Idon’t know about you but it’s about this time of year when I feel the pressure dial of life turning up. When I shared this with a friend they told me about Kelly McGonigal’s TED Talk ‘How to make stress your friend’. McGonigal tells us how stress is not all bad, in fact it can actually be good for us – it’s our attitude to it that can make a difference. Studies show that when you change your mind about stress, you can alter your body’s response to it. This has turned my thinking around and I definitely feel better for it. To find out more about this see Natalie Cyra’s story ‘The Other Side of Stress’ on page 28.
Of course if you’re already frazzled it is important to take a break. Having always read about yoga retreats in magazines I finally did one late last year – flying to Niue for five days with Wellness Retreats NZ. To say it was transformative is an understatement. I literally looked, and felt, like a different person by the end.
What did we do? Yoga twice daily on a deck overlooking the ocean; ate healthy and delicious meals; downed endless cups of herbal tea; swam, hiked and enjoyed the stunning clifftop location of Matavai Scenic Resort with a sunset cocktail. But most of all it was the digital detox that took off the pressure. There’s no mobile phone coverage on the island and only one-hour free wi-fi per day at the hotel.
I must admit that on arrival that discovery put me into a panicky spin but by day two I couldn’t get over how good it felt not to be shackled to my phone.
It was the perfect reset and provided the motivation to add healthy habits back into my regular routine – you know, the ones that go west when you get busy and overloaded – yoga, exercise, healthy food...
My trip to Niue also reminded me of the importance of taking time out for myself and doing things that nourish the spirit. Dunedin is a place that does that for me. This January was my 15th visit and I still haven’t seen and done everything I want to. Check out our Insider Guide to Dunedin on page 59 and don’t forget to enter the competition to win a trip for two to stay at Larnach Castle on the Otago Peninsula. It really is a magical place.
Another thing we focus on in this issue is e-bikes which are revolutionising the way we get around for a lot of reasons. You can find our guide to e-bikes on page 34. Riding an e-bike is not only good for the planet but for you too. Incidential exercise has never looked so good!
Matapa Chasm Good editor Carolyn Enting at Matapa Chasm, Niue – her favourite place for a swim. Read more on page 54.