Recently I’ve been thinking about the seasons. And more importantly how we, as humans, need to adapt to each season and lean into what will benefit us the most. For example, winter brings dark nights and colder temperatures. Animals go into hibernation and flowers close up. As humans it’s time for us to rest, recuperate and plan for spring, summer and even autumn, when we can blossom again.
I wanted to talk today about making yourself a priority, self care ideas and following mother nature’s advice of bunkering down for the coldest season and getting yourself ready for spring when your new roots will appear.
In today’s society, when everything is so fast paced and instant, we rarely have time to breathe, never mind looking after ourselves properly. We don’t eat the right things because after getting in late from work, we want something quick and easy to eat in front of Netflix. We “don’t have time to exercise” because we already have so much to do through the day, and you ignore minor health issues because you don’t really have time to squeeze a doctors appointment in.
Looking after your mind, body and soul becomes a second priority to everything else in your life.
I wrote about this on Instagram last night and so many of you commented to say you were exactly the same. December was funny old one for me; I felt completely out of sorts and even though there wasn’t anything particularly wrong, I knew I need to spend a little time just making myself a priority. And you know what? Taking some time away and concentrating on me meant my motivation levels were back up and I felt balanced again, ready to take on the start of a fresh new year.
So today I wanted to share some of the easy self care ideas you can follow to make yourself a priority again.
Depending on your personality, it can be very easy to get caught up in the stress of everyday life if your mind is set that way. For me, whether it might be dealing with chasing invoices, or having to fit too much in my day because I’ve got 101 things going on, I make a conscious decision whether I want to rent headspace to that worry. If not, I’ll catch that thought and let it fly away. If, however, I can’t shake the worry, I will make a plan of action of how to deal with it.
Stress can cause so much damage to your body. In the past, I’ve lost hair, had really bad skin outbreaks, flare-ups of digestive issues and developed shoulder and neck pain (where I store tension) – a lot of which amounts to high levels of stress. So, when you find yourself getting into that stressful mindset, take a step back and assess whether it’s worth it. I bet it’s not.
So many people struggle to find that ideal work/life balance, me especially, so I developed a schedule that plays up to my strengths. I’ve found since learning to manage my own time, that I like to start work later in the morning, once I dedicate an hour or so to my morning routine, which involves meditation, journaling and affirmations. I seem to be my most creative on an evening so instead of working 14-hour days, I’ve swapped my evening tasks to the morning and I’m back to working 8 hours (11am-7pm).
Buy something just for you
I think the term “treat yo’self” became pretty much the buzzword of last year, and even though I’m not a huge fan of excessive spending, what I will always try to do is treat myself to something once a month, once the bills have been paid and I’ve got a little disposable income.
One way to treat yourself is to book maybe a weekend spa break, or even just a massage and facial one afternoon. It’s about spoiling yourself for just a couple of hours guilt-free and understanding that the better you feel, the better others around you will feel too. If your energy is restored and in a high vibration, then you’ll attract a similar energy.
Other self care ideas include reiki, reflexology, or even crystal healing if you’re looking for a little spiritual you time.
As mentioned above, I’m really enjoying going to the gym on a morning and getting my workout done and dusted for the day before I have the chance to talk myself out of it. One choice I made last year was to pay for a personal trainer and it was the best decision I made. I struggle with the motivation to get to the gym, despite feeling amazing once I leave, so having an appointment with someone who can push me, means I make the most of my membership and use muscles I didn’t even know I had.
I know being able to afford a personal trainer is a privaledge but I would recommend seeing if you can break it down to pay for 30 mins and you do 30 mins of cardio by yourself first. Or even partner with a friend. I do the former and pay £12.50 a session, which is probably what I’d spend going to the shop for magazines and sweets on an evening.
I’ve also found that the days I work out, even if it’s just for half an hour, my productivity levels are so much higher than the days I choose to forget about exercise. Just taking 30 minutes a day for you, to either stretch, go for a walk or hop on the cycling machine at the gym, can really alter your whole mindset.
Sometimes (OK, all the time) I become consumed by social media and the Internet. I take my phone everywhere. I even check my phone whilst I’m on the laptop. I have it next to me in bed, I have it with me when I go on holiday. I’m a 24-hour social media addict.
Yet I know I know it can be so damaging.
We’ve become accustomed to having everything at our fingertips. If we want to know a question, we ask Google. If we want to get some inspiration, we head to Pinterest. If we want to speak to our friends, we Whatsapp. But sometimes we need a break from technology. Which is why I’m consciously trying to switch my phone to flight mode from 9pm onwards now. That means no laptops in bed and no checking Instagram before I sleep. And it really does mean I sleep better.
I hope this post of self care ideas has been of some use for you and if you’re going through the same burn out I was then please do get in touch and let me know either how you got through it or what changes you’re going to make to lead a better, balanced lifestyle. We only get one body, let’s treat it the best way we can.