Reward yourself

So many times we feel we “deserve” a margarita or large buttered popcorn on a friday night because we’ve worked so hard all week. Or a cold beer and pizza after all day saturday yardwork. And part of that is right- we DO deserve a reward and it’s good to treat ourselves when we feel we’ve earned something out of the ordinary. But it does not have to be centered around food or alcohol like it so often is.  Here are some ideas of how to “treat” yourself and contribute to your health rather than sabotage it.
-Buy yourself a big bouquet of fresh flowers and enjoy the sight and scent for many days
-Schedule a massage- You will look forward to it all week. Check for local massage schools or see if any place offers shorter chair massages. You will still feel the benefits and not break your wallet. If you are feeling really decadent schedule a massage therapist to come to your home
-Get a manicure or pedicure- a convenient, accessible way to feel really pampered and every time you look at your nails you will be reminded of the nice way you treated yourself
-Buy a fresh stack of great magazines to flip through and devour- Whole Living, Yoga Journal, Health, Oxygen, or whatever you like. The photos are inspiring and the articles will keep you informed.
-Try some new exotic tea flavors- iced or hot. Serve in fine china or crystal and celebrate with a “tea party”
(Image courtesy of
-Buy a new houseplant for your desk and be reminded daily of how you treated yourself well
-Buy some seasonal  local produce you’ve never tried and experiment with a recipe
-Take a nap
-Go for a long leisurely hike  with a friend instead of meeting for cocktails
-Get a new haircut or highlights. Take advantage of an extra long shampoo or conditioning treatment
-Check out some new workout clothing, shoes, yoga mats. About the same $$ amount as an expensive restaurant dinner and will last you a lot longer.
-Browse a bookstore. Be an intuitive book shopper and buy whatever calls to you from the shelf or feels good in your hands.
Sidenote: I am a big book fan. Real books. The kind you can hold and smell and fall asleep on. Books that gracefully turn yellow with age and have broken in spines from years of being read and enjoyed. New books that smell like the first day of school. Stacks of books that are just waiting to be held and discovered. Books with  dog-eared pages from other readers who experienced the story before me. Bookstores to me are heaven. I just can’t get all of that wonderfulness with a kindle. 
-Take a long bubble-bath using natural scrubs, salts, soaps and essential oils
-Try reflexology, nothing is more relaxing than having your feet rubbed, not even 2 glasses of Merlot
-Attend a weekend or evening yoga workshop at a local studio. Check out new instructors and styles
-Sign up for a healthy cooking class.
-Have a movie festival. Pick a theme; comedy, documentary, classic and get lost for an afternoon or evening
-Rent a canoe, paddleboat or kayak and get out near a lake, river or pond.  Check out local parks,  sometimes a moonlight paddle or other special events are offered. Water is naturally relaxing and soothing
In what ways do you treat yourself well? How do you Indulge in a healthy way?

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