With some of the stricter lockdown restrictions being lifted here in the UK and with life slowly resuming back to the pre-pandemic norm we appreciate it can be a very difficult time for some. Over the past year we have all had to focus inward, making our homes our sanctuaries, and our self care rituals a priority. However, with work, social and life demands now returning back to a faster pace, it can feel really overwhelming. The first necessary step in accepting this new phase is to allow yourself to feel whatever it is that comes up. Whether you feel anxious, excited, overwhelmed, afraid or ecstatic, all of these feelings are valid. You may feel like the precious time you had to dedicate to your self care ritual is slowly slipping away. To help you still manage to find your moment of calm, be inspired by our quick and effective self care ideas below.
What is self care?
If self care is something that’s new to you, in a nutshell it refers to anything that helps you to care for your health (that includes your physical, emotional or spiritual health). Many practice self care by taking time out of their day to spend on activities that they enjoy and that nourish the mind, body and soul. Although many can see this kind of ritual as a luxury, it is a really important practice to help you to stay healthy and well.
1 - Set an intention
Sometimes life can feel like it is running 100mph and everything is just happening to us.. To take back control, start becoming intentional with your day. One great way to implement this is by starting your day with an intention setting ritual. You can either state your intention for the day out loud or write it down. To really supercharge your intention, light a Crystal Intention Candle that supports your goal. For example if your intention is to have a really calm day, then the Amethyst Crystal Intention Candle would be a great match. Want to have a day filled with loving interactions? Then use the Rose Quartz Crystal Intention Candle.
2 - Spend at least 5 minutes everyday doing something you love
We all have obligations in our lives and when we are out of balance it can feel like duties are taking over. To help restore balance, take at least 5 minutes out of your day to do something you truly love. This can be something as simple as sitting down to enjoy your favourite cup of herbal tea, contacting a loved one, reading a magazine or cooking your favourite meal. The more you do things you love the more your positive magnetism will build in your aura, which in turn will attract more positive things into your life.
3 - Mindfulness
Meditation can seem really daunting especially when you are just starting out. Even though the concept may seem simple there are so many styles out there to try, finding the perfect one for you can feel really overwhelming. When first adding mindfulness to your day, keep it simple, even practicing for 2 minutes can help to improve your attention and focus. Mindful breathing is a great way to get started. This can be done either seated or standing, simply breathe in through your nose for a count of approximately 6 seconds and out through the mouth for 6 seconds. While doing this focus your attention solely on the breath. If thoughts do arise during this practice that is totally normal, acknowledge them and then return your focus back to the breath.
4 - Digital Detox
Everywhere you go nowadays people are glued to their phones. Although there are great benefits that come from having our phones they can also become addictive. If you are finding that your nightly Instagram scrolling habit is hijacking your evenings then set yourself a phone-free night time curfew. Not only will this free up your time to reallocate to things you love but ditching the screens before bed can also result in a better night's sleep, win-win!
5 - Move your body
Don’t worry if the thought of doing a HIIT workout in the gym is enough to make you break into a sweat. Each of our bodies are completely unique, so it’s only natural that we all enjoy different ways of moving. Try making your exercise a time to have some fun, do something that really lights your soul up. Whether that’s creating a peaceful atmosphere with a candle and practicing some gentle yoga poses. Or strapping on your ice skating boots for an invigorating game of ice hockey. It doesn't matter, just do something you love and enjoy the positive effects this will have on both your body and your mind.
6 - Gratitude
Our egoic minds can be quick to pick up on everything that is making us unhappy, yet pinpointing the things we are truly grateful for can feel slightly more challenging. Practicing gratitude can be one of the most life changing self care rituals to adopt. People who regularly practice gratitude experience more positive emotions, sleep better, are more compassionate and even have stronger immune systems. Start by keeping a gratitude journal, add to it with at least three things that you are grateful for every single day. Have a flick back through your journal whenever you are having a particularly challenging day to remind yourself of all the joy that you’ve experienced within your life.
7 - Listening to uplifting music
If you are a music lover then this is a great self care ritual for you. Simply tune into your favourite song and allow your mind to focus on the music. If you do this while at home then blast your song out loud and dance around like no-one's watching. Or if you are out in public then plug your headphones in and drown out the outside world. Taking a quick moment to enjoy some music you love can have a great impact on stress reduction and can increase your mindfulness.
8 - Take a bath
Taking a bath is a great way to have a time-out in your day. Use this time to switch off your electrical devices and create a calm and relaxing experience. Light a candle and fill your bathroom with a scent you love. Allow your body to soak in products that are nourishing for your skin, such as bath bombs or bath soak. The warm water will help you to relieve any tension that your mind or body may be holding. You can combine your time in the bath with one of our other recommended self care rituals such as listening to uplifting music, practicing mindfulness or setting an intention.
9 - Self Massage
For some of us paying to go for regular massages may seem like a bit of an extravagance, however, you can still get many of the massage benefits for free and from the comfort of your home. Try introducing self massage into your self care routine. Although at first it may feel a little strange and uncomfortable to rub your own body, it is a great way to relieve stress and it encourages the nervous system to re-set. If this still doesn’t feel comfortable then try using a tool such as Gua Sha which you can use to massage your skin with.
10 - Set boundaries
Setting boundaries is a healthy act of self care. With social activities starting back up it may feel overwhelming having to commit to doing things that are making you feel anxious. If this is the case then don’t be afraid of setting boundaries and only committing to things you feel comfortable and excited to do.
We hope these tips have helped, but of course for more serious health concerns please seek medical advice.