Self care is something that is unique to each of us. It is a discipline that we can adopt and practice …regularly and often.
As our world becomes increasingly chaotic with COVID, restrictions, financial and economical fears, climate change worries, biodiversity collapse, diversity issues, racial inequalities, … and so many, hope that gets my point across. I feel my own system becoming activated creating this list. So…
Self-care tip # 1: pause, place hand on heart, and bring attention to the breath…breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth slowly. Allow the body to relax and release tension systematically.
Alright, phew, one out of the way…
These are some of my absolutely favourite ways to do self-care for myself. So, enjoy!
Self-care can be mental, like journalling.Journal…in a beautiful notebook, on your computer, or in a note app on your phone.
Self-care tip # 2: Journal dump your thoughts and freely write until you feel complete.
Self-care tip #3: Journal to recognize your strengths. The daily stresses of life can take a toll on our wellbeing. So,
- take a moment to write down what you like about yourself. Write down your strengths. Write down what you’re good at, like making a yummy cup of hot chocolate or deep listening or caring about animals.
- Think about the last time you used them, and write about that experience.
- Notice how you feel now.
- Brainstorm a future time when you can put your strengths to use in the near future.
Solitude can be extremely healing, whether that be sitting by the window with your self and a cup of yumminess (I’m thinking hot cocoa, but pick your own). Practicing mindfulness can also be potentially beneficial.
Self-care tip # 4: Practice mindfulness of breath. Breathing in and out, slowly and with awareness, relaxing the body on the out breath.
Self-care tip # 5: Set boundaries. Say “no” when you mean no, and don’t be apologetic about it unless you actually feel sorry.
Self-care tip # 6: Setting bedtime and morning routines that are nurturing for you. Go to bed early. Get plenty of sleep. Don’t look at your phone first thing in the morning. Whatever. Decide what you’d like to implement, and schedule it in.
Self-care tip # 7: Practice gratitude. I have a little journal that is special for my gratitude practice. You can also just take some time to recall what you are grateful for. The first time you do this it might feel forced and uncomfortable. With more practice, you’ll find your gratitude list growing and also able to express gratitude more openly to the people in your life.
Self-care tip #8: Move your body!
Sensual, physical things can be extremely beneficial for self-care. Things to do with touch, taste, smell, sight, and sound.
Self-care tip # 9: Take a bath. Use epsom salt. Burn a nice smelling, soy wax, candle. Use essential oils, like lavender or clary sage. I am currently based in the Pacific Northwest, so cedar has been my go to in a way to also connect to the land. Turn the lights down low. Put on some funky music, whatever your jam is, or lay in silence. Gently massage your body, infusing your touches will self-love and self-compassion.
Or, set up your space with things that you adore. These can be objects from your family that remind you of your ancestors and culture, or favourite trinkets from travelling. Just remember the five senses that you want to interact with: sight, smell, touch, sound, … I’m not so sure about taste tho… I’ll let you figure that out for yourself!
Self-care tip # 10: Eat lots of fruits and veggies. Drink plenty of water. Consume less caffeine. Take care of your gut health.
Self-care tip # 11: Know when you need support. All of these tips are wonderful suggestions, that are beautifully supportive for our evolution, but also know when you need therapy. Having someone truly see and hear me has been so healing for me. Coaching, womxn’s groups, or therapy groups are extremely nurturing. Sometimes doing it by yourself is not self-care and you need someone to hold space for you. Get real and listen your needs.
Ultimately, self-care is extremely individual to each person. We must all navigate our own way with bringing it into our lives. It is necessary and highly beneficial for us to become resources, resilient, peaceful individuals in this crazy world.