As part of our Naturally Happy month, we’re choosing happiness and to help us along, we asked Wellbeing Escapes Founder, Stella Photi whose company specialises in healthy holidays and experiences to share her secrets for living a stress free, happy and healthy life.
Living a healthy balanced life when you’re busy isn’t always easy. Myself and the Wellbeing Escapes team all understand the importance of the pursuit of happiness. It’s something that can get lost in our day-to-day lives and we do our best to keep morale high! Personally, the things that make me happiest are first and foremost my dog Louis, he is pure without any agenda. I appreciate a beautiful piece of music; I love classical music and find that Mozart can lift me out of anything. I love my Neom Complete Bliss Bath & Shower Oil - I am seriously addicted to it - it is blissful and makes me very happy during my morning shower. I love learning new things and, if it wasn’t obvious enough already, exploring new places.
Here are some of the ways in which we can all ensure every day is a good day.
1. I wouldn’t simply call it meditation...
Having a healthy mind works in conjunction with having a healthy body. The opposite is also true but it cannot be achieved without an initial state of mindfulness. Sitting quietly and reconnecting with yourself is not easy for everyone but it is seldom that people actually do this. Fifteen minutes may seem like a long stint, but amongst what has to be achieved throughout the day, it is a brief window. Plus the benefits are numerous.
2. Hot water just got less boring...
One of the most valuable things we can do for our overall system is to drink hot water, lemon and honey. It is an amazing detoxification supplement to have before your day starts. The lemon provides the vitamin C whilst the honey helps give anti-bacterial properties. It is great for preventing colds as well as being hugely beneficial for your digestive system. And who doesn’t want a happy tummy?
3. Don’t start your day without...
We have heard it thousands of times over and yet so many of us still skip breakfast. If you don’t have the time to sit down and eat, ensure you bring healthy snacks to work. I usually eat a Bounce Ball to give me energy along with a piece of fruit. Most experts argue that eating 5 or 6 smaller healthy meals throughout the day will help you feel energised and at your best.
4. Workplace Wellbeing
If we all had the choice to not sit at a desk all day long, I am sure the sane majority would opt out of this. Sitting down all day is obviously not good for our health. My yoga teacher taught me a trick that I now apply every day. Using a yoga belt (or scarf), hold it stretched between your hands behind your shoulders and move over your head back and forth to unwind the tension. A couple of times a day are enough. It reminds you to slouch less and can make gradual but effective improvements for your posture.
I adore a good belly laugh. I am always trying to make my team laugh with anecdotes about my dog Louis. He is a regular at the office and we all share a soft-spot for him. He brings a lot of wellbeing into my life - through the walks we embark on to the way he defuses my stress with one look.
6. Get deep into relaxation with a massage
After a particularly hard week or if I feel prone to some TLC, I book myself in for a massage. Your mind simply stops thinking and you are immersed into the silky relaxed aura of the room. It helps me unknot tensions and is ideal for banishing any built-up headaches. My go-to people in London are Yan Sophkleous and the gifted Claire Farman.
7. Keep Active
I like to keep things varied. I take Louis for walks, get a little more toned before a holiday at Ten Pilates, giggle my way through a Zumba class and practice yoga.
8. Become the sponge and soak up all you can learn
I really believe in boosting wellbeing through learning. Right now I am reading a book called Vedanta Philosophy, inspired by my trip to India. It’s full of practical content on how to live a contended, successful and happy life. I also love getting creative in the kitchen and learning new recipes, often adapting them to make them as healthy as possible. Learning can also be experienced in workshops and classes - as well as gaining new skills your social life will be on the up.
Immerse yourself amongst nature as much as possible. City life doesn’t make this necessarily easy but we are not completely starved of it. Getting outside in your favourite park or personal space is something we shouldn’t lose sight of. I always feel so much more refreshed and alive after spending time outdoors.