After 10 episodes of road-testing techniques for a happier and healthier life on The Well podcast, Rebecca Sparrow and Robin Bailey have learned a few tricks.
They’ve done their homework every week and discovered that, low and behold, the life hacks they’ve been trying actually work! Bec and Robin are happier, healthier and they have even have more free time on their hands. Honest.
Take a caffeine nap
Coffee AND a nap? This is all our favourite things in one! And it’s so nice not to have to choose between them. If you’re wasting your afternoons being grumpy and unproductive, a caffeine nap will help you survive the day and get things done.
When you start feeling weary, drink a cup of coffee then take a 20 minute power nap. The caffeine kicks in around the time you wake up, so you’ll leap off the couch energised instead of groggy.
Say goodbye to bad friends
Apparently we recycle our friends every seven years, making room for new and better ones. It’s time for you to take a look at your friendship circle and dump the toxic ones.
Toxic friends are the ones who won’t clap when you win. If they don’t lift you up, if you’re feeling drained after spending time with them or if you simply can’t trust them, it’s time to break up. There’s no right or wrong way to let them go, but do it kindly. Put on your big girl pants and just tell them, or simply wave goodbye.
Follow the 1-minute rule
This godsend is from the beautiful mind of Gretchen Rubin, our happiness guru. She taught us that anything that can be done in less than a minute should be done immediately, and it’s saved us SO. MUCH. TIME.
Call your mum. Take out the rubbish. Make your bed. That heavy feeling that comes with an overflowing to-do list goes away and your house is cleaner to boot. Now with all the time you’ve saved – go do something fun! You’ve earned it.
Practice good ‘sleep hygiene’
Yep, this is another sleep one, because sleep is the most wonderful thing in this world… If you can get it.
After discovering Robin was only getting about four hours sleep every night, Bec decided it was time to stage a sleep intervention.
So how do you clean up your sleeping habits?
Stop wasting time fluffing around every morning and prepare the night before. Lay out your outfit so you can enjoy an extra few precious minutes to snooze in the morning. Bliss.
Then it’s time for a bedtime routine shake-up. Nix the coffee and tea (unless you’re taking a caffeine nap) and the alcohol – it helps you get to sleep, but not stay asleep. Set aside 15 minutes of stress time. It may sound counter-intuitive but if you do your worrying for a set period of time, you’ll get it out of the way and it won’t keep you up. Stash your gadgets out of sight and go to bed at the same time every night, no excuses.
Learn to say no
Ahhh, the joy of ‘no’. There is magic in saying no to the things you don’t want to do. And once you’ve discovered it, the guilt fades and you can finally cure your disease to please the people around you.
Perhaps your sister’s calling you up to babysit, but you have a cake to bake for school and you said you’d help a co-worker prepare for a presentation tomorrow. Breath, and say no. Practice in the mirror and have you pre-planned sentences ready, “I just don’t have the capacity right now” works WONDERS. Say it with confidence and your calendar will no longer be filled with pesky obligations.
The latest episode of The Well is all about raising grateful kids. Listen below and subscribe in iTunes.