Self-love is one of the greatest gifts you can give to yourself. Many of us are hard on ourselves, with negative self-speak or pushing ourselves to our limits, so it is important to take a moment to take care of yourself.
A little TLC can go a long way during a long work week, or when you’re dealing with the kids stuck at home. Here are several great ways to give some love back to yourself!
Not only does working out help you lose weight, along with a myriad of other benefits, but exercise can help significantly improve your mental well-being. In fact, something as simple as walking for 30 minutes every day can greatly improve your mood. Throw in some greenery and a natural change of scenery during your walk, and you can find yourself feeling refreshed and your mood lightened instantaneously.
Exercise, despite its poor reputation, can also be incredibly fun! Try something like a dancing video on YouTube, or rock climbing at a nearby gym, to reduce that pressure of “exercising.” Instead, like hiking or riding your bike, you can burn calories while enjoying yourself and leading an active lifestyle.
With a workout buddy, you can plan social activities around exercise, like playing tennis or kayaking. Exercise has been shown through multiple studies to prevent early-onset Alzheimer’s, dementia and heart disease. Although it might not feel like it, a good exercise routine is a great way to show your body and mind some love!
Grab your yoga mat or a comfy pillow and take a seat on the ground. Meditation is an invigorating way to begin your morning, or to take a break from your hectic day. When you meditate, this is your moment to unwind, reflect, and disconnect from the physical world.
There are many reasons why you should try meditation, but the biggest reason is to strengthen your connection with your inner self. Meditation is a rejuvenating, and often positive, experience that can ground you when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Several meditation techniques have been popularized, which include guided meditation, mindfulness meditation, concentrative meditation and open awareness. Each technique has a specific focus, and they are conducted differently.
Guided meditation often utilizes a meditation instructor in a class, or through a recording. Mindfulness meditation focuses on concentration and awareness. Concentrative meditation encourages dedicative focus on a single point of concentration, such as the inhale and exhale of your breathing or the flickering of a candle. Open awareness, however, encourages your mind to perceive everything occurring around you. It is best to try each type of meditation and see what works best for you!
Cucumber slices, mud baths, and salt scrubs are an excellent way to pamper yourself at the end of a long week. Pre-COVID-19, a trip to the spa was a sure-fire way to get this rest and relaxation time in one place. However, there’s nothing stopping you from having a spa day in the comfort of your own home!
You can grab a friend, a fluffy towel, and treat yourselves to the many spa treatments you’d get from the spa in the comfort of your own home. If you’re unsure of where to begin, one such treatment offered when pampering yourself is permanent hair removal with a laser, manicures/pedicures, or soothing scalp massages with essential oils. Whatever treatments you need to relax, you can find a way to do it at home.
If you would prefer a place to escape rather than staying home, gather a small group of friends (who have been quarantining or socially distancing) and find a place to meet outside to have your spa day. Find a nice patch of grass to stretch out on with your face mask in place, or a natural body of refreshing water to dip your toes in while you relax. Give yourself this time to pamper yourself and decompress.
Go Through & Update Your Wardrobe
Out with the old, in with the new! Nothing says confidence quite like the clothes we wear. Our wardrobe is the first thing people see, and one of the best ways to get your message out into the world. Quit holding onto the clothes that make you feel anything less than fabulous.
Your wardrobe is an essential part of who you are – if you are classy, bold, vibrant, quirky, or anything in between – and every piece you own should say something about you. If that one raggedy sweatshirt makes you feel like a potato sack – get rid of it. Maybe you have one too many holes in those jeans and they don’t accentuate the best part of your figure – it’s their time to go!
This process – much like cleaning out your room, your desk, or any of your spaces – helps you to prioritize what you value most. If you want to feel confident, put together and in control, your first step is to get yourself organized. This organization process can either begin, or it can end, in the closet.
Do Something You Love Today
Perhaps you love to play the piano, or you have a passion for knitting, but you don’t often feel like you have the time to spend doing something you actually enjoy. Instead, your life is full of the monotony of everyday life – appointment booking, commuting, homework, basic human functioning, etc.
Take a little bit of time out of your day to do something you love, instead of something to escape or something you have to do. Remember that you are a bookworm, or a cinephile, or a person who loves to cook, and that you have the right to do something you enjoy. Make yourself, and what you enjoy, a priority!