31-Day Sleep Challenge
1. Create a self-care ritual: This week we will add self-care to our daily routine. Continue your morning and bedtime routine, and turning off the electronics and television 1-2 hours before bed. Now we are going to create a self-care ritual. This can be any time during the day, but the idea is to do something that makes you feel good. Self-care are intentional actions taken to meet our physical, emotional and spiritual needs. There are so many benefits of practicing self-care, such as reducing stress, supports a healthy immune system, reducing anxiety and depression, builds our confidence, makes us better caregivers and so much more.
Each day decide on one or more actions that you will take to practice self-care. One thing I would like to point out is to do something that is completely different from what you do for work. Or if you’re a stay at home mom, this doesn’t mean taking your kids to the movies. That IS fun and I love doing that, but this is a chunk of time is devoted just to you. Another example of this, I use to work in the animal welfare field and EVERYTHING I did in my life revolved around animals. When I wasn’t rescuing them, I was walking my dog, going to an agility class, cleaning my pig’s pen, playing with my cats. Everything involved an animal on some level. I loved doing all that, but had I taken better care of myself during that time and given myself a break from animals, I would have been a much healthier, happier person. And I would not have suffered as horribly as I did.
I have a nightly self-care ritual that I’ve done for the past 3 years. I take a shower before bed, usually with the lights off and burn a candle, while in the shower I meditate for 5-10 minutes. During my meditation, I think of all the wonderful things that I am grateful for and just breathe deeply (meditation can be that easy). After showering, I apply essential oils (usually Vetiver) with massage oil and give myself a massage and think of all the things good things I did that day for myself and others and how that made me feel. Since this challenge began, I have been turning on my Himalayan sea salt lamp and reading a book. I’ve noticed in just a week, my sleep is better and I wake up well rested.
Some self-care ideas:
· Getting a massage or facial
· Soak you feet in warm water and massage with essential oils
· Paint, draw, craft, playing an instrument, etc.
· Read a book
· Buy yourself a healthy delicious lunch, or make yourself one. Fill your thoughts with love and kindness as you create your meal. Then enjoy each bite slowly.
· Go for a walk or hike
· Dance or listen to your favorite music. Especially something from you junior or high school days
· Go horse back riding
· Saying “no” to something you don’t want to do, and DON’T feel guilty.
· Take a nap
· Learn something new
· Go to your favorite place and have a picnic or just sit quietly
· Have a dinner date with your best friend
· Turn of your phone and computer for the whole day
The list is endless. Just do something that feels good to you and nourishes your soul. Taking care of yourself first, allows you to continue to care for those that rely on you to care for them. So give your soul a big hug and start practice daily self-care.