Everyday wellness

Realistic wellbeing and kindness to oneself: simple and easy ways to introduce more wellness into your world. By Zoe Warren

We would all love to have much more time to spend taking better care of ourselves. Perhaps it would be doing hours of yoga every day, delving into meditation practices, or only eating organic vegetables from dawn until dusk?

For most of us, however, this is an unrealistic way to live alongside all the other demands in life such as jobs, homes, rents, children, parents, and the endless daily life admin! The more we see in print or online of people supposedly living this type of lifestyle or trying to sell us this type of wellness package the more of a failure it can make us feel.

Our days are often busy and the amount that we need to give out to others is often so big that by the end of the day there is no time or energy to fully give to ourselves.

I love the idea of realistic wellbeing. Of making simple, small and achievable shifts within our day-to-day life so that wellbeing and happiness seeps in without us really noticing and without us paying a fortune for the privilege. Making subtle shifts of perspective and tiny changes to our habits can start to allow a little more joy and vitality into each day and as we only have one shot at this life who would say no to a little extra joy?

So often when we try to make new wellbeing habits we make them too big. We say we will run every day for an hour or go to a gym four times a week or have a fresh juice every single morning. But these changes are big and difficult to keep up with and so after a few days, or a few weeks, they fizzle out again and we are back where we started. This can make us feel like a failure and then the cycle often continues and we set more challenges that we won't achieve.

By making tiny manageable changes and adding little doses of kindness and joy into our lives rather than restricting ourselves we have a much bigger chance of succeeding in keeping them going and then, if we want to, we can build up from there.

Ideas of little changes we can all realistically make:

  • Get up just five minutes earlier each morning to stretch, wriggle and breathe into your body before getting changed.
  • Hold your own eye contact in the mirror for two minutes each morning seeing yourself with genuine kindness and compassion.
  • Dance around the kitchen to your favourite song (this is my personal favourite and gives our whole family a much happier start to the day).
  • Keep phones out of the bedroom.
  • Eat one more piece of veg or fruit every day.
  • Close your eyes and savour your first cup of coffee.
  • Walk or run outside every day even if its just a few minutes.
  • Have a phone-free hour each day.
  • Do something creative in the evening, doodle, experiment with clay or colouring in.
  • Give yourself a two minute shoulder or foot massage with some oil after your bath.
  • Allow a few minutes of slow, conscious breathing before bed.
  • Write down all the things you were grateful for at the end of each day.

Pick one or two of these little changes and try and add them in most days until they become an ingrained habit just like brushing your teeth. Once we start implementing a few small changes like this we begin to take control our our day rather than rushing past every moment and letting the day and the stresses it can contain get the better of us. We allow little pauses where we slow down or check in and remind ourselves of what is important. When we stick to these tiny new habits we start to trust in ourselves a little more. If we trust ourselves more, we tend to like ourselves more and if we like ourselves more we may do more kind things for ourselves, it can be a snowball effect.

Learning to implement little moments of kindness into our day is not only hugely important for our own wellbeing but it will also teach the next generation through our actions that self-care is an achievable and non-negotiable part of day to day life.

Tiny changes really can make big improvements to our wellbeing, self-worth, and mental health.

Which two will you choose to start with?

Conscious movement and how to add it to your daily life

So often when we move our bodies or exercise nowadays we fill the moment with other noise; perhaps we call a friend when we walk or listen to music as we exercise. With technology advancing we are rarely offline for a minute and our brains are needing to flip from one focus to another quicker and quicker every day, jamming each minute full to the brim and often overwhelming our mind and our nervous system.

A lovely way of practicing mindfulness and allowing gratitude to seep in without having to sit still for hours is to simply drop into the present moment when we are moving our bodies. Whether it is a walk, a run or a cycle, can we avoid doing anything else at the same time and encourage our brain to soaking up everything about that experience? For me, this holds a lot more meaning when I am outside. I might notice the cooler air against my skin and the way my feet hit the uneven ground; I can feel my body start to warm up and my heart rate and my breath change. I immerse myself in the moment as much as possible and really notice what it feels like to move, to breathe, to be in nature and to have life.

It is such a gift to have bodies that we can move and yet more often than not we rush past this experience and fill it with distractions. Let's make our movement, whether extreme or gentle, become a regular practice of gratitude and mindfulness leaving us feeling more balanced, refreshed and connected to the present moment.

Zoe Warren is the founder of Peachy With Zoe (, a wellness brand offering a fresh way to maintain physical and mental health in a fun, easygoing and mindful way. Connect on Instagram @peachywithzoe

Om Magazine

First published in November 2009, OM Yoga magazine has become the most popular yoga title in the UK. Available from all major supermarkets, independents and newsstands across the UK. Also available on all digital platforms.