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14 Fall Activities To Do Alone

14 Fall Activities To Do Alone

What do you think of when you think of fall? I think of changing colours, cozy textures and longer hours stargazing. If you love fall, and love doing things alone, then here’s 14 ideas for you.

1. Walk under a confetti of leaves

Autumn leaves are ethereal and beautiful. When you notice the wind blowing slightly, why not wrap up warm and stroll down a tree-lined avenue? There isn’t a more mindful exercise I can think of as walking through a confetti of golden and red leaves, feeling them brush past your skin, whilst hearing your feet crunch down the carpet of fallen leaves.

2. Mull your own (fermented) juice

Fall is all about warm spicy drinks. Where ginger, cinnamon and star aniseed infuse into wine, cider or juice and dance on your tastebuds. Throw in some demarara sugar, orange and lemon peel into a pot on low heat and you’re all set. Or, you can always buy a pre-made mulled spice mix.

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3. Cozy-fy your house and your body

What are your favourite textures when it gets cold? Cotton, wool, angora or a custom blend? Do you start to think of chunky knits too? Why not break out your collection of sweaters and coats to adorn your body? Then, get those blankets and winter cushions out of storage. Assemble your favourite candles and lamps, and turn your home into a vision of what Fall Coziness looks like.

4. Make a pinecone bird feeder

If you love wildlife, then this is for you. Mix 0.5 cup of shortening or peanut butter with 2.5 cups of raw oats, chopped up dried fruits, nuts and seeds. Cover a pinecone with the mixture, then tie it to a string, before suspending it from a tree branch. There, you have an autumn-worthy bird feeder.

5. Set your goals for the end of the year

As the end of the year draws near, sometimes we have goals that we’ve yet to start on. If so, ask yourself what you’d like to have achieved as 2015 closes, and then take steps to work towards that. Feeling unmotivated or procrastinating too much? Perhaps this guide on creating momentum and slaying procrastination may be of use.

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6. Bike to the woods

The energy of the woods changes with the seasons. In autumn, everything feels like they are in a state of transition, as though they are preparing for hibernation. Why not bike through the woods, or stroll leisurely. Take in your surroundings and see what animals you can spot. Bonus: Pick the berries and apples that you spot, to make a hearty pie with.

7. Eat your way through everything pumpkin and squash

Farmers’ markets in the fall are full of everything pumpkin and squash. It feels as though there are endless recipes available for these versatile fruits. Pumpkin and almond waffles. Squash and bacon risotto. Mauritian pumpkin curry. Why not visit a few farmers’ markets and open your tastebuds to the infinite world of pumpkin and squash?

8. Explore a nearby town or village

Is there any place nearby you’ve been wanting to explore? Fall is as great as any time to do so. Make a list of things you want to do in this place, decide on how you’ll get there, and off you go. May you have a beautiful fall-scented adventure there.

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9. Go apple picking

Did you know that there are more than 7,500 apple species in the world? Like grapes, cocoa and coffee, the different apple species are favoured for their taste, acidity and uses. If you love cider or apple-rich desserts, then a visit to an apple farm may be in store.

10. Visit a castle in the afternoon

Castles are full of history and mystery. You can spend hours exploring it, dining in it or taking part in the activities organised by the owners. In fall, visiting a castle in the afternoon means that the sun would have set by the time you’re finished. If you have a vivid imagination, it’s like stepping out into another world, possibly making your visit even more memorable.

11. Stock up on your cold weather reading

Where do you get your books from? Kindle? Second-hand bookstores? Libraries? Independent shops? If you like to read, snuggling under a blanket in fall by the fire and getting immersed in your book can be one of the best experiences ever. Especially if it’s raining outside and you’d love to stay in, sipping your drink-of-choice whilst soft jazz plays in the background.

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12. Roast pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin seeds are extremely nutritious and high in energy. What’s more, they taste fantastic. For every pumpkin you cook, you’ll find hundreds of seeds. Why not roast them at 350F for 15 minutes, letting the beautiful aromas waft through your house. Great flavours include chilli oil, paprika and sea salt; fennel and garlic oil; and salted caramel and ginger.

13. Go on a Ghost Walk in your town

Think you know your town really well and are bored of it? Well, think again. It probably has a fascinating (dark) history that only those who dig deep enough will know. How do you learn about it whilst having fun? Ghost Walk tours may be your answer. Find one, wear good walking shoes, and prepare to be spooked.

14. Curate your fall scents

What smells remind you of fall? For me, it’s baked pies, hearty stews and spiced drinks, as I move away from the crisp-er summer scents. Can you translate any of these smells into perfumes and essential oils? If yes, why not assemble a Fall Scent Collection. Burn them in the form of incense, pour a few drops onto your candles, and mix some into your body lotion to live and breathe your signature fall smell.

Featured photo credit: Single Apple Hanging from Tree/Ed Gregory via stokpic.com

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14 Fall Activities To Do Alone

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Last Updated on January 17, 2019

8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

Listen carefully:

We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

1. Pray Daily

You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

3. Smile Often

Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

4. Organize Your Working Desk

A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

How do you do that? This is my formula:

First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

8. Go Exercise

Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

The Bottom Line

It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

More Resources About Mindfulness

Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

Reference

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