4 ways to live a more fulfilling life
Put down your phone, log out of Instagram and prioritise your self-care routine; here’s why we’re going back to basics.
As life tends to slow down over the Christmas break, even the most level-headed among us can start feeling restless. But rather than penning a list of unrealistic resolutions, why not use this time to focus on your own happiness instead?
Here are four ways to live a more fulfilling life…
Time to switch off
If you’re feeling like your life is inadequate, you certainly aren’t alone. In fact, the mounting pressure of modern living has been linked to excessive levels of anxiety and depression in the UK. So, what can we do about it? We all know that switching off our phones and getting out into the fresh air can positively impact our wellbeing. But a recent study found people are healthier and happier if they spend just two hours each week surrounded by nature. The research – led by the University of Exeter – discovered significant benefits for everyone regardless of age, ethnic group or gender. And it doesn’t matter what kind of natural space you choose or how you spend the time – you can just sit and savour the tranquillity.
OK, we get it: when you’re at a low ebb, the idea of ‘counting your blessings’ can sound a little patronising. However, research indicates that the feeling of gratitude can increase happiness, improve relationships and even decrease depression. Suzy Glaskie, functional medicine health coach and founder of Peppermint Wellness, says writing a daily gratitude journal is an easy way to reduce toxic emotions and feel, well, happier: ‘The feeling of gratitude is an invaluable antidote to our in-built negativity bias, which causes us to get caught up in negative thoughts,’ she says. ‘Just get yourself a nice pad and jot down five things that you are grateful for every night before bedtime.’
Live life to the full
Believe it or not, most of us are harbouring our own set of ‘limiting beliefs’ and they can prevent us from finding true happiness and fulfilment. Put simply, they are ill-founded ideas we learn about ourselves as children and then carry into adulthood, affecting our life choices in a profound way. ‘Anything that disturbs your peace gives access to a limiting belief,’ explains Emily Wysock-Wright, wellness specialist and founder of Adira. ‘As a result of a limitation, you can build your story based on the limit as opposed to what you actually want from your life.’
To remedy this, she says we can all learn to identify these limiting beliefs by linking our current struggles back to our childhood. If we apply the wisdom we have today to how a situation made us feel at an earlier time, we can start to pick apart the belief and create new truths.
Go with the flow
We’re all aware that a woman’s monthly cycle can directly impact how she feels. But while PMS is well documented, we often don’t realise that our sleep, emotions and ability to concentrate can be directly linked to our periods.
Natasha Richardson, founder of Forage Botanicals and author of Your Period Handbook, recommends keeping a journal of mental and physical changes throughout your cycle: ‘This will help you learn that each month isn’t a crazy unpredictable rollercoaster, but actually a subtle cycle very similar to the ebb and flow of the moon,’ she explains. ‘We are logical and outgoing in ovulation but intuitive and internalised during menstruation. When we recognise these changes as natural, we can learn to flow with them rather than fight against them.’