We may be halfway through the month but there’s a never better day to start doing better, brighter things for yourself.

Try these simple ideas to find more time for yourself and to focus on what really counts.

Start reading again. Although we do not think that books ever went out of fashion, we do think we need to read more. Disconnect for an hour each day to pick up a paperback and live another story. Reading books has also been associated with literally ‘lighting up’ your brain. So, not only do you enhance your knowledge, reading also improves brain function.

Re-evaluate your social circle. We live in a world where we often recognize each other by our social media handles. A robust social media feed is often an indicator of our personal and professional success. Make a conscious effort to reconnect with those who add value and meaning to your life, as opposed to those who are just there for the show. Do not hesitate to send the first message to a friend to meet up!

Start saying NO more often With the line between work and home becoming increasingly blurred, we often find ourselves stretching our physical and mental health boundaries. Draw the line with your boss and colleagues about when you are not available to meet or talk shop. The same goes for any other situation that makes you uneasy to be a part of.

Start creating. This could be anything, really. Working with our hands and ‘creating’ things is highly therapeutic. Think journals, cooking, coloring, gardening or even putting together Lego. Not only will creative activities help you step away from the different screens we are committed to, they are also a great way to destress. Print a couple of mandalas from the internet, start coloring and watch the stress disappear.

Invest in experiences, not materials. Spend your hard earned money on creating memorable experiences for yourself and your loved ones. Save up for holidays, staycations and maybe even house renovation, thereby creating memories and experiences that you will cherish for a long time to come. Also, happiness shared is happiness doubled, so it is a good investment for your hard earned cash.

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