Photo Credits : Barn Images, Dollar Gill, Annie Spratt
Healthy Tips for Adventures at Home
by: Nina Ruud
In case you haven't heard, Cali Life Co. has recently launched a Virtual Travel Series celebrating the wonders of traveling in California. Every article provides a distinct disclaimer about waiting to take that next dream trip and saving the articles for when it's safe to travel. In the light of the 400,000 American lives lost to COVID-19 and millions around the world, we want to highlight and encourage life at home during these very sad times.
Our company was founded by artists and adventurers both in spirit and in practice. As Co-Founder, I've personally travelled to 45 states and 20+ countries in the last 20 years. As an artist, I've painted on stages across the country and painted with kids around the world. It's my nature to move, to connect and to build relationships with my local and global community.
To stay home an entire day, let alone an entire year is a challenge. Having worked mostly from home for the past 5 years though I certainly had a head start going into this, already knowing some of the difficulties and benefits that arise from such a situation.
Every day I am inspired by frontline workers, caregivers, teachers, parents, grocery store workers, delivery drivers... Everyone on the planet who dedicates time to helping others. I acknowledge it is a privilege to be able to work from home, so we do everything possible to stay safe and stay sane while we wait for COVID-19 to end.
Until that day arrives, let's take a quick look at some healthy tips for life and adventures at home:
1. Reduce Device Notifications
Do you ever notice how much your phone beeps and buzzes? And if you have a laptop, iPad or desktop you might even be getting double or triple the notifications each day. Certain notifications are essential like when someone is calling or work messages come through. But what about "Breaking News" notifications telling you someone famous said something about someone else?
Exactly how many notifications do you really need? Take a quick dive into your device settings, search for Notifications, and analyze which notifications are essential.
You can still stay in touch with the news and friends, checking when you have free time and catching up on the latest stories. But is it really necessary to have a buzz on your phone every time a celebrity says something?
Photo Credit: Jamie Street
2. Limit Your Social Media
Most people won't like this tip but I personally can attest to the benefits of limiting and signing off on personal social media accounts. Good and bad news will always reach you if it needs to. Staying up to date with what your college roommate ate for dinner last night does not exactly benefit your well-being.
Once I reduced my social media usage, I found so much more time to actually connect with those I care about. We text, we call, we FaceTime... I still send memes and GIFs and life updates to those I want to stay in touch with. I found that I actually grew CLOSER with my family and friends after checking out of Facebook, and the messages we share together have so much more meaning.
Photo Credit: Dollar Gill
3. Take Time to Connect
Bouncing off of #2, it's truly important to make time to connect with those you love. Creating a space and time to reach out and have conversations is not only healthy for your relationships, it's beneficial for your mental and emotional health.
Not everyone has the same time zone or schedule to do frequent phone calls, so its good to get creative with this! For example, I have a friend in Germany and the way we navigate the time difference is by using the Voice Message option on WhatsApp. A few mornings a week I wake up and leave a 5-10 minute voice message reflecting on things we've been discussing, current events, and funny thoughts to share. She plays it when she's cooking dinner and will respond when she has free time.
Photo Credit: Annie Spratt
4. Plan a Trip (but don't make reservations)
Almost every day I look into my next international adventure. The only difference is that now, I'm not making reservations. I have a spreadsheet with costs and methods of travel from Point A to Point B, I have saved trips on my Airbnb app for places I find... I talk with close friends about them joining for parts of my next expedition. But we make no plans on exactly when these things will happen.
The truth is, none of us know when travel will be completely safe again. Even with vaccines there are still risks and unknown possibilities. We may never travel the same way we did prior to COVID 19. However, spending some time each day dreaming of your ideal trip can take some of the heaviness out of staying home.
I even started a separate savings account. Every time I yearn for Happy Hour, I put a little money in the trip fund. If I want to order something online, I look for items that travel well so it doubles as a future investment. I keep telling myself that the longer I have to wait to travel, the nicer the hotels will be when I get there. Saving money for that next expedition means you are giving your self the gift of anticipation and future experience!
Photo Credit: Giulia Bertelli
5. Get Crafty
I'm no stranger to spending hours of downtime playing silly games on my phone, or scrolling through Apple News. When there is nothing to do and nowhere to go, it's very easy to just pick up your device and let the time pass by you. But what if today, instead of vegging on the couch and falling into your normal routine, you picked up a hobby. A craft, perhaps something to make or fix.
You don't have to paint a masterpiece on canvas to be crafty. Find an ugly picture frame and paint it white or gold. Dig into that closet of yours and look for something to fix. Using your hands, even for a insignificant task, can take your mind off things and build that mind/body connection. Youtube craft ideas, order necessary supplies online or be creative and use items you already have!
Photo Credit: Bruce Mars
6. Make a Playlist
Create a Road-trip style playlist for morning coffee. Think back to the great songs of your past, songs you listened to with friends or while out traveling. Keep your music fresh and commercial free if you can. With so many music apps out there, it's definitely worth paying a little extra to avoid the ads!
Need some recommendations? Text your friends and ask them to send their favorites... or see below for a few of mine. It's good to get a mix of old and new music, and put in on shuffle to keep things interesting. Avoid "Audio Fatigue" by getting a decent speaker if possible, your ears will thank you!
A Peak into my Playlist:
Fortune Teller | Robert Plant and Alison Krauss
Ode to Billie Joe | Bobbie Gentry
Collarbone | Fujiya & Miyagi
The Best | Tina Turner
Bamboleo | Gypsy Kings
This Life | Vampire Weekend
Sedona | Houndmouth
Stunnin' | Curtis Waters feat. Harm Franklin
Glass, Concrete & Stone | David Byrne
Maybe You Can Owe Me | Architecture in Helsinki
River | Leon Bridges
Switch up your playlist semi-often and remove any songs that have negative associations. Keep it light, fun and fluid and your time will be much more enjoyable at home!
Side Note: With good music comes some excellent dancing opportunities. Shut your blinds, turn up the volume and let your body MOVE any way it pleases. Got roommates? Dancing is contagious, they might just join you if they are cool like that.
Photo Credit: Barn Images
7. Home Organization
With an abundance of home shopping options, it's very easy to want to buy all the latest trendy decorations. Apologies to the shopping addicts, but less is more! Take a look around you, how many things do you really want to see everyday?
If you are the type that has stuff everywhere (no judgement here!), try taking some time to go through what you have. De-cluttering each room in your house is an adventure in it's own right! Keep only what you love, and what you need for work and personal health. Do you still have spices from 5 years ago? Toss them! Do you have clothing you no longer wear? Donate it! What about that concert ticket from a memorable first date? Keep it! It's not just about getting rid of things. It's about making room for the things you treasure.
Another truth... you don't need much to survive. And the things you really need usually aren't things at all. Think for a moment that you are like a house plant. You need sunshine, nourishment, water, connection and a little attention here and there. Make space for yourself to flourish.
With a little organization, you can keep the old letters, the souvenirs, the knick knacks... import items that truly mean something, readily available for reminiscence anytime you wish.
Photo Credit: Tyler Nix
8. Localized Adventures
Almost everyone lives in a community with outdoor space. It may not look like Yosemite or NYC, but take time each week to explore your neighborhood a bit. Getting outside often, even for a 20 minute stroll around the block, will greatly improve your perspective and get you that Vitamin D that is necessary for overall health.
Make it an adventure. Take pictures of bugs and flowers. Being an adventurer doesn't always mean traveling to far away lands. It means having an intrigued mindset, viewing everydayness as an opportunity to explore what's around you. Every time I step outside I try to notice something different. Something new that was always there in front of me.
Please, always follow local protocols and use common sense. If you are alone, invite a travel buddy to join you if you don't feel safe by yourself.
And don't forget your mask and sunglasses.
If you are reading this, we love you.
It's not typical for a brand to be writing about reducing social media and turning off commercials. But we aren't a typical brand and these aren't typical times. If you are reading this, it means you've come this far with us and for that, we truly thank you from the bottom of our hearts! COVID-19 totally sucks, but what doesn't suck is the people in this world working hard make the world a better place. If you are an essential worker, whether it be a doctor, nurse, grocery store clerk, parent, teacher, delivery driver, or anyone who helps others, we salute you, we appreciate you, and we love you.
One Last Thing...
The best thing we can all do right now is stay home whenever possible. Unfortunately that may not be a positive thing for everyone reading this. If you are struggling with your home situation and need assistance with staying safe, please check out the resources posted below, and feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you just want someone to say hi to!
CalHOPE | Crisis Counseling and Support
"Talk with people like yourself and get emotional support. Stressed about unemployment, housing or feeding your family? Help is available."
Domestic Violence Support | 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
"Everyone deserves relationships free from domestic violence. When you are ready, we're here to listen with confidential support 24/7/365."
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline | 1800-273-TALK (8255)
"Crisis workers are available 24 hours a day. Calls are free and confidential
"The National Helpline provides 24-hour free and confidential referrals about mental and/or substance use disorders, prevention, treatment and recovery in English and Spanish.
Thanks for joining us everyone! Sending all our best wishes to you and yours in 2021~
About the Author
Nina Ruud | San Diego, CA
"Nina Ruud is an artist and adventurer, and co-founder of Cali Life Co. She loves spending time with her family, hiking and planning for her next big adventure (for when it's safe to travel again of course!)"