10 ways to live a live a little...
Looking for simple ways to boost body and soul? The team at AA Life is keen for New Zealanders to live life to the fullest! Here are a few ideas to add to your wellbeing wish list
1 Host the ultimate dinner party Who says you need a special occasion for a party? Whether there’s an indulgent layered cake you’ve been wanting to bake for ages, a barbecue that’s been unused for too long or a vintage bo le of wine begging to be opened, it’s time to get a group together and make a night of it. Go all out with fancy table se ings, take plenty of photos, and make it a night to remember!
2 Unleash your inner child For most of us, the stress of ‘adulting’ is a drain on inspiration, but studies show acting like a kid again is a great way to boost creativity and happiness levels. Experts say it only takes a few minutes of daydreaming, imagining, or doing arts and cra each day to get our creativity back, which in turn makes us more curious and open to different ways of thinking.
3 Declu er and create space If your closet is full of unused items that take up valuable real estate and never see the light of day, it may be time for a clear out. There’s a range of great local charities that welcome good quality pre-loved clothing, such as The Aunties, Dress for Success, or a Red Cross store. Not only will you get some warm fuzzies from knowing you’re donating to a good cause, but you have the satisfaction of ge ing a wayward wardrobe under control, and just think of what you could do with the extra space…
4 Foster a four-legged friend Like the idea of helping out an animal in need, but not sure you can commit to providing a forever home for a furry friend? Then fostering could be for you. Animal charities are oen on the lookout for extra help to house four-legged (or even feathered) cri ers, and whether it’s caring for a tiny puppy or showing some love to a mature cat in need of TLC, organisations can match you with a foster pet to suit your experience, preferences, and the amount of time you have to give. Jump online to see which animal charities are near you.
5 Stroll for the soul We’re hard wired to love the great outdoors and many studies have found being in nature can help with everything from sharpening focus to boosting creativity. Whether it’s hi ing the tracks in your hometown or ticking off one of the country’s Great Walks, strolling can benefit both body and mind. But it’s not just about the big Instagram-worthy views – live in the moment by kicking off your shoes and feeling the grass under your feet or take in the shapes and pa erns of the nearby leaves.
6 Have a go at meditation It used to be called ‘new age’, but these days, meditation is well known to banish stress and boost happiness. Celebrities like Oprah Winfrey, Angelina Jolie and Hugh Jackman swear by its calming benefits, and you don’t need any fancy equipment to give it a go. Downloading an app is the best way to get started and meditation pros say it only takes a few minutes a day to see the mind-soothing effects.
7 Lend a listening ear Sadly, loneliness is at epidemic proportions, and it’s our elderly that are most commonly affected. There are many charities looking for people to make a short weekly visit to a local rest home or hospice, and other organisations coordinate volunteers to make a weekly phone call to an older person in need of a listening ear. Whether it’s looking at old photos, reading out loud or chaing about what’s in the day’s newspaper, even the smallest of gestures can really brighten someone’s day.
8 Make yourself a priority We all know the importance of politely saying ‘no’ sometimes when the diary is looking hectic, but puing it in to practice is oen a different story. While it can be hard to turn down an invitation if you’re worried about disappointing someone, running yourself ragged tends to do more harm than good. Whether it’s siing quietly reading a book, doing cra or sweating it out at an exercise class, regularly making time to refresh and recharge is never selfish or indulgent – it’s a necessity.
9 Learn some stretches Don’t let those memories of school PE class put you off, group fitness doesn’t have to mean competitive sports or high-intensity sweat sessions. A great way to boost body and mind is with some gentle stretching; and a yin yoga or mat Pilates session can help coax those tight muscles back into shape. Class sizes are oen small, and each move has a range of variations to suit different skill levels. Best of all, you’re sure to walk out of class feeling calm, refreshed and happy. 10 Get a li le extra peace of mind with Life Cover from AA Life It’s important to have time to enjoy the lile things, that’s why they’ve made signing up to AA Life so quick and straightforward. Here, you won’t find any complex jargon or lengthy medical checks. Plus there’s the peace of mind from knowing you’re backed by one of New Zealand’s most trusted brands (as voted by ‘Reader’s
Digest Most Trusted Brand’ survey from 2013 to 2017).
At AA Life, it’s about geing rid of the worry, so you can focus on what maers the most.