In our fast-paced, modern society, it’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of life, putting your own personal needs on the back burner. This is one of the many reasons why I am a huge promoter of regular self-care rituals.
Self care extends far beyond simply showering each day. Self care rituals involve all areas of body, mind and spirit, and are extremely important for everyone. They are especially important for women, who are much more prone to anxiety and depression. Taking care of yourself, both physically and mentally, can really improve your daily life, your self-esteem, and your overall well-being.
I often ask clients what self-care rituals they include in their life, and frequently hear, “I’m too busy to take time out for myself”, or instead of telling me what they do for themselves, they start talking about what they do for their children. I’ll be the first to admit that when I had my kids, my entire life focus was on them. But over time, I realized that taking time out for myself was vital in order for me to be a better mother.
Here are some great ideas for self-care rituals that you can implement daily, without feeling guilty:
Take an Epsom Salt Bath
Stress and lack of sleep deplete the levels of magnesium in our bodies. Magnesium is an extremely important mineral that the human body needs. Our modern day diets do not provide us with enough magnesium.
Magnesium actually helps the body regulate over 325 different enzymes. It also helps many areas of the body to function properly, such as muscle repair and control, electrical impulses, energy production, stable moods, and the elimination of toxins from within the body.
Taking a bath in Epsom salts helps to replenish the body of this essential mineral. During an epsom salt bath, the magnesium in the epsom salts is absorbed in through our skin and travels directly into our bloodstream. It’s one of the best ways to replenish this essential mineral within the body.
With the busy, hectic lives that we live nowadays, meditation is a practice that is becoming increasingly popular and increasingly important. If you do not practice meditation, you really should try implementing it into your daily life.
I began learning the practice of meditation when I was 11 years old. My dad taught me the beginning practices of meditation to help me relax and fall asleep at night. As time went on, i realize the benefits of meditation more and more. I try to mediate as often as possible and have already started to teach my children (3 years and 6 years) the importance of deep breathing exercises.
If you feel stressed, over-worked, or if you often feel unhappy, impatient or frustrated, meditation is the perfect self-care ritual for you. Meditation, overtime, will help to make your mind calmer, clearer and more focused. Start out with a simple five minute deep-breathing meditation each day, and as you become more comfortable with the practice, you can increase the time that you meditate for. Another great way to start is through guided meditation.
Go For a Walk In Nature, Alone
Whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, it is important to spend some time alone once in awhile. My favourite thing to do when I have some alone time is to go for a walk in nature.
Going for a walk in nature, alone with your thoughts, can be extremely therapeutic. Breathing in fresh air (and oxygen if you’re amongst trees), absorbing some Vitamin D, and getting in some exercise has so many benefits, both physically and mentally. In fact, walking in nature can help to reduce depression and anxiety, and improve your mental health and your overall well-being.
While I admit that I do not do it often enough in the winter (I live in Canada – enough said), I try to get out as often as I can in the Spring, Fall and Winter. I often come up with my best ideas and action plans when I go for a peaceful walk in nature. If you listen quietly, your intuition will speak loudly!
Massage Your Face
Most conventional facials and even the care you give your skin at home only address the epidermis, the top layer of skin that is only 0.1mm thick. 0.1mm is the same thickness as a sheet of printer paper. The beauty industry has taught everyone for years now that skin health comes topically, and most facials in the spa industry still only focus on this top layer of skin .
But what about the other 0.3mm – 1.6mm of skin below the visible surface where real skin function actually occurs? These are the layers where tension occurs, preventing proper blood flow, reducing oxygen flow and blocking vital lymphatic flow, all of which can negatively impact the look and health of your skin.
You don’t have to have a professional facial to enjoy all the benefits of a good facial massage. This is something you can do for yourself at home. In fact, the more you practice this massage, the more you will begin to see accumulative results, which is why I recommend this massage daily.
Read a Book
You may not think of reading as a self-care ritual, but it truly can be a fantastic one. Regardless of how much stress you experience in your life, whether it be work-related, in your personal relationships, or any other area of your life, those feelings of stress can quickly disappear when you lose yourself in a good book.
Reading has many benefits and can be a great form of stress-relief. It helps to stimulate your mind, and it can also improve your memory, concentration and focus, which can be invaluable as we age.
There are many other forms of self-care rituals that you can practice daily, but these ones are my personal favourites. It is so important to take time away from your busy schedule, and do something to nurture your mind, body and soul.
If there are any self-care rituals that you enjoy, not listed above, please share them in the comments below.