What with today being National Mental Health Day, we've put together a few lovely little ways to treat your mind and body to some TLC in Dublin.
It's easy to rush through daily life without stopping to notice much. Paying attention to the present moment – to our own thoughts, feelings and to the world around us can improve our mental wellbeing.
Mental wellbeing means feeling good about life and yourself and taking time to focus on yourself and your emotional processes, and what better way to reconnect with yourself than a nice treat?
Here are the most relaxing ones in town...
1. Do some Hatha Yoga - Little Bird Studios
Hatha yoga is essentially a series of postures designed to improve body alignment and to calm the nervous system. Classes tend to be gentle and slower-paced with a focus on simple breathing exercises and meditation.
Hatha yoga is particularly suitable for beginners.
2. Grab a Hot Chocolate - Laudurée
The store imports Valrhona chocolate, premium French chocolate, and mixes it with nothing more than cream, milk sugar, water and even more chocolate.
The perfect way to indulge for just a few euro.
3. Exercise in Phoenix Park
Simple but effective. This comes back to the whole mindfulness thing, when you're out in nature you feel more grounded in the present and less inclined to stress. Add the endorphin high you get from exercise and you're on the right track to relaxation.
4. Treat yourself to a massage - Thai Massage
You'll be hard pressed to find a better way to de-stress than having all your aching muscles pummeled and soothed by the experts at Thai Massage on Kevin Street.
Wrap up in a robe, breathe in the relaxing essential oils, and let all your cares float away.
5. Have a go in a floatation chamber - Harvest Moon
If you want a more unusual way to find complete peace, we suggest you spend some time in a floatation chamber. Also known as a sensory deprivation chamber, this pod blocks out all external sights and sounds to allow the user complete freedom from the constant pressure of analyzing the world around them.
This sensory deprivation causes levels of the stress hormone cortisol to drop, while the happiness neurotransmitter dopamine becomes elevated.
6. Take a boat cruise - Dublin Bay Cruises
See a different side to Dublin than you would on land with a chilled out boat cruise along Dublin Bay.
The fresh sea salt air whipping off your cheeks and the chance to just get away from all the hustle and bustle of the city makes this a must-do activity. You can go all the way from Dalkey to Howth.
7. Read a book by the fire - The Harbour Bar
Grab a big strong pot of tea from the bar, snuggle yourself down by the fire in this ultra cosy Bray (yes yes, we know it's juuuust outside of Dublin) bar, and get completely lost in your books.
The adorably old kitty cat is the perfect reading companion.
Header image: Shutterstock & justynamic/Instagram