Sweet Nostalgia has a warm glow and tastes like a soft cinnamon swirl. You are romanticising the past, in a way to make yourself feel good and have more meaningful relationships.
There will be days when you wish you were somewhere else or doing something else. Looking at old photos and listening to the songs from your youth are some of the easiest ways to bring sweet nostalgia to your day.
There are other ways that are also fun and you can enjoy them during your lunch break.
Be strategic about your lunch hour. Make the most of it and remind yourself, that taking a proper mental break from your work is how you improve your creativity and productivity in the long run.
1. Play a game of Solitare
Do you remember the sound of your old Microsoft Windows keyboard and mouse click? It’s in that soft sound of clicking and moving the cards from one pile to the other, that I personally find very pleasantly satisfying. It takes me about 5 minutes to complete the game.
I also love a good colorful game of Mahjong. Keeping my concentration sharp is one of my favorite ways to do active meditation. I love clearing the table and matching the symbols. Why don’t you play a game of Mahjong yourself?
2. Write a small real paper note to your best friend
If you are lucky enough you have kept in touch with at least one of your childhood friends then write then a note.
Talking or messaging on one of the numerous platforms can not replace a real note written with your favourite pen. There is something uniquely personal about it.
Simply write a few words from the heart and this will make you both feel good.
3. “Visit” Your Hometown via Google Earth
“There is no place like home.”. Yes, as the years go by and “Home” becomes more of a feeling rather than an exact location.
You can feel at home in many places, including your actual home.
Can you remember the exact time just before dinner, when you were a child? When your parents were in the kitchen preparing food and you were in your room or in your living room, simply relaxing and waiting to be called to eat. That is a wonderful nostalgic feeling when you were cared for and loved.
Use Google Earth and find your exact childhood address and take a look at the places where you used to play, where you went to school, and may the place where you had your first kiss. All these wonderful moments and memories add up to a sweet nostalgia cocktail for you to enjoy during your lunch break.
4. Give yourself a mini spa experience
There are particular smells that can transport you right into a happy place in the past. Maybe it’s the smell of freshly cut grass or dried leaves in October.
Maybe it’s a specific dish, that you cooked with a loved one -a lemon cake or bread.
May it’s the smell of a new book in a bookstore or an ice cream shop that you visited with your granny.
May it’s the smell of candy floss at the fair or the fresh breeze at the seaside.
In whatever your nose buds help you to be transported with-find it. Keep it in your bag. If you can visit a similar place near where you work. This is so simple and yet so effective to lift your mood.
5. Re-read a favorite book/story/poem
Some stories have the ability the capture your imagination since you were very young trying to make sense of the world around you. Some of the best memories are created when you are lost in a story of a good book. The words that have excited you years ago can be the exact lift you might need during your lunch break.
Poems have the ability to bring wonderful emotions with words. Maybe you have a favourite poem and like to read it from time to time.
It is a wonderful therapy -the art of words. It brings gratitude and perspective to your life. One little step at the time.
Use nostalgia when you need a psychological lift or motivation. There is ongoing research on the subject and a key element of healthy nostalgia is to avoid comparing your present with the past in terms, that in the old days things were better. This will only bring you anxiety and discomfort, which is the exact opposite of how pleasant and sweet nostalgia is.
Overall remember that whatever activity you pick, has to bring you a bittersweet sense of gratitude that you are here and that you are living your life to the best of your ability. Whether that is playing a good colorful game of Mahjong or writing a few words to an old friend don’t put it off. The best time to do anything is NOW.