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Ever feel like you need a vacation?

The to-do list that never ends,

Burning the candle at both ends,

What do you do when there is more work than fun?

Here are twelve ways to smile and enjoy the day.

1. Burn incense.

Incense is far more than just an “air freshener”.  The benefits of burning incense include enhancing concentration and focus, stimulating creativity, increasing motivation, boosting confidence and reducing anxiety and tension.

2. Have a cup of hot tea.

Tea is sacred in many cultures around the world.  Sitting down to enjoy a great cup of tea has a way of slowing down the mind.  Rose tea is perfect for soothing the heart and emotions.  Chamomile is relaxing.  Fennel aids in digestion.  Select the tea that’s right for the situation and enjoy it to the last drop.

3. Go for a walk.

Stepping outside for a little fresh air and sunshine is an easy way to hit the reset button on your day.  Look up and notice the clouds floating through the sky.  Let the warmth of the sun sink into your skin.  Take a few deep breaths and let nature do its magic.

4. Take a power nap.

Naps aren’t just for kids.  Taking a twenty minute nap can do wonders for an overworked mind and body.  You’ll wake up with a new surge of energy and fresh ideas that will take you through the rest of your day.

5. Dance.

No special skills are required to turn on your favorite tune and cut loose.  Release your inhibitions and let the music move you.

6. Call a friend/family member/lover.

Pick up the phone with just one thing in mind – let them know just how much you appreciate them.  You’ll both leave the conversation with that loving feeling.

7. Bring nature in.

Get a house plant or a beautiful bouquet of flowers for your home or office.  They are natural mood enhancers and everyone who sees them will benefit.

8. Journal.

Taking a few minutes to write down your thoughts is a wonderful way to clear mental clutter.  Give yourself the chance to express yourself on paper and you’ll find increased awareness, stability and joy.

9. Play with your pet.

Animals are exceptionally good at living in the moment and they remind us to do the same.  Grab your pet’s favorite toy and have some fun.

10. Have a piece of good chocolate.

It’s no myth, chocolate is a feel good food.  It has been favored by people ranging from the ancient Aztecs to high society Victorians to Popes. Sit back and enjoy the flavors and let the endorphins go to work on you.

11. Be Silent.

Turn everything off and hide way in the silence for a few minutes.  Go in the bathroom or sit in your parked car, it does not matter, just let the peace and quiet recharge your spirit.

12. Use essential oils.

Rub a few drops of peppermint oil in your palms and on your temples for a boost of energy in the afternoon.  Apply lavender oil to the stomach and neck to relieve the nervous system.  The aroma of orange oil is ideal for relieving anxiety and making you feel happy.

Final thoughts…

Vacations are wonderful, but probably will only happen once or twice a year for most of us.  The key is to incorporate a couple simple pleasures in your day and watch how the little things make a big difference.

These twenty four hours are a sacred gift,

Unique and yours to enjoy,

Celebrate them!

Monique Alvarez serves up inspiration, love and hope to those who are HUNGRY FOR MORE in life and won’t stop until they are living their wildest dreams and personal legend. Author of Celebrate Life 365 Ways, The Hungry Soul’s Manifesto and creator of the AMonika clothing line.  She is a lover of travel, cultures, food, playing outside and the overall savoring of life. Visit Monique at





Touching the Ultimate Dimension, we feel happy and comfortable, like the birds enjoying the blue sky, or the deer enjoying the green fields.

We know that we do not have to look for the Ultimate outside of ourselves­­–it is available within us, in this very moment.

–Thich Nhat Hanh–


For More Ways to Be Happy Check Out the Following Books:

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