If “ugh” is the response that comes to mind when you remember today is Valentine’s Day – this is the post for you! We want you to have a GREAT night tonight. A great night doesn’t have to be filled with over-the-top activities. A great night can consist of doing something positive and enjoyable for yourself. Let’s be purposeful about putting the LIFE in Work/Life balance. Let’s do something different from the norm. Here are some ideas:
(Note: Many of these suggestions are available only to employees living in the Cary area. Remote or regional employees, we hope this may at least provide you with ideas or inspiration for activities to pursue in your own area.)
Have you ever thought about trying hot yoga, cycling, barre or Pilates but were too intimidated to try? Why not tonight? Try a class you’ve never done before. Not only do these local studios offer drop-in/online scheduling – they also offer a SAS discount!
Or head over to the RFC to try Aqua Kickboxing or Cycle.
Can’t make it in time to one of the above classes? Get your work-out in at home! Pop Sugar Fitness has an easy to navigate site of quick but fun workouts. How about this 20 Minute Cardio Dance Workout or this At Home Boxing Workout.
Get moving outside!
Grab your bike and join the regular Tuesday Benelux Cycling Club Rides in Cameron Village.
See the outdoor art installations and walk the Ann and Jim Goodnight Museum Park at the North Carolina Museum of Art.
On your way home, stop to walk one of the many greenways and trails.
So you don’t have the energy to do a class or go out somewhere tonight? That’s fine! But if lounging on the couch with Netflix is your go to for relaxation - why not try something different? This post suggests “The 13 podcasts that will help make you a better human”. Categories include "best for wowing dinner parties" and “best for developing superpowers”. If Netflix really is your thing (and you’re missing new episodes) there is the category, “best for when you’re missing Sherlock”. Get comfy on the couch or find an activity you like to do and listen up!
Treat your taste buds. Crank up the tunes and cook up a storm in the kitchen. Try a healthy recipe from the HCC Nutrition Site.
Looking for ingredient inspiration? The new H Mart Asian Grocery in Morrisville boasts a food court and fresh produce.
Checkout these IndyWeek Best of the Triangle 2016 nominations – best bakery, best cupcake, best desserts – stop by a place you’ve never been before and treat yourself!
Feel the need to read? Sometimes looking for that new book can be half the fun.
Visit an independent bookshop: Quail Ridge Books
Visit your local library. Browse the “recommended reading” shelves.
Check out the NPR Book Concierge for suggestions. With categories like "Eye-Opening Reads", "It’s All Geek to Me", and "Tales From Around the World"; there is a book for everyone!
When was the last time you thought creatively for a purpose other than work or school? As kids we drew, made up games, and wrote poems. Tap back into that part of you. Pick one of these 365 Creative Writing Prompts to write tonight. It may feel silly or odd at first, but let the ideas flow and see what happens! Observe how you feel after doing it – you may find yourself more energized and more connected to your sense of self.
We may be a bit biased, but the Work/Life library has a book full of great writing prompts as well: Kicking in the Wall by Barbara Abercrombie.
If you’re a parent, try adding a fun spin to the average week night. Here are some ideas of games and local activities worth trying:
Tonight the Walnut Creek Wetland Center is offering a screening of a nature film and popcorn. Cost is $1 per person and you are encouraged to bring dinner with you.
Paint Your Pot offers an out of the norm craft-night for you and your children.
Get involved tonight!
Live in Durham and interested in supporting your community? The Durham Jaycees holds meetings the 2nd Tuesday of the month.
Do you live in Raleigh? Did you know that you are part of a Citizens Advisory Council? Look yours up and if you happen to be in the North Central, Northwest, or Mordecai district - they all have meetings tonight.
Do you like to knit? Join Knit Night tonight at the Cameron Village Library to create mittens and scarves that will be donated to local charities.
In the midst of the "busyness", take some time to slow down.
Explore the meditation garden on campus for some quality “me” time.
The Calm App provides a variety of meditation programs and relaxation techniques.
Explore a new app.
Learn a new language or sharpen your skills using DuoLingo
Explore art pieces and learn their history using the Daily Dose of Art App.
Studies have identified a positive psychological impact associated with cleaning and organizing. Try starting with just one room in your house tonight. Use three boxes or bags; one for things to keep, one to donate, and one to trash.
Try re-arranging the furniture in one room in your house. Not sure where to start? This HGTV article provides tips for each room in the home!
"Much like having a snack eases our hunger when we don’t have the opportunity to eat a full meal, “snacking” on reminders of our significant emotional connections eases our “social hunger”... Social snacking can take many forms, but scientists have found that photographs of loved ones are one of the most emotionally nutritious snacks we can consume…” From the book Emotional First Aid by Guy Winch.
Are there pictures sitting in your phone that you can print out tonight? Do you have pictures tucked away that can replace old photos already in frames? You can buy discount frames from places like Goodwill. Fill your home with reminders of the people/things/places you love.
Whether it comes from this list or is an idea of your own, pick one new thing to do tonight for you. Have a GREAT night tonight!
This post was written by Katie Seavey, LCSW in the Work/Life Department and Allison Harris, Social Work Intern from NC State.