By Bex, Events Director
Happy Valentine’s Day, folks! For a “holiday” that conjures up cliché after cliché (I love you to the moon and back. You are my heart’s desire. A rose by any other name...), Hallmark card after Hallmark card upon which you may find those clichés glorified, and box after box of those flavorless food-coloring infused heart candies rife with ”LOVE ME” neediness, we don’t focus as much on going inwards and asking: “How can I love myself more deeply?”
Here’s a more fitting self-love cliché in my opinion: “Time is of the essence.” Honestly. Is being an adult this hard for everyone? Why is it so hard to take care of myself?! Part of it has to do with time allocation. I thrive when I load my schedule with waaaay too much to possibly accomplish on any given day. While I want to do everything to take care of myself, self-care becomes yet another area of stress if don’t leave room for anything.
As someone who relishes new experiences, adventures, and spontaneity, “routine” has always been a word that I’ve felt best applied to what I want to do on the dance floor rather than, well, what I “should” do to my bed everyday: make it. However, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve embraced what I call: Routinized Ritual. Every morning and night, I set aside just a little bit of time for a few tools that help me enter and exit the day. They don’t require a luxury lifestyle or excessive amounts of time. The best part? It turns out that these daily acts of self-love help me remember to prioritize my own well-being and fit other acts of self-care into my day when extra time presents itself. An unexpected victory? I’ve made my bed every day this week!
Pick an amount of time that you can commit to and for yourself each and every day.
Morning? Night? Both? The important thing is that you are carving out just a little bit of time to remind yourself that you are worth it! Consider planning larger chunks of time (weekends, vacation, a random 3-hour chunk when you need it) for deeper self-care fests.
Choose 3 acts of self-care to gift yourself with today! These can rotate, or they can stay consistent. Give yourself the leeway to switch it up. You might find that these changes are weekly, monthly, seasonal, or completely random. “Go with the flow” would be the fitting cliché here.
Here are my current routinized rituals, completely subject to change:
I scrape my tongue and oil pull (let us know if you have questions about the details of those rituals,) which has somehow also made me love flossing. What?!
I drink one large glass of water followed by a large dose of L-theanine laden green tea during which I plot out the day ahead and set myself up for success
I dry brush my skin and oil it up before I shower--and butter it up again afterwards if it is a particularly dry time of year (like right now…)
A daily dose of exercise followed by a short stretch and self-massage
My gratitude practice: at the end of the day I like to write down at least three things that I’m grateful for
Grab-bag (because I still like to leave room for switching it up.) Tonight this will likely be a face mask. Last night, it was a long reading from the Mystic Mondays Tarot Deck. Tomorrow it might be an epsom salt bath.
More Acts of Self Love:
Burning incense, lighting a candle, or diffusing essential oils
Write your dreams down in a dream journal
Sweat! Go find an infrared sauna or a steam
Buy yourself flowers!
Talk yourself up in the mirror. It may feel awkward, but telling yourself how wonderful, beautiful, and accomplished you are has been proven in studies to support confidence and wellbeing.
Deep clean an area of your home with music blasting!
Take a yoga class, or just stretch a bit
Listen to good music and journal
Calling your parent, sibling, best friend
Garden! Buy a plant, water your plant, look at your plant
Sing or play an instrument
Read a book!
Take a meandering walk
Draw, paint, or color in a coloring book (Guess what? Finger painting is still fun when you’re an adult)
Find a swing-set and go for it! (Seriously… Also still fun when you’re an adult)
Meditate for a few minutes or longer, even if you think you don’t know how to meditate
Make yourself a special elixir, smoothie, tonic, or meal. Soup is my personal favorite.