Feeling Zen during the Silly Season

Posted by Mel Homer on 1 December 2015

This is one of my favourite times of year – the days are getting longer, it’s getting (vaguely) warmer and the anticipation of long, hot (ish) summer days and nights stretch before us.

The weeks leading up to Christmas are fun, but can be frenzied, and sometimes you just have to take a moment to stop and reset before you put on that frock and head off to yet another festive social gathering.

Don’t get me wrong, social gatherings are GREAT, and good for the soul, but too much of a good thing is not necessarily a good thing, if you get my drift. Eating and drinking are two of my favourite pastimes, but the festive season can get a little out of control, even for the most stringent, Kale eating, smoothie drinking best of us.

Here are 3 things I like to do to make myself feel good, and help ‘ get my Zen on’ at this hectic time of year.

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 As somebody once posted on Instagram accompanied with a pretty picture of the water.. “The Ocean is my Potion”. Getting out on the water is one of the most therapeutic things I know.  It instantly relaxes you. If you have access to a boat, excellent! The islands in the Hauraki Gulf are incredible to explore. There are many ferry trips available, try grabbing a picnic and heading out to Motuihe for a weekend afternoon.  Stand Up paddle boarding is also a great way to spend an afternoon, it’s easy to learn and you can hire them at Fergs Kayaks around the waterfront.

Even just sitting on the beach and gazing at the ocean has a soothing effect. Stop off at one of the many beautiful bays around town for 10 minutes on your way home from work and just sit. Guaranteed instant Zen!   

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I’m reading Dr Libby’s Exhausted to Energized book at the moment, and one of the key points she makes is that we can make ourselves feel so much better simply by moving. I won’t get into all of the science-y reasons she gives as to why this is, although it IS fascinating. Get out for a walk around the block. Climb up one of the many volcanoes. (I can recommend Mt Albert – it’s an easy climb and gorgeous views).  Lululemon have free summer session Bend and Booty classes most Saturday mornings down at their store in Britomart – 8-9 and it’s 30 mins of HIT training with Move Eat Play’s Sam Bluemel followed by 20 minutes of stretching with Yoga teacher Nikki Ralston. Just turn up, no booking required. If stretching is more your thing, there are free sunrise yoga classes at Queens Wharf once a month until April. Check out http://www.yourwaterfront.co.nz/  for details.

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It is the season for indulgence, and that’s fine.  It’s fun to socialise and eat drink and be merry.        

It’s the over indulgence I struggle with.  Just like a Labrador, sometimes I don’t know when to stop eating or drinking. My skin suffers, my energy levels suffer, and my jeans button suffers.  My motto at this time of year is, amidst the indulgence, try and put some good things in and on your body.

Good things in – let me share this smoothie recipe I got recently from Nutribullet for a Pineapple Lump Smoothie. ..delicious!

¾ cup fresh pineapple

½ banana

2 medjool dates

1 heaped tsp cacao

1 heaped tsp cacao nibs

1 Tbs coconut cream

1/3 cup almond milk

Good things on – A slightly dodgy diet and a few late nights can really start to wreak havoc on my skin. I’ve started investing in some long term looking after. It’s never the wrong time to start looking after yourself. A really good sunscreen applied every day is an essential investment.

I’ve also just started over the past few weeks using Osmosis Correct serum and Clear activating mist. The aim, according to the lovely Leah at Haven is to normalise my skin, so the bits that are too oily and the bits that are too dry will meet in the middle.  I’ve been using the serum for a couple of weeks and so far the results are great – my skin feels smoother and definitely more balanced. I’m using it in preparation for an Osmosis infusion facial and I am really looking forward to seeing the results from that in a few weeks!

Whatever you do, enjoy yourself, be happy, and remember to embrace everything that is thrown your way! 

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