New blog by The Topiary Hair & Beauty Salon - Old Basingstoke, Basingstoke.- Who stole our summer?I have returned from my 1st overseas summer holiday in 3 years, tanned, fresh faced and feeling positively rejuvenated to what I can only describe as AUTUMN! In August. What happened to the supposed “never-ending warmth” that existed when I left Bournemouth Airport 3 weeks ago? Its my 1st proper shift at the salon today, armed with a bag of foreign candy and the lingering whiff of aftersun in my trail., I’m feeling less than cheery. It’s not just the post holiday blues that I’m talking about, we all have day like em. For me it started on Friday! Going to the fridge early doors to make a brew only to find we’ve run out of milk, resorting to toast (not quite the flakey croissant and fresh juice I have become accustomed to in Spain), I find the bread had started growing friends. Then later, my toddler stole the tasseled key to my new shoe cabinet, 10 mins before I was due for at a meeting (I had to wear flats. FLATS!!) and my eldest had decided that the dog would look so much better with green and purple felt tip highlights in his previously white scuff. I need to sort my shiz out,

So, according to researchers around the world, there are a few easy ways to shake off the grumps.

1) SUN. Haaaaaaaa. When we are exposed to sunlight our bodies release serotonin also known as the happy hormone, known for its mood lifting abilities. But researchers have found that there no need to bake in the summer sun in St Lucia (damn) to reap these rewards, sitting in even in direct sunlight like through a window pane has a significant effect on serotonin levels. When you see some let me know?

2) EAT BREAKFAST. It’s common knowledge that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, giving your body and mind the kick start for the day. Apparently a bowl of cereal, a round of toast or porridge can really assist those usually moody teenagers, with boys particularly. Making them feel more positive and in girls, increasing mental awareness. Eating every four hours will also help keep your blood sugar levels stable. Whole grains, fruit, vegetables, and lean meats. These food’s rate lower on the glycemic index, stabilising that blood sugar level. If your having a really bad day, personally I found a Jaffa cake can solve most ailments.

3) POSITIVITY LIST. Now I like a good list, I live my life by the lists in my “To-Do” app, and TBH I think I might forget to eat if there wasn’t a regular “ping ping” in my pocket to remind me. But I quite like the idea of a positivity list. There was some viral exercise on Facebook the other week, where the nominated person had to list 3 positive things for three days consecutively, proving that social media CAN be a positive addition to your life. 😉 So, grab a pen, some paper and start to write a gratitude list. All the things that you are grateful in your life – e.g. Your kids, family, health may be an activity or trip that you are looking forward to. Then write a negative list. Include all the gripes that have made you feel grumpy – e.g. stuck in traffic, rubbish weather, forgetting to put the green bin out. Then afterwards read both lists carefully. Often the comparison of the positive to the negative list makes the grumps seem much more insignificant than before. Proving to yourself that your life is bursting with love and positivity.

4) RELAX, BREATH AND SMILE. Take 5, mid-morning if work stress is seriously freaking with your sanity. Find a quiet spot, or failing that swivel your chair to face the wall or window. Rest your hand on your chest over your heart, focus on your breathing. In for 5 seconds and out for 5. Give yourself a smile too. Smiling slows your heart rate, which in turn reduces the blood pumping round your body and lowers the feeling of stress. Doing this 5 minute exercise should help you feel reconnected to your body and less like a crazy lady.

5) HAVE A DANCE. Lol. Love this one! Everyone knows that exercise creates a rush of endorphins, the feel good neurotransmitters! If you’re a busy mum, businesswoman, or both then hoovering, emptying the dishwasher, doing the kids homework, writing that presentation or possibly having a shower take priority over hitting the gym or pounding the pavements. But, take just 5 minutes, stick on MTV and dance like no ones watching! Even better you can do it with the kids, they’ll think you’re hilarious, in a really great way. Try it, you might be surprised how much better you feel.

So, armed with the foreign candy (and an apple) I head to work, but with my positivity list in my back pocket and a smile on my face.

Laura x

P.s Dance, it’s cheaper than therapy