It's You Time: Tips to Relax and Reset

We love summer, but too often we find ourselves biting off more than we can chew. Take some time to re-focus on yourself this week: meditate, go for a walk in the gorgeous sunshine, or just spend some time doing something important to you. We've put together our favorite tips and ideas below to make it easy.

Just remind yourself: you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of anything else!

Journal your inspirations, aspirations, and dreams.

Writing down your thoughts or feelings at the time can be extremely cathartic. It's important to write down aspirations and goals as well so you can develop a clear vision of what you want to do. 

Wear daily reminders of the things you're working on.

Give yourself physical reminders of your intentions. Perhaps you're pledging to yourself to work on not stressing about the little things, or remaining calm in trying situations. Wearing a physical object on your wrist or finger can not only help remind you throughout the day to practice your new habit, they're darn pretty as well :). 

Make your yoga practice easy and stress-free: create a calming environment when you practice.

When you're doing yoga or meditating, it's important to feel safe and comfortable in your space. Create a calming environment with burning sage, candles, green plants, and stones. It will only enhance the experience!

Place positive reminders around your home or workspace.

Remind yourself of what an awesome job you're doing! Life can be tough - nobody said it was easy - and we need all the encouragement we can get. Find a favorite quote or illustration to hang in your home or workspace to remind yourself of what is important.

Crystals

Certain crystals and stones carry special meanings and are used for specific purposes. Wear them as one-of-a-kind helpers or reminders on your journey.

Our Favorite Crystals & Their Uses

Quartz: Balance, Clarity, Power
Rose Quartz: Unconditional love, Heart-Opening, Self-Love
Druzy: Light, Joy, Harmony
Turquoise: Healing, Stress-Relief, Abundance
Moonstone: Intuition, Calmness, Protection
Amethyst: Peace, Intuition, Sobriety
Amazonite: Communication, Creativity, Trust
Citrine: Success, Abundance, Mental Clarity
Agate: Strength, Courage, Protection

 

Schedule You Time

Spend some time and focus inward. Some of our favorite activities include taking an art class, coloring, picking up a new hobby, taking a bath, reading, and more. Keep your appointment with yourself like you would another person. 

We find mandala painting, drawing, or coloring books to be particularly helpful. A mandala is a spiritual and ritual symbol used in Buddhism and Hinduism. It represents the cosmos, a microcosm of the universe. In spiritual philosophy, mandalas are used as an aid in meditation.

Good vibes only!

-Amanda

5 Creative Ways to Entertain Your Clients

Check out our list of unique ideas for entertaining your clients. At One Strange Bird, we host lots of parties and I am always looking for unique ways to say “thank you” to continue our relationship.  We host events for other businesses to woo their clients too!  Going the extra mile in the service industry gives you a leg up on your competition.  We love and value our customers and believe that giving back is important.  Check out our 5 easy tips below for some fun ideas for a variety of budgets. 

 

Send a handwritten thank you card

After you have worked with a client, send a sweet hand-written thank you note.  In the age of email, I can’t think of anything nicer then getting something handwritten in the mail.  We have a ton of quirky and sweet thank you cards at the store and I love to send them to clients after they have booked a big corporate event with us.  I think it makes our relationship stronger.  We are really truly grateful for each business relationship and transaction we have and this is a great way to express that gratitude.  (Shop our cards here)

Host an annual appreciation event

Want to really turn heads? Create an annual event that says thank you by entertaining a group of your best clients.  We have a customer appreciation party that treats our best customers to a free art class, passed appetizers, and yummy cocktails.  What is better than a free night out?  Bonus points if you can also use the event to showcase a new product or service.  If your customers love the event, they will start to look forward to it each year and (fingers crossed) tell their friends about you! (Learn about our events here)

Send an unexpected gift

Everyone loves to get an unexpected gift!  As a boutique owner, I have gotten so many nice gifts from our wholesale clients.  They have sent me gift cards, greeting card samples, and chocolates.  We also have people who shop at One Strange Bird to find unique items to thank their clients.  They always put adorable thank you baskets together.  The most creative one I have seen was a Chicago-themed gift basket.  It was a really unique way to say thank you!  Other ideas would be: send flowers, send over lunch for the whole office, send a gift certificate for a spa day, or send some nice, monogrammed stationary. The ideas are endless.  The more creative you get, the more noticed you will be.  

Do something fun

So many corporate events can become stuffy and boring!  Stand out from the competition by doing something unexpected. At One Strange Bird, we help people entertain their clients by offering a casual art party.  Their guests sip wine, eat yummy appetizers, and create an easy craft.  One of our favorite clients, National Office Furniture, treats their clients to a fun Valentine party hosted by us, where their interior design clients get to make a fun handmade Valentine. Other ideas are: take clients to a baseball game, go play whirly ball, go to a bar-cade and blow off some stress with video games, take a cooking class and then eat your work, or book a cupcake decorating class. 

Pamper them

Everyone loves to be pampered! When you are working in a high stress corporate environment, what could be more enticing than a day of relaxation and stress relief?  Book a massage therapist to do mini chair massages, have a nail expert on hand for mini mani-pedis, order up some cupcakes and champagne, and sit back and relax. 

Winter Health Tips

Baby, it's cold outside! Motivation seem to slow and sticking to those resolutions gets harder as the degrees drop. Keep yourself focused, calm, and centered with these easy-to-implement health tips. 

EAT TO LIVE

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I don't like the word "diet." Dieting is a mental state that just makes you think of all the things you're missing. Instead of going on a diet and focusing on all the things you're getting rid of, try incorporating more lively and colorful foods into your daily routine. Think of all the possibilities for a homemade stir fry, colorful smoothie, or roasted veggie dish The more vitamins and minerals you eat from whole, unprocessed food, the less you'll crave and be hungry for the junk.

GET MOVING

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I personally have always loved exercise, but I know I'm in the minority here. It's hard for me to stay motivated when it's this cold outside, but I think of exercise as something I do to make myself feel awesome afterward. Bored of the same ol' activity? Switch up your routine! Try yoga instead of running one day, take a dance class (or have a solo dance party in your living room), or even just go on a brisk 30 minute walk with a friend. The more your blood gets pumping the better (and warmer!) you'll feel.

LESS SUGAR/ALCOHOL/CAFFEINE

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Like it or not, sugar, caffeine, and alcohol are all drugs. Reducing your intake of any of these will do wonders for you health. Of course, everything in moderation here - if you starve yourself of sugar and then binge later, that will be counterproductive. Limit your self to treats on the weekends, or maybe one day per week. I had to start telling myself to think of treats as "treats" - only having them on special days and not everyday. Try snacking on raisins or fruit instead of candy, substitute that 3rd cup of coffee for green or herbal tea, and limit those happy hours when you can. 

DRINK. MORE. WATER.


You hear it time and time again - practically every health tip blog will include this, and there's a multitude of great reasons. I always start my day off with at least 8 oz of water, if not 16 oz (yes, even before coffee or tea!). Think about it: you just spent 7+ hours going without water while you were sleeping - your body is already dehydrated. One of the worst things you could do would be to immediately introduce substances that could dehydrate you even further (*ahem*, caffeine, we're looking at you). Try drinking a glass of water before your morning coffee and notice the difference of how it makes you feel. I carry a 32 oz. water bottle with me practically at all times which helps me measure how much I'm drinking per day. Water helps lubricate joints and muscles, improves brain function, increases energy levels (!!), and can aid in weight loss, among a whole host of other benefits. If you find the taste of water boring, try infusing some herbs like mint or a squeeze of lemon or orange for some added flavor. 

PERSONAL TIME

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I notice myself getting super stressed when I don't reserve time for myself. My mother used to tell me to be mindful about guarding your personal time, and moms are almost always right! For the lucky ones, maybe you have 1 full day to yourself a week. If you're schedule is too crazy, or if you have kids, reserving even just 15 minutes a day to meditate, journal, or do other activities important to you will do wonders in keeping you sane. Try taking up a new hobby, drawing, learn to knit, joining a book club, reading on your own, scrapbooking, painting your nails, or taking a bath! Not sure where to start? Join us for a class and learn a new skill in a couple of hours! Link to see our class schedule here

When you start to feel pulled in too many directions, slow down and take some time for yourself. Trust me, not only will you feel better, the people around you will appreciate it as well!

In good health!
Amanda

Disclaimer: As the author, I have based my writings upon my own experiences, beliefs, and extensive research regarding the topics covered in this blog. However, I am not a medical doctor, nurse, or medical professional formally qualified in this subject matter. The information contained in this blog is not intended to be construed in any manner as medical advice. All diet and exercise decisions should be made with the approval of your health care provider. Please read and use the information that you derive from this blog appropriately and at your own risk.