Last week my sweetheart and I headed up to Lewiston, CA—a tiny town in Northern California in the Trinity Alps where we got hitched a year and a half ago.
The place is magical…mountains surrounding, river in the backyard, big old house to ourselves, plush king-sized bed…
We went up to chillax—to go completely off the grid, submerse ourselves in nature, and reconnect with the lost art of experiencing pure pleasure and relaxation.
It was beautiful and much needed downtime, but I felt a twinge of anxiety begin to creep back in the day before we left…dreading a bit to go back to the busyness of the city.
So I was struck with asking myself the question: “How do I bring this feeling of expansion, spaciousness, relaxation and pleasure—AFTER I go off the grid, into my every day in the city?”
Here’s what I came up:
1. Continue immersing yourself in nature – Warm weather or cold, city or country, you can always find a way to bring a little more natural goodness into your day… Escape to the woods, hit up the beach, sit on a bench at the park and meditate (sunglasses work good for this), find a patch of grass, purchase an indoor tree—the possibilities are endless…and BONUS, being around plants helps people be more productive at home and in the workplace. Studies show that tasks performed while under the calming influence of nature are performed better and with greater accuracy…so feel free to get your nature on!
2. Take the back roads – Whether you live in a large city like San Francisco, or a small town like my home town Quincy, IL, traffic is always an issue and can seriously cramp your “off the grid” relaxed style. I make it a point, especially when I get home from an OTG trip, to take the quiet back roads. You’ll save yourself time, keep your sanity, ease into civilization and see pretty things you don’t see when taking the highway.
3. Create a Happy Hour writing ritual – Of course this is one of my faves. You know, right around the 4 or 5 o’clock hour when you’re getting antsy, but have a blog post to write and a few more emails to catch up on? Don’t fret…create your own happy hour ritual instead. Pour a cup of tea or bubbly, break out the olives, almonds and chocolate, light your favorite candle and take a deep, sweet breath. Ahhh, that’s better. :) Since I work at home, sometimes around this hour I love popping over to the café across the street for a glass of bubbly and a homemade Oreo cookie that’s ta die for…makes the rest of my day feel like a party. Get creative and let the pleasure in.
4. Set boundaries online, with your phone and social media – When I go off the grid, I try my best to be TRULY off the grid…which to me means no emails, phone calls, social media or texts. But boy, what a wake up call to come back to all that madness after being off for awhile—kinda like culture shock to the modern soul. I suggest easing back in by setting clear boundaries on these platforms. Turn your phone on silent mode while writing, creating or checking email, set a FB and SM time limit with yourself, and stick to it, check email less. You’ll get so much more done and won’t feel overwhelmed with too much virtual connection.
5. Take a relaxing bath in the middle of the day – Again, I work from home so this might not be possible for all of you, but for those of you entrepreneurs working from your nest, this is one of the most divine treats you can give to yourself. Drawing myself a scrumptious aromatherapy bath midday with a cuppa tea and candle lit, is so luxurious and one of my favorite pastimes…so much more enjoyable than taking the bath at night at the end of the day for some reason.
Try these pleasure-inducing tricks out for size and let the relaxation continue,
PS, Let us know what your favorite strategy for extending the off the grid pleasure on the comments section below.