Joie de vivre is a very French idea that is personified in the way that we live in France. But you can enjoy a fuller life wherever you are, it’s not limited to only trips to the south of France or a vacation in the french capital. Sure, it’s a state of mind that is more cultural here because the work life balance is really important, and we typically don’t work just to live here.
I want to share with you some ways that life in France has made me slow down and take my self care up a notch.
Like I’ve mentioned before I truly believe that your own true joy lies within you. It’s an inside job, but that doesn’t mean you can’t ask for guidance or support. Ive found that being away from the hustle and grind of life in NYC as I knew it, I had to adopt to a slower pace, and also being away from my family I searched to created ways to build more stability in myself and with my new family.
Here are my 5 kickstart ideas to get more connected to to your own Joie de Vivre
- Good Sleep – a cosy uncluttered home is essential in feeling good at home. If you have a bedroom prepared for a relaxing night’s sleep, thats what will happen; there are feng shui tips here. But some quick fixes start with things such as inviting specific colors, nice soft sheets, or a little night time wind down music (or mantra) and a candle that soothes you and adds a layer of cosiness – you can prepare yourself for a bonne nuit! I make my own pillow spray with lavender and personally love to drink chamomile tisane to relax my mind and grab a book. I shut off screens and keep them away from my bed after 10pm. So I’m sleeping by 11pm.
- Enjoy the simple things + laughter – honestly one of the cheapest remedies is to do something nice for yourself and laugh. If you can do something nice for someone else and laugh even better! In Paris, simply going down from your apartment to have a coffee en terrasse with a friend, as people walk by and just to enjoy that movement is uplifting because you get out of your small apartment, you change scenery and you get in touch with a friend. You can also use this to be alone. To have a coffee at a cafe is a form of daily bliss that shows how important leisure is here au quotidien! These days everything is take-away, but having a coffee in a park is even better. You can ground yourself in nature surrounded by trees and greenery.
- Daily rituals – Speaking of daily habits ; maybe a morning routine like journaling, going for a walk in nature, etc or a nighttime skincare routine is perfect to feed your mind and body. I personally have a list of high vibration music and mantras that I work with daily because despite being a beautiful city, Paris is still a metropolitan city that has its trials on my emotions and spirits. Alone time and being creative have been essential to me being able to give from a full cup; est during quarantine.
- Good Food – the concept of eating seasonal fresh or organic food is very important to the french; it’s almost a status symbol here to shop at the organic market. It’s more accessible here than many countries. I’ve been reading a lot on the healing properties of food and accessibility and have come across this Dirty 12 and Clean 15 list. I love to cook almost every meal, and most french people will not eat processed foods like in the USA, we make our own salad dressing and even the frozen food from Picard is top quality. Yes we may go out and get a good burger (There’s a huge burger trend in Paris, I do not know why!) here and there, but 90 percent of the time good food is being made at home.
- Work life balance – The French have 5 weeks vacation per year, not to mention that we do have fewer work hours (depending on the industry), and we do take vacation time so important that you will be constantly asked “where are you going on vacation?” as much as “what is your name?”… There is no guild associated with taking time off, and no one is pressed to share how “hard” they have to work.
Perhaps you don’t have many vacation days, but are there some ways you could give more time to yourself to get away from work? Are there some ways you could fully disconnect when on vacation?
Here are some Parisian Women who exude joy and confidence on their instrgram
What are some ways you are practising self care?