Sunday, 24 January 2016

Savouring Positive Experiences

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As you may know I am a planner. I like to be organised and plan ahead. Having a few days off and some short weeks around Christmas felt amazing and I made the most of it doing things I enjoy, relaxing, spending time with friends and family and doing some voluntary work. I also made a huge effort to leave work at work and really appreciate my time and life away from it. Partly, this was because I needed the break and some time for myself and partly because I knew that January and February were going to be extremely busy. As soon as I found out that I had Christmas Eve off I contemplated treating myself to a little bit of time in a local spa. When I discussed this with a friend she suggested that we go together in the New Year, which we did on Friday evening.

Browsing 'happiness' on Pinterest I came across an article which mentioned Savouring. When I Googled this term further I discovered that there has been research and a new model proposed to increase happiness which looks at savouring positive experiences. An article from the Huffington Post talks about Savouring in three categories; anticipate, present and reminisce/reflect.

The idea of Savouring happiness is about making positive moments and experiences last longer, enhancing those experiences and the state of happiness. One of the reasons I like making plans with friends and family and making plans to do things I enjoy is so that I have things to look forward to, to anticipate.

Being present and mindful are terms that are commonly used and have links with happiness. Being mindful allows you to fully appreciate the experience instead of rushing through it. I was worried that time would restrict my ability to be present as I rushed home from work, fed my cats and grabbed items such as my bikini, shampoo and moisturiser and then rushed off again to meet my friend at Ufford Park Spa. Once I had made my way through rush hour traffic and arrived I began to relax. I felt my excitement as I left the reception desk and headed to the changing rooms and as I swiped the card to unlock the door to the spa area. I felt the temperature change as I stepped inside, the heat. The feel and sound of the water as I stepped into the hydrotherapy pool. I looked up at the glass windows above and could see my reflection in the many panes, the stillness and the colours projected through the water. We were the only two people in the spa at the time so it was quiet, calm. I joined my friend at the seated area and turned on the jets, feeling the air massage our backs. Beautiful. Just what I needed at the end of the week and start my weekend.

I met up with some other friends yesterday and shared what we have been up to recently so I spoke about my visit to the spa, I had also mentioned my plans at work on Friday so I will probably discuss it with colleagues during the week. I am also writing about my experience here so have opportunities to reminisce and reflect.

Writing this post has made me realise that I often savour moments such as these, however, the important moments I don't savour as much are the smaller everyday ones. I have noticed recently, since attempting to do Yoga With Adriene's Yoga Camp I do find that I am present during my time on the mat and I do reflect and talk to others about the positive effects I have noticed since starting the programme. These positive effects are what motivate me to make the effort to find time to practice, although, I am not able to do this daily at the moment I am doing my best.

I would like to hear your experiences of Savouring

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