a page-turner. The book that’s been sitting on your bedside table for ages that you just can’t seem to get into? Put it back on the shelf for now. Instead, get lost in the newest Nicholas Sparks novel you’ve been eyeing (or whatever strikes your fancy).
17. Go out dancing. If you have a significant other, bring him along and pretend you’re on a first date. (Give him—not your cell phone—your full attention.)
18. Brew a pot of herbal tea. Add honey and enjoy.
19. Watch the newest episode of that TV show you missed last week. Even if it is Bachelor in Paradise.
20. Change your sheets. Fall asleep naked.
Photo by Averie Woodard.