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15 Cultural Date Ideas in Surrey That Won’t Cost a Penny

15 Cultural Date Ideas in Surrey That Won’t Cost a Penny

Culture lovers can enjoy amazing dates in Surrey without having to open their wallets at all. From learning about the local history to taking in breathtaking views, below are 15 great ideas for cultural dates that will help you impress your date. Meet new people, learn new skills and expand your mind, all for free.

1. Explore Guildford House Gallery

Guildford House Gallery

    This quaint and beautiful little gallery offers changing exhibitions and is housed within a gorgeous seventeenth-century building. This gallery is sure to impress your date. In addition to exploring the Gallery for free, you can take advantage of workshops and talks for further learning. Refreshments are available for sale in a tranquil café set in the rear courtyard.

    2. Take a spin around Mercedes-Benz World

    The Exterior of Mercedes Benz world taken the evening the Star was installed.

      Mercedes-Benz World is a fantastic place to impress a car-loving date, and it is completely free. See some of the inner workings of Mercedes-Benz vehicles and take a look at some classic cars.

      3. Delve into local heritage at Guildford Museum

      Guildford House Museum

        Situated in Castle Arch, this museum is the perfect place to learn more about the rich history of Surrey. If you and your date are both Guildford residents, why not discover more about your common roots? Or, if they are coming to this town from further afield, you can use the museum visit as a way to show them a little more about the heritage of your home town.

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        4. Stand on the site of a pivotal agreement at Runnymede

          What more momentous place to take a date than the site where the Magna Carta was signed? If you really want to impress your date, why not read up on the history of the Magna Carta beforehand so that you can regale them with your knowledge when you arrive. As well as being a National Trust site, Runnymede is very beautiful spot for a picnic. This will be a successful date, signed, sealed, delivered!

          5. Learn about Victorian inventions at the Museum of Farnham

          Museum of Farnham

            This quaint and charming little museum is an ideal stopping-off point during a romantic country walk. The museum, which focuses on the history of Farnham starting in prehistoric times, is located within a beautiful Georgian house dating back to 1718. This makes it a very historic location for a date. The museum sponsors the work of local artists, so you can view local contemporary art in this museum as well. Therefore, this is a great location for a date that fuses culture from centuries ago with the art and creativity of today.

            6. Try a spot of birdwatching

            Frensham Little Pond

              Head down to Frensham Little Pond, which is a popular site for grebes, buntings, and warblers as well as romantic couples, and do a spot of bird watching with your date. Getting out into nature can be so romantic, and there is something about having to stay still and quiet with your date to avoid scaring the birds away that can be very thrilling.

              7. Show your softer side and pet some cute animals

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                Head down Head to RSPCA Millbrook to meet some cute ducklings, puppies, kittens and more. There are also usually some lovely little ponies here, too. If you choose this as a destination for a date, be prepared to fall in love with more than just your date!

                8. Go for a stroll at Virginia Water

                  This gorgeous lake is a prime location for a romantic stroll. Why not pack a picnic or simply bring along a bottle of bubbly and enjoy some quality time with someone that you have met on a Surrey dating site? If you like, you can show your date some of the key points of interest around the lake, such as a 100 foot high totem pole, an obelisk that was erected by none other than George II, and the remnants of an ancient North African city (which has been shipped over to Britain and reconstructed). This is also a lovely place for a spot of bird watching.

                  9. Get Shakespearean in Windsor Great Park

                    This beautiful park has some great cycling routes, and you can gain extra points by quoting from The Merry Wives of Windsor whilst you are there. The next time that you are chatting with Surrey singles on a dating site, why not ask them how they feel about a leisurely glide on a bike through some gorgeous park scenery? Perhaps you can also stop for a picnic on the way.

                    10. Engage with interactive contemporary art at The Lightbox

                      The Lightbox is a fresh new take on the classic museum space. It is renowned for its interactive exhibitions, which change regularly throughout the year. Boutique-like in appearance, and innovative in terms of what it presents you with, The Lightbox is the ideal location for a date with one of your fellow culture lovers in Surrey.

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                      11. Explore behind the scenes at Grayshott Pottery

                      Grayshott Pottery Gallery

                        If you meet someone in Surrey who is a hands-on, artistic type, why not take them on a tour of the famous Grayshott Pottery workshop? These tours typically take around half an hour and provide you with a fascinating insight into how pottery and artistic hand-decorated ceramics are created here.

                        12. Marvel at the history of Farnham Castle Keep

                        Farnham Castle Keep

                          This superb dating location was founded way back in 1138. Therefore, it is steeped in history and is an excellent place to bring a culture lover, especially someone who loves their medieval history. There is also plenty of Civil War material to be discovered here as well. It’s a real treasure trove of stories, artefacts, and amazing architecture.

                          13. Take an elegant stroll in Priory Park

                          Reigate Priory Park

                            You and your date can enjoy a picnic amid some stunning scenery in the formal gardens of Priory Park in Reigate, perhaps whilst discussing the finer points of garden design.

                            14. Roam through the grounds of Guildford Castle

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                              This is another fantastic option for lovers of medieval history. Guildford Castle was built not too long after the Norman Conquest, which means that it is steeped in centuries of history. It is totally free to wander around the grounds of this castle, and the castle is located very close to the town centre in Guildford as well, so you can combine your cultural visit to the castle with a trip to a museum.

                              15. Relax in the East Surrey Museum

                              East Surrey Museum

                                Treat the culture lover that you have met online to a visit to the East Surrey Museum, which has no entry fee, boasts four separate exhibition rooms, and is conveniently located near the town centre in Caterham. To finish your date, why not wander around the lovely town for some window shopping?

                                Introduce some cultural but affordable dating options into your Surrey dating life; you and your date will be sure to have fun whatever the cost.

                                Image Credit: Mercedes Benz World via businessatbrooklands.co.uk; Guildford Castle via exploringsurreyspast.org.uk; Couple with cat via pestell.com; waterfall via windsorgreatpark.co.uk; Windsor Great Park via fabriciopretti.files.wordpress.com; Magna Carta via getsurrey.co.uk; The Lightbox Gallery via coolplaces.co.uk; Pottery pieces via http://www.cbasouth-east.org; Bird flock via Stocksnap.io; Reigate Priory Park via picturesofengland.com; Noah’s Ark via farnhammaltings.com; Farnham Castle Keep via english-heritage.org.uk; Grayshott Pottery via grayshottpottery.com; Guildford House Gallery via guildford.gov.uk; Guildford Museum via gettyimages.com.

                                Featured photo credit: Unknown via windsorgreatpark.co.uk

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                                Published on November 14, 2018

                                Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                                Why You Suffer from Constant Fatigue and How to Deal with It

                                With our busy, always on lives, it seems that more and more of us are facing constant tiredness and fatigue on a regular basis.

                                For many people, they just take this in their stride as part of modern life, but for others the impact can be crippling and can have a serious effect on their sense of wellbeing, health and productivity.

                                In this article, I’ll share some of the most common causes of constant tiredness and fatigue and give you some guidance and action steps you can take to overcome some of the symptoms of fatigue.

                                Why Am I Feeling Fatigued?

                                Fatigue is extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness.  It is a reduction in the efficiency of a muscle or organ after prolonged activity.[1]

                                It can affect anyone, and most adults will experience fatigue at some point in their life. 

                                For many people, fatigue is caused by a combination of lifestyle, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues rather than an underlying medical condition.

                                Although fatigue is sometimes described as tiredness, it is different to just feeling tired or sleepy. Everyone feels tired at some point, but this is usually resolved with a nap or a few nights of good sleep. Someone who is sleepy may also feel temporarily refreshed after exercising. If you are getting enough sleep, good nutrition and exercising regularly but still find it hard to perform, concentrate or be motivated at your normal levels, you may be experiencing a level of fatigue that needs further investigation. 

                                Symptoms of Fatigue

                                Fatigue can cause a vast range of physical, mental and emotional symptoms including:

                                • chronic tiredness, exhaustion or sleepiness
                                • mental blocks
                                • lack of motivation
                                • headache
                                • dizziness
                                • muscle weakness
                                • slowed reflexes and responses
                                • impaired decision-making and judgement
                                • moodiness, such as irritability
                                • impaired hand-to-eye coordination
                                • reduced immune system function
                                • blurry vision
                                • short-term memory problems
                                • poor concentration
                                • reduced ability to pay attention to the situation at hand

                                Causes of Fatigue

                                The wide range of causes that can trigger fatigue include:

                                • Medical causes: Constant exhaustion, tiredness and fatigue may be a sign of an underlying illness, such as a thyroid disorder, heart disease, anemia or diabetes.
                                • Lifestyle-related causes: Being overweight and a lack of regular exercise can lead to feelings of fatigue.  Lack of sleep and overcommitting can also create feelings of excessive tiredness and fatigue.
                                • Workplace-related causes: Workplace and financial stress in a variety of forms can lead to feelings of fatigue.
                                • Emotional concerns and stress: Fatigue is a common symptom of mental health problems, such as depression and grief, and may be accompanied by other signs and symptoms, including irritability and lack of motivation.

                                Fatigue can also be caused by a number of factors working in combination.

                                Medical Causes of Fatigue

                                If you have made lifestyle changes to increase your energy and still feel exhausted and fatigued, it may be time to seek guidance from your doctor.

                                Here are a few examples of illnesses that can cause ongoing fatigue. Seek medical advice if you suspect you have a health problem:

                                Anemia

                                Anemia is a condition in which you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to the body’s tissues. It is a common cause of fatigue in women.

                                Having anemia may make you feel tired and weak.

                                There are many forms of anemia, each with its own cause. Anemia can be temporary or long term, and it can range from mild to severe.[2]

                                Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

                                Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a condition that can cause persistent, unexplained fatigue that interferes with daily activities for more than six months.

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                                This is a chronic condition with no one-size-fits-all treatment, but lifestyle changes can often help ease some symptoms of fatigue.[3]

                                Diabetes

                                Diabetes can cause fatigue with either high or low blood sugars. When your sugars are high, they remain in the bloodstream instead of being used for energy, which makes you feel fatigued. Low blood sugar (glucose) means you may not have enough fuel for energy, also causing fatigue.[4]

                                Sleep Apnea

                                Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder where sufferers briefly stop breathing for short periods during sleep. Most people are not aware this is happening, but it can cause loud snoring, and daytime fatigue.

                                Being overweight, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all worsen the symptoms of sleep apnea.[5]

                                Thyroid disease

                                An underactive thyroid gland means you have too little thyroid hormone (thyroxine) in your body. This makes you feel tired and you could also put on weight and have aching muscles and dry skin.[6]

                                Common lifestyle factors that can cause fatigue include:

                                • Lack of sleep
                                • Too much sleep 
                                • Alcohol and drugs 
                                • Sleep disturbances 
                                • Lack of regular exercise and sedentary behaviour 
                                • Poor diet 

                                Common workplace issues that can cause fatigue include:

                                • Shift work: Our body is designed to sleep during the night. A shift worker may confuse their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be asleep.
                                • Poor workplace practices: This may include long work hours, hard physical labour, irregular working hours (such as rotating shifts), a stressful work environment, boredom or working alone. 
                                • Workplace stress – This can be caused by a wide range of factors including job dissatisfaction, heavy workload, conflicts with bosses or colleagues, bullying, or threats to job security.
                                • Burnout: This could be striving too hard on one area of your life while neglecting others, which leads to a life that feels out of balance.

                                Psychological Causes of Fatigue

                                Psychological factors are present in many cases of extreme tiredness and fatigue.  These may include:

                                • Depression: Depression is characterised by severe and prolonged feelings of sadness, dejection and hopelessness. People who are depressed commonly experience chronic fatigue.
                                • Anxiety and stress: Someone who is constantly anxious or stressed keeps their body in overdrive. The constant flooding of adrenaline exhausts the body, and fatigue sets in.
                                • Grief: Losing a loved one causes a wide range of emotions including shock, guilt, depression, despair and loneliness.

                                How to Tackle Constant Fatigue

                                Here are 12 ways you can start tackling the causes of fatigue and start feeling more energetic.

                                1. Tell The Truth

                                Some people can numb themselves to the fact that they are overtired or fatigued all the time. In the long run, this won’t help you.

                                To give you the best chance to overcome or eliminate fatigue, you must diagnose and tell the truth about the things that are draining your energy, making you tired or causing constant fatigue.

                                Once you’re honest with yourself about the activities you’re doing in your life that you find irritating, energy-draining, and make you tired on a regular basis you can make a commitment to stop doing them.

                                The help that you need to overcome fatigue is available to you, but not until you tell the truth about it. The first person you have to sell on getting rid of the causes of fatigue is yourself.

                                One starting point is to diagnose the symptoms. When you start feeling stressed, overtired or just not operating at your normal energy levels make a note of:

                                • How you feel
                                • What time of day it is
                                • What may have contributed to your fatigue
                                • How your mind and body reacts

                                This analysis may help you identify, understand and then eliminate very specific causes.

                                2. Reduce Your Commitments

                                When we have too many things on our plate personally and professionally, we can feel overstretched, causing physical and mental fatigue.

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                                If you have committed to things you really don’t want to do, this causes irritability and low emotional engagement. Stack these up throughout your day and week, then your stress levels will rise.

                                When these commitments have deadlines associated with them, you may be trying to cram in far too much in a short period of time.  This creates more stress and can affect your decision making ability.

                                Start being realistic about how much you can get done. Either reduce the commitments you have or give yourself more time to complete them in.

                                3. Get Clear On Your Priorities

                                If working on your list of to-do’s or goals becomes too overwhelming, start reducing and prioritizing the things that matter most.

                                Start with prioritizing just 3 things every day. When you complete those 3 things, you’ll get a rush of energy and your confidence will grow.

                                If you’re trying to juggle too many things and are multi-tasking, your energy levels will drop and you’ll struggle to maintain focus.

                                Unfinished projects can make you self-critical and feel guilty which drops energy levels further, creating inaction.

                                Make a list of your 3 MIT (Most Important Tasks) for the next day before you go to bed. This will stop you overcommitting and get you excited about what the next day can bring.

                                4. Express More Gratitude

                                Gratitude and confidence are heavily linked. Just being thankful for what you have and what you’ve achieved increases confidence and makes you feel more optimistic.

                                It can help you improve your sense of wellbeing, which can bring on feelings of joy and enthusiasm.

                                Try starting a gratitude journal or just note down 3 things you’re grateful for every day.

                                5. Focus On Yourself

                                Exhaustion and fatigue can arrive by focusing solely on other people’s needs all the time, rather than worrying about and focusing on what you need (and want).

                                There are work commitments, family commitments, social commitments. You may start with the best intentions, to put in your best performance at work, to be an amazing parent and friend, to simply help others.

                                But sometimes, we extend ourselves too much and go beyond our personal limits to help others. That’s when constant exhaustion can creep up on us.  Which can make us more fatigued.

                                We all want to help and do our best for others, but there needs to be some balance. We also need to take some time out just for ourselves to recharge and rejuvenate.

                                6. Set Aside Rest and Recovery Time

                                Whether it’s a couple of hours, a day off, a mini-break or a proper holiday, time off is essential to help us recover, recharge and refocus.

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                                Recovery time helps fend off mental fatigue and allows us to simply kick back and relax.

                                The key here, though, is to remove ourselves from the daily challenges that bring on tiredness and fatigue. Here’s how.

                                Can you free yourself up completely from work and personal obligations to just rest and recover?

                                7. Take a Power Nap

                                When you’re feeling tired or fatigued and you have the ability to take a quick 20-minute nap, it could make a big difference to your performance for the rest of the day.

                                Napping can improve learning, memory and boost your energy levels quickly.

                                This article on the benefit of napping is a useful place to start if you want to learn more: How a 20-Minute Nap at Work Makes You Awake and Productive the Whole Day

                                8. Take More Exercise

                                The simple act of introducing some form of physical activity into your day can make a huge difference. It can boost energy levels, make you feel much better about yourself and can help you avoid fatigue.

                                Find something that fits into your life, be that walking, going to the gym, running or swimming. 

                                The key is to ensure the exercise is regular and that you are emotionally engaged and committed to stick with it.

                                You could also walk more which will help clear your head and shift your focus away from stressful thoughts.

                                9. Get More Quality Sleep

                                To avoid tiredness, exhaustion and fatigue, getting enough quality sleep matters. 

                                Your body needs sleep to recharge.  Getting the right amount of sleep every night can improve your health, reduce stress levels and help us improve our memory and learning skills.

                                My previous article on The Benefits of Sleep You Need to Know will give you some action steps to start improving your sleep. 

                                10. Improve Your Diet

                                Heavy or fatty meals can make you feel sluggish and tired, whilst some foods or eating strategies do just the opposite.

                                Our always on lives have us reaching for sweets or other sugary snacks to give us a burst of energy to keep going. Unfortunately, that boost fades quickly which can leave you feeling depleted and wanting more.

                                On the other hand, whole grains and healthy unsaturated fats supply the reserves you can draw on throughout the day.

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                                To keep energy up and steady, it’s a good idea to limit refined sugar and starches.

                                Eating small meals and healthy snacks every few hours throughout the day provides a steady supply of nutrients to body and brain. It’s also important not to skip breakfast.

                                Eating a balanced diet helps keep your blood sugar in a normal range and prevents that sluggish feeling when your blood sugar drops.

                                11. Manage Your Stress Levels

                                Stress is one of the leading causes of exhaustion and fatigue, and can seriously affect your health.

                                When you have increased levels of stress at work and at home, it’s easy to feel exhausted all the time. 

                                Identifying the causes of stress and then tackling the problems should be a priority. 

                                My article on How to Help Anxiety When Life is Stressing You Out shares 16 strategies you can use to overcome stress.

                                12. Get Hydrated

                                Sometimes we can be so busy that we forget to keep ourselves fully hydrated.

                                Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight and is essential in maintaining our body’s basic functions.

                                If we don’t have enough water, it can adversely affect our mental and physical performance, which leads to tiredness and fatigue.

                                The recommended daily amount is around two litres a day, so to stay well hydrated keep a water bottle with you as much as possible.

                                The Bottom Line

                                These 12 tips can help you reduce your tiredness and feeling of fatigue.  Some will work better than others as we are all different, whilst others can be incorporated together in your daily life.

                                If you’ve tried to make positive changes to reduce fatigue and you still feel tired and exhausted, it may be time to consider making an appointment with your doctor to discuss your condition.

                                Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com

                                Reference

                                [1]Oxford English Dictionary: Definition of fatigue
                                [2]NHS Choices: 10 Reasons for feeling tired
                                [3]Verywellhealth: What is chronic fatigue syndrome
                                [4]Everyday Health: Why does type 2 diabetes make you feel tired
                                [5]Mayo Clinic: Sleep apnea
                                [6]Harvard Health: The lowdown on thyroid slowdown

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