Well-being, defined as the state of being happy or healthy, is important for all individuals, but it can be elusive to achieve in today’s times. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance and strong relationships, eating and sleeping well, exercising right, and more can be tough to tick off. But not if you take small steps in the right direction!
Make use of your weekends to improve your well-being. Here are 8 awesome activities you’re sure to fall in love with!
1) Read a Book
While reading can transport you into another world and provide a temporary escape from your worries, it also has some health and well-being benefits to offer. According to a survey, reading reduced stress levels by 68%! Studies also show that reading fiction can make people more comfortable with uncertainty and open to different possibilities.
Reading boosts intelligence, enhances social skills, and increases empathy, helping you build better relationships with others and adding value to your life. Just be sure to read a printed book, not an e-book, especially if you’ll be reading before bedtime!
2) Indulge in Gardening
First things first, gardening is a great form of exercise and can help prevent high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, and obesity. Gardening is also a stress buster and can boost brain health. Simply interacting with nature can help your mind and body heal too!
Grow fruits, vegetables, and herbs that you would love to eat- they’ll be the freshest you’ll have ever tasted and you’ll also be motivated to cook.
Which brings us to…
3) Cook Your Meals
Okay! If that sounds like a lot, at least cook one meal each weekend. Cooking isn’t just another household chore like folding the laundry or vacuuming the carpet; it is innate meditation if you focus on the color, feel, and smell of each ingredient, concentrate on the sounds as you chop vegetables, and dwell on the fact that a lot goes into bringing a fruit or a vegetable to your kitchen!
Whip something up with whatever you have on hand, keeping in mind flavors that you like. If you want to follow a recipe, do so by all means, but enjoy the process instead of aiming for perfection.
4) Spend Time with Animals
If you have a pet, you’re already on the path to well-being! That being said, you can still spend time with animals if you don’t own a pet or can’t have one. Offer to walk or sit for a neighbor, friend, relative, or colleague. You can also contact your local animal shelter and offer to volunteer.
Why should you do it? Pet therapy can positively impact mental health by decreasing feelings of loneliness and encourage communication. Walking a pet or playing games with it can boost physical fitness and reduce stress.
5) Take a Long Bath
If you don’t find time for a long bath on weekdays – thanks to the daily grind – this is just the thing you need to help you unwind over weekends. A long bath, particularly a warm one, can improve blood circulation, detoxify your body, improve bowel movement, and provide pain relief to sore joints.
Taking a bath before bed also induces sleep. Be sure to have the water temperature just a couple of degrees higher than body temperature; you don’t want to scald yourself. For a hot day, enjoy a cold water bath to help you drift off to sleep easily. Add essential oils of your liking to the water for the desired effect.
6) Go Shopping
Whether you decide to treat yourself to some new clothes or diamond rings, retail therapy – both online and offline – is actually a thing! However, don’t forget about your finances when you head out to hit the malls. If you don’t want to experience pangs of guilt when you’re done shopping, decide on a budget, make a list of things you want, and splurge accordingly.
While walking around for the best price or to find something you really like can help you burn calories, finally getting your hands on what you want can give you a sense of elation! Apart from lifting your mood, shopping also allows for mental and social engagement, and can be especially fun if done with friends!
Even if it’s just for a day or two, traveling to a new place can be a rejuvenating experience for your mind, body, and soul. Traveling offers a different environment and new experiences that challenge the brain, promoting brain health. It also reduces stress by letting you escape from everyday life and gives you the opportunity to embrace change.
Plan your trip depending on what you feel like doing- do you want to spend time relaxing by the beach or at a spa, or do you fancy a hiking or camping trip with your friends?
8) Get Creative
Even if you think that you don’t have a creative bone in your body, you’re sure to find something you’ll love doing while also improving the state of your mind and body. Consider maintaining a journal to keep your thoughts organized and to help relieve stress. If you already maintain a journal, you can turn it into a work of art with mixed media materials. Take inspiration from the Internet!
Other ideas would be changing the look of your living room or bedroom, trying your hand at calligraphy, filling in an adult coloring book, knitting, crocheting, etc.
With this list of 8 activities, we’re sure you’ve already decided how you’re going to spend your weekends. So get started on improving your well-being right away and have FUN!