It’s my birthday! I know everyone is celebrating. I mean why not? As I celebrate me day I wanted to give something back to all of you. September is Self Care Awareness month so I wanted to share what I’ve been doing for self care over the past year in hopes that you might find something that resonates with you.
Keep in mind self care is different for everyone so explore, notice what fills you up and what doesn’t. I have really explored my own care over the past year and some of these are still a work in progress, some of these get thrown out the window on a daily basis, some are more basic for when I’m really struggling and some are a little more fancy. If you are a beginner start with getting the basics down first—then feel free to go bigger. Remember it’s a practice and not about perfection.
Basics for Beginners:
Coffee | Coffee as self care, what? Okay let me explain. Instead of chugging the coffee, I savor it. It gives me a second to be present, to enjoy, to be mindful and be in the moment.
CBD | CBD has been a game changer not only for my headaches/migraines but for my anxiety. I take it in the mornings before anyone wakes up and helps me manage the chaos of the day. I love ordering mine from www.sunsoil.com
Vitamins | I told you we were starting basic. While my diet is much improved from what it was, I am a busy Mom and don’t always get the right amount of nutrients I need. I started taking regular vitamins last year and have noticed a difference in my energy and immune system. My go to are care of vitamins for travel and their packs are biodegradable.
Food | It’s been almost a full year since I gave up gluten and nightshades. Word is still out on whether it will help my cluster headaches. Here’s what I didn’t expect to happen though: my bloat is way down, I feel better, my stomach is happier, and I have less mood swings and irritability. Sticking with this has been a major struggle for me but it truly is a way to honor my body and love it. Not to mention I’m kinder to others (see irritability).
Aroma Therapy | This is a fairly new step in my self care. I realized how much scent affects me. So I started to play around with it and have found it especially effective in my office. If you can’t light a candle or diffuse some oils, try a new light perfume that makes you feel like a bad ass or drop of few oils on your wrist.
Morning Routine | This truly is a work in progress and one I often struggle with as a Mom. I KNOW I do better with a morning routine. I’ve never been one to hop straight out of bed and go to work. Now, when I am woken up by the call of my child I feel like I am already behind and the day is not my own. So I’m working to create some time for myself in the morning, even if it’s just a little bit, by getting up earlier, doing some quick deep breathing and stretches, and setting out as much as I can the night before to ensure the morning runs more smoothly.
Gratitude Journal | This has been a game changer for me and I’ve had to experiment some with what time of day works for me with this. Right now I’m jotting this down when I get to work and am going over my calendar for the day. I write down 5 things I’m grateful for, 5 Affirmations for my day, 5 Things I would like to Attract into my life, and 5 Intentions for the day. Full disclosure, this doesn’t happen every day. But most days it really does help.
Walking | Being sedentary at a desk all day truly does me no favors. So when its nice I walk around my building at lunch or walk up and down the stairs. It really helps give me energy for the afternoon and clear my mind.
Yoga | Ya’ll know I love yoga. Dedicating to my at home practice and adding in studio practices on the weekends where I can has really helped me be more mindful of my body, my breathing, and helps me work out the kinks.
Mediation | I LOVE Headspace. It’s great for a quick meditation and truly does reset me. I have also ventured into sahajaonline.com and they have some amazing online led meditations. Check it out if you’re looking to learn more. This is a great self love meditation by one of my favorite yoga teachers if you’re looking for somewhere to get started! https://youtu.be/CqnWMPuyT0g
Therapy | I started seeing a therapist once a month after my grandfather died and I just felt like I needed help processing some things. She’s helped me untangle some thoughts about myself as help structure my self care routines. Therapy can be a great way just to get another perspective on healthier ways to do things etc.
Lunches with myself | Sounds weird maybe but I’ve started trying to have lunches with myself. Basically I look at it as a date. What should you do on a date? You put your phone down and give the other person your full attention. You dream about where you want your life to go and things you want to achieve. So I’ve been trying to give myself this space to journal and dream.
Travel | Small bits of travel fill me up. I love feeling small in our amazing world.
Guests | I am an extroverted introvert so sometimes I need people to pull me out of myself. I love having people in our home.
Massages | I was having some serious issues with my neck and shoulders (weirdly stress related) and found an fantastic massage therapist. It’s not something I can do all the time but she works wonders both for my physical stress and my mood.
Choose to Do something for someone else | Grab lunch for someone, listen, make a phone call, or my favorite—send a card. Doing small things for others helps give me perspective and keep me from being too self focused.
Date Days | The husband and I had a revelation a little while ago that we don’t actually like date nights. We love date days. Everything we used to do together was driving, exploring, traveling so we’ve rewired our thinking and started finding babysitters for the daytime so we can have time together.
Less Screen Time | This one is a challenge for what I do but I’m working on trying to put my phone down at night and weed out mindless scrolling when I can.
Creative Projects | Trigger your creativity! Crochet! Knit! Write a book! Thinking outside of my normal creative pursuits is a wonderful challenge.
Being still and asking yourself what you need | THIS one is very much a work in progress. Sometimes the most important thing is taking a moment and getting honest with yourself. What do you WANT? What do you NEED? I especially have to do this with commitments. It’s hard for me to say no so I have to ask, is this actually going to fill me up? Or do I need to say no this time?
Hope this helps you on your continuous journey of self kindness. Remember you’re awesome, you’ve got this!