Tuesday, 23 January 2018

My Little Bits Of Budget Happiness

It's no secret that January is widely considered to be the most depressing month of the year, in fact I've written before about my own personal struggles with this time of year and the effect it seems to have on my mental health.

Whether or not you believe that Blue Monday is a real thing or that the seasons can truly have a detrimental effect on your mood, it goes without saying that the month after Christmas - when most of us are feeling the pinch on our purse strings and the weather is drab and damp - it can be more tricky than usual to entertain ourselves and stay happy.

Did you know that according to recent research by Ferratum, 1 in 3 millennials would borrow money in order to avoid FOMO? (that's Fear Of Missing Out for the 30-somethings and above among us!)

Don't get me wrong, I can totally understand the temptation and I have been known to borrow money from the good old Bank Of Mum & Dad in my younger days to avoid missing out on a gig with my friends (Using the word "gig" to describe the Mizz magazine roadshow makes it sound so much cooler than it was, doesn't it?!) but nowadays I tend to find ways to cheer myself up at home instead.

Here are a few of the ways I do just that, that don't cost a penny!

1. Have A Pamper Night At Home

When you spend your days running around after tiny terrors, even the most simple of treats feel like a real indulgence which is why one of my absolute favourite ways to brighten up a tough day is to just take an hour to myself once they're all tucked up in bed (eventually!).

I love nothing more than to run a nice hot bubble bath, dig out a face mask (or make my own if there's none in!), pop some cucumber or teabags on my eyes, put a bit of relaxing music on, maybe even light a scented candle and drift away with my thoughts for a while.

Following a 20 minute relaxation session with a bit of eyebrow plucking and nail painting can honestly leave me feeling like a new woman! And its so much cheaper than actually going to a beauty salon.

2. Curl Up With A Favourite Movie

If you have a Netflix or Amazon Prime subscription, this doesn't need to cost anything extra but if not...dig through your DVD collection, see whats playing on TV or borrow a movie from a friend if need be. Just spend some time watching something you know and love...something that you know isn't going to require a lot of attention, something that's going to make you feel comforted!

If movies aren't your bag, re-reading a favourite book can have just the same effect - its all about submerging yourself in something familiar and comfortable. Go the whole hog and wrap yourself in a nice cosy blanket with a mug of hot chocolate too...make the most of it!

3. Reminisce! 

Whether it's getting out my old photo albums and re-living some of my favourite past memories, or putting on some old favourite tunes from back in the day - there's a lot to be said for spending some time just thinking about some of your favourite memories and reliving them a little.

An evening spent listening to Take That and East 17 is an evening well spent in my house!

4. Practise A Bit Of Self Care

Nothing extreme...but just little moments of indulgence here and there can really go a long way to making your bad day just a little bit better.

Do whatever you can to be kind to yourself when the going is a bit rough - whether it's lingering for a little longer than usual in the shower and just taking the time to appreciate the feel of the water on your skin, or treating to yourself to some nice biscuits with a cuppa in your favourite mug - whatever you can do to lift your spirits a bit, take the time to do it.

Treat yourself as you'd treat a loved one who was feeling under the weather - you'd wrap them up warm and snug, run them a nice bath, make them a drink - so do these things for yourself. Look after you for a change.

5. Reconnect With An Old Friend

Thanks to the joys of modern technology, its easier than ever before to reconnect with people that we perhaps don't see as often as we'd like to anymore.

Take an hour out to Facetime with a friend you haven't seen lately, or start a Facebook chat with your high school bestie to see what they're up to now - having a catch up with an old friend can be such a mood lifter!

What are your favourite ways to lift your mood on a budget? I'd love to hear about them!

*Collaborative post

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