How often do you find yourself feeling overwhelmed with more to-do’s than hours in the day? With hustle-culture and the glorification of busy being the hallmarks of our social system, it’s no wonder! It’s been refreshing to see a surge of companies, practitioners and influencers singing the praises of self-care. In fact, self-care has become a bit of a buzz word, taking the wellness industry by storm. Brands are coming out of the woodwork with lotions, potions, elixirs and bath bombs marketed to wipe away your woes.
What is Self-Care About, Anyways?
Although face masks and aromatherapy baths are delightful, these practices can actually miss the point when it comes to self-care. To me, self-care runs far deeper than regular pampering and nights in to Netflix & Chill. It’s more about holding space for yourself, meeting yourself where you’re at and prioritizing nurturing your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Sometimes this means physical rest or pampering, and sometimes self-care means having the discipline and courage to call yourself out on bad habits and do the work to replace them. Without regular self-care, you might find yourself burnt out or face to face with the consequences of allowing toxic cycles to take up more energetic real estate than they should.
Learning Your Self-Care Cues
Building a self-care toolkit and tailored practices can only happen once you’ve learned to listen to your needs. We’ve become so good at tuning out perceived inconveniences like rest and time for self that the subtle cues our minds, bodies and spirits send us are often overlooked. There’s an adage that says, “you can’t pour from an empty cup” and it’s never been more relevant. Self-care is about coming back into your body so that you know when you need rest, nourishment, movement or healing. It’s about checking in with your mental and emotional health and being willing to feel your feelings and have peace with your process. This tuning in will enable you to start meeting your needs and filling up your cup, which will in turn have you show up as your most productive, magnetic and healthy self.
Crafting Your Self-Care Practice
Once you’ve learned to listen to your needs, you can begin testing out different practices and building your personalized self-care routines. The nourishment you need day to day may vary, so having some options in your back pocket is helpful. Here are a few ideas to consider as you learn your unique self-care language:
- Come back into your body with self-massage or dry brushing
- Practice meditation, stillness and breath-work
- Do something grounding like Forest Bathing
- Talk it out with a psychologist or counsellor
- Move your body through exercise or gentle movement
- Sit with your thoughts through journaling
- Show up for yourself by keeping promises to yourself
- Learn to say NO when you mean no, and YES when you’re lit up
- Get your creative energy flowing by making something
- Nourish your body with whole foods and plenty of water
- Pamper yourself with a spa day, either at home or out
- Unplug from technology or do a social media detox
Remember, self-care is a practice. Check in frequently with yourself and experiment until you find what makes you feel most nourished and whole. What is your current relationship with self-care like? What are your go-to self-care practices? Share below in the comments!!
As a Wellness Advisor and certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, Kelsey is excited to be a part of your wellness journey as a source of support, knowledge and community. It is her belief that when we learn to connect within; cultivating a strong mind-body-spirit relationship, healing becomes a more simple and intuitive process. The better we know ourselves, how to advocate for and express our needs, our work with practitioners, healers and medicine becomes a beautiful and transformative experience.