If you want to feel your best and think clearly, it’s important to create a living space that’s clean and tidy. If your drawers are bursting with creased clothes, it’s a challenge to choose the day’s outfit. If the kitchen cabinets are disorganized, you’ll waste time when you’re preparing meals. If the children’s rooms are cluttered with toys, you’re likely to lose patience when doing housekeeping chores. These situations give rise to needless stress. Obviously, you can’t expect to get everything arranged and sorted in just one weekend.
Take a month and set yourself a goal that’s specific and realistic. Go step by step and tackle a new drawer or closet each day. In a few weeks, by spending an hour a day at most, you won’t recognize your newly uncluttered interior.
Organisation is a fine art in Japan. Marie Kondo, the doyenne of “made in Japan” organisational consultation, believes that living in an orderly home has a positive influence on every other aspect of your life. In her bestselling The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, she advises getting started by throwing things away. Don’t hold back, and retain nothing that doesn’t bring you joy.
Don’t hold back, retain nothing that doesn’t bring you joy
Dust Yourself Off
Standing with my feet the same distance apart as my hips, I close my eyes for a few moments to experience the feeling of my feet in contact with the ground, my bodily sensations, and my breathing. With my eyes open or closed, I press my palms together and rub them until I feel the warmth in my hands, and then I rest them on top of my head. Next, I gently use my fingers and palms to brush away all the imaginary “dust” that I have on me, breathing deeply all the time.
I begin with my hair, eyebrows, eyelids, nose, cheeks, mouth, and ears. Then my neck, shoulders, and arms all the way to my fingertips, the back, chest, stomach, pelvis, hips, buttocks, right leg, left leg, feet, above and below. I take my time while making my movements vigorous and energetic.
Then I roll my back and hold my arms beside my body, combining this movement with deep abdominal breathing. I observe the changes in my bodily sensations, my emotions, my body temperature, my breathing. Doing this exercise in the morning sets you up for a great day.
Observe the changes in your bodily sensations
a Spiritual Detox
If combined with physical activity, such as brisk walking or swimming, a good nutritional detox should also have a spiritual side. Here are some simple steps to help you shake bad habits and regain your inner radiance:
→ Rediscover quality sleep by going to bed early
→ Start a private journal and write in it regularly
→ Allocate time for quiet reflection
→ Ignore sensational news coverage and disturbing information
→ Turn your cell phone off at night
→ Pay attention to what your dreams are telling you
→ Take time to enjoy the beauties of the natural world
Hug a Tree
In my opinion, hugging a tree is the very best way to feel at one with nature and draw upon its strength. Find a tree that inspires you, in a garden, park, or forest. Go ahead – clasp your arms around it tightly as if you were lovingly embracing someone dear to you. Press your ear against the trunk to sense its inner life.
Tree hugging may seem odd at first, but it’s based on scientific studies. Trees are actually central to our very existence because they convert carbon dioxide into the oxygen that we need every day. So, if we get it at the source, this essential force will have a genuine impact on the stress levels in our minds, as well as the oxygen levels in our tissues.
Are you truly appreciating the beautiful landscapes before you?
Everything seems to happen too fast in modern life. It’s important to try to cultivate compassion toward others. Take time to listen closely to friends and family, as well as to new acquaintances who come your way. It’s also an opportunity to put your whole heart into your activities and make the most of every minute.
- Are you genuinely relishing every good meal that’s served to you or that you’ve patiently prepared?
- Are you really listening to your favorite music without letting yourself be distracted?
- Are you truly appreciating the beautiful landscapes before you?
A shady forest, a field of sunflowers, shimmering reflections in a lake. Sometimes it’s important to do something for others and expect nothing in return. Simple spontaneous acts, like offering a sincere compliment, or telling a close friend how much she means to you. Why not pay for the coffee that your neighbor at the next table just ordered? These are simple acts of kindness whose sole purpose is to give a little happiness to others.
Simple acts of kindness whose sole purpose is to give a little happiness to others
It’s easier to reconnect with nature when the weather’s lovely outside. Put your shoes away on evenings and weekends and let your feet experience a breath of fresh air. Did you know that putting your feet in contact with the earth has a calming effect and helps you recover your sense of equilibrium?
What’s more, it helps the body rid itself of all those electromagnetic waves emitted by the cell phones and computers that surround us every day. It goes without saying that your open-air strolls should be enjoyed without those online accessories! Take the chance to revive all of your senses: listen to birdsong, breathe in the fresh air, contemplate the skies, savor a wild berry, feel the rough bark of a tree.
It goes without saying that your open-air strolls should be enjoyed without those online accessories! Take the chance to revive all of your senses: listen to birdsong, breathe in the fresh air, contemplate the skies, savor a wild berry, feel the rough bark of a tree.
Ten ways to generate good vibrations
- Offer a compliment
- Encourage someone close to you
- Offer to buy a stranger a coffee
- Tell your friends how much you really care
- Wear a t-shirt with a positive message
- Give someone a smile without expecting one back
- Read for pleasure
- Dance to your favorite summer hit
- Give yourself a break
- Above all, don’t feel guilty
Don’t expect me to reveal my top model diet tips. I don’t have any and I never have. Frankly, I am pretty much against dieting. Professionally, I’ve had the good fortune of belonging to a generation of models with curvaceous figures, at a time when young girls weren’t pushed toward anorexia.
These days, if I find I’ve gained extra pounds, I simply eat a bit less and exercise a bit more. The pounds you might be able to lose with a draconian diet will always come back.
In Praise of Silence
Close your eyes, center yourself, and focus. If you don’t hear anything, that’s good. Our houses and apartments are filled with background noise from appliances, televisions, and telephones that pollute our sound environment.
Silence is a precious gift. It allows us to listen to our own inner voice, revealing what we truly desire, not just what others have come to expect from us. Whenever you can, try to find a tranquil, peaceful spot for a moment of respite.
Sometimes it’s essential to take some uncluttered time and replenish the inner self. It makes no sense to be endlessly, needlessly, busy. Don’t dread the occasional idle interlude. Relish the silence and a fleeting moment of solitude – you’ll feel renewed and revitalised
Silence is a precious gift
Learning How to Say No to Yourself
We often hear how important it is to say no to others, or reject certain situations or obligations. But the one person we rarely say no to is our own self.
- No, I’m not going to deal with those bills now.
- No, I’m not going to wash the dishes right away.
- Right now, I’m going to take a moment to enjoy myself.
- I’m going to watch a good film, have coffee with a friend, play a sport I love. I’ll make myself the priority!
Unless you’re Superwoman, it’s impossible for you to have everything perfect and under control all the time. Learning how to postpone some chores is an essential first step in discovering how to unwind.
My Creative Vision of a Better Life
Suppose we took advantage of long winter evenings to visualise our most deeply desired goals, dreams, and longings. It’s a simple idea; all you do is identify these wishes as clearly as you can and embrace the belief that we have power over our own lives. The subconscious will direct you toward the actions that will transform your aspirations into reality.
And here’s some good news – this exercise in creative visualisation costs no more than the price of paper, scissors, and glue. Envisioning success requires no investment whatsoever, except some time and reflection. It’s best to do this on your own, or with close friends, having first collected together old newspapers and magazines.
To begin, decide how you will undertake the project:
→ Use an entire wall in your home?
→ A large white or colored piece of cardboard?
→ A little compartmented file that you can easily carry with you?
All you have to do is post drawings, photos, and quotations that inspire you. What makes you dream? Write down words that motivate you. Try to always formulate your thoughts positively, picturing yourself surrounded by abundance rather than deprivation.
The objective is to reflect sincerely and profoundly on your deepest longings, whether in private or professional spheres, in family life, romance, or any other area of your life that is important to you.
It’s up to you to take charge of your life.
self care: BEAUTY TIPS
Whether you’re a blonde, brunette, or redhead, my top anti-aging hint is to choose the right hair color. Avoid shades that are too dark or uniform – these can add years to you. The most becoming color will be intense and radiant, with complementary tones that create attractive highlights. But stay away from rainbow color hair dyes – they are rarely flattering!
Your skin needs daily moisturizing after you shower, especially if you want to preserve a youthful complexion. You can add fragrance to it with any of your favorite essential oils. It’s my idea of magic, whether you use it to moisturize your skin or perfume your linen.
When we find ourselves looking a bit pale in winter, there’s a tendency to use a foundation that’s too dark. This is a mistake – it will emphasize wrinkles and add years to your appearance. It’s all right to use pressed powder to conceal small imperfections, especially in the T-zone (forehead and nose), and very lightly under the eyes. This is the most delicate part of the face and I recommend a good dark circle concealer.
You don’t need a big beauty budget to have lovely skin. Here’s a simple, easily prepared recipe to care for your skin and minimize pores. Just combine 1 beaten egg white, the juice of half a lemon, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. In a few minutes you’ll have a rich anti-wrinkle mask. Leave it on your skin for 20 minutes and then rinse with fresh water. The protein in the egg white is guaranteed to have a lifting effect.
Adapted from Mindful Beauty: How to Look and Feel Great in Every Season by Estelle Lefébure (Flammarion, £16).