Pretty things elevate an experience, and -
Pretty things hold strange elements of satisfaction, that -
Urge a certain form of joy in their users...୧༼✿ ͡◕ д ◕͡ ༽୨ ʸᵉᵃʰᵎ
Perhaps, it is the nature of humans as visual creatures...
That makes us easily susceptible to shopping - as a form of mood booster, and motivation to get things done.
Doesn't life feel so good with nice things?
Today, I wanted to share my best ten purchases in my attempt at a healthier lifestyle. I have been using most of them nearly everyday and they have not just genuinely inspired me to live more healthily...
But also injected the experience with glee and delight!
1. Salad Spinner and a Huge-Ass Mixing Bowl
What makes a salad spinning, dizzy, stupid good?
An answer unearthed through pain: one dressed well, with its leaves dry-clean(ed)...
Whether you're a converting or converted chronic salater, invest in a mixing bowl and a spinner just because... it wasn't meant to be no soup! (´•ω•`๑)
2. Staples Pantry
When you're directing your diet to somewhere more "clean" and "wholesome" without the assistance from the realm of restaurants and cafes... It's less alone standing in a kitchen of varied offerings.
I started ingredients-shopping when I wanted to prepare my own meals through university.
And there, I swirled, stumbled, spiraled into the plane of supermarket and whole foods. And like endless city lights, my eyes just never shut.
Extra virgin olive oil, another whole earth of herbs and spices, fascinating lines of nuts and seeds and what they could become, the unexplored textures of couscous, bulgur and quinoa, the politely strong punch of unami from soy and anchovies... how was I never here?
And till today I'm unsure how to approach this: the excitement dropping away from dining out, these new limitations that felt like a stranger, but now such a close being, and the weird-ness some people find from it all.
But if it made for an enjoyable meal, what's left to complain?
3. Food Processor
Again, if preparing your own food is glimpsing you into some rushes of feverish inspiration, a food processor is a MUST!
These blades of speed had, without doubt, wheeled me into some of the most delirious acai, dips, nut butters and frozen desserts experience.
I remember the night quite clearly: my brother and I, our first contact with Toum (a Lebanese garlic dip).
It was like that unbelieving day of my childhood when I first tasted Roti John with my father, and all that swung out of my childish mental vocabulary bank was: Just what wonderful taste is this?!
Toum is absurdly underrated, and where else in Singapore but the menu of Urban Bites can I find it remains an unresolved question.
So what other option did we have but to make it ourselves - and there begun my first experience with a proper food processor (not some blender or mini processor from Target). And then life just started getting only better.
4. Food Storage
A fairly recent relationship that blossomed out of guilt and sadness at my plastic use, I first encountered Stasher reusable bags at The Green Collective (Funan Mall). I was sold on the colors, but the price....! *swallows saliva nervously* ( ⚆ _ ⚆ )
But my thoughts that kept weakly circling back to them, and eventually I am in the store again... at the cashier! How did this happen?
In the end, I used them so much that it just justified those menacing numbers. And I didn't feel so bad anymore about plastic waste.
That and also I finally stopped hurting, bruising bananas, and treating my bags to an unwelcomed yellow smoothie. (⊙△⊙✿)
5. Water Bottle
I won't lie: I relish in the capitalistic brilliance of the buzzwords "sustainability", "green", "eco", "reusable". With all of my senses of logic gladly knocked out of existence, yes. *inserts loop gif of reeling eyes and gaping mouth*
My short stint in Melbourne city surrounded and overwhelmed my mind, body, soul, quite palpably. I was so immensely drawn to Swell bottles, like moths to the light, and that teakwood print...? Where do I pay? (ლ ۞ิ ჴ ۞ิ)ლ
The purchase lasted me years though, it pulled me through winter mornings with the warmth of boiled water that was protected through long nights. And even back in Singapore I have used it to the point it does not even look like teakwood anymore.
The best part is that I drink so much more water, and for years I have been drinking at least 3 liters a day. Still, it could be criminal. Like when I finish my office's drinking water before the renewal. ༼ ಥ﹏لಥ ༽ ᵘgᵍʰ
6. Exercise Gear
Exercise and sweating don't feel the same when you are in your favorite colors and a flattering fit.
I hate to be the basic bish that continually raves over Lululemon, but I lowkey am....! (≧д≦ヾ)
Truthfully, I feel the best in the fabrics of Spiritual Gangster and Lululemon (though the latter's yoga mats don't last past two years). And admittedly I have not explored much other brands, but what more is there to risk and realise when you're already quite blissfully satisfied?
A pair of running shoes, a durable Yoga mat, and a passion for the discipline. And exercise suddenly equalised to an anticipated event.
7. Gym & Yoga Memberships
Not even the most contented introvert escapes the flushes of convulsing loneliness. As much as humans are visual, we are also social. Communities, relationships and family thrive for a reason - human connection?
I haven't made much friends in studios and gyms, but having somewhere to go, a familiarity of faces, and a jog through the progressive journey of others... They can all enkindle some form of encouragement and solidarity.
Self-Care and Realisation
8. Skin Care
Routines are sometimes good for mental health, they provide order in the chaos of a day's endless permutations.
I'm not sure why moisturising feels so true to self-care, perhaps it's the idea you are doing something good to yourself. A sunscreen religion has also improved my skin tremendously, and that's one less thing to feel negatively about.
9. Journal & A Pen
I love writing, and it's a different experience on paper. Words start to take up more weight, because there is no ease of "Select" and "Backspace". You think more before you write, and the extended distance between you and Google forces you to swim deep within the breadths of your brain for that right word to use. And so much more satisfying and original it feels. What's more: sketching, doodling, imagining.
10. A Blog
This space presents me so much more functionality than just a sanctuary that floats in cloud.
It's a meeting point for my thoughts and experiences, and a telescope into my Self and my interests.
It also forces through what could have remained shallow passions: for now I make my points after finding them in deeper research and thought.
To have a room where I can collect my interests for design, writing, Yoga and ruminations makes for a much more wholesome life experience. What used to drift in fragments now magnetizing into a blurry picture, but it looks beautiful... ༼♥ل͜♥༽
To find ten things that have helped refine my physical and mental health which I suppose most of us do not already have, but possibly could: that was the whole purpose of this post.
I wanted to include Spotify, for the app has expanded my musical exposure, pulled me through depressing times and helped me find the genres and subcultures I could sit comfortably in.
But I'm fairly certain it is already an everyday app for the most of us. I mean, if you're already reading this, please don't tell me you do not have access to the internet!
We don't always have to spend money to inspiring healthier living, and here are some proven ways I don't:
1. Hiking/ walking.
Anywhere, from around my place, to parks, to roadsides. It's peaceful and doesn't cost a dollar.
2. Strolling along shelves of the library.
Browsing and finding something to pass time in the library is possibly one of the most enriching experience. When we read, we slightly remove ourselves from our ego and circumstances, and we learn new things.
3. Online Yoga classes.
I just love this, it is free but incredible for focus and opening me up to more creative ways of sequencing.
4. Appreciating Instagram artists.
Again, on the topic of subculture. I big-time dig digital illustration and sad cat memes. Instagram acts as a wonderful platform. It also makes me feel less alone in taste... some way or another!
Most underrated health activity ever, although it is arguably not that free... If I sleep on a task, it's definitely costing a lot! (ノ^∇^)
I hope you enjoyed the post, and Thank You for reading.