Category: Words Of Wisdom (page 1 of 10)

How To Face The Mirror: Overcoming Body Image Issues And Developing Self-Love

A while back, I shared a bit about my inner struggles with insecurity in relation to my appearance. The way we view ourselves, particularly our bodies, can have a tremendous impact on the way we interact with the world. When you’re not comfortable in your own skin, it’s easy to cut yourself off from joy. You shield yourself. You act from a sense of fear and self-preservation. You fill yourself with doubt.

In short, it’s not a good place to be.

The root of these insecurities is a lack of confidence, a feeling of not being good enough as is. Of course, this can come from many places. From the cruel words of others, from the unrealistic expectations set by the media, from the way we talk about beauty as a culture.  Regardless of how you came to have this struggle, I want you to know you are not alone. You are not shallow. You are a human having a human experience.

It has taken me a long time and an incredible amount of work to get to a place where I feel good about myself. A lot of the techniques I’ve used, such as implementing a solid self-care routine, have already been shared on this blog. Today, I would like to share some of the exercises I have found most helpful in dealing with body image specifically.

The Lotion Ritual.

This is the single most helpful trick I’ve ever learned. After reading countless articles suggesting that you spend time in the mirror looking for things you like and even more articles focusing on saying loving things to yourself, I developed my own little routine that I built into my day.

Every morning, before you get dressed, whether it’s a shower day or not, stand naked in front of your mirror. Look at yourself, tell yourself you’re beautiful, even if you don’t feel that way at the moment. Grab your lotion, I don’t care if it’s something fancy and scented or plain old Lubriderm, and slowly apply it, starting with your legs and working your way up.  Massage it in and tell each part of your body that you love it and thank it for what it does for you. Thank your legs for carrying you around. Thank your butt for giving you a place to sit. Thank your tummy for holding in your guts or for carrying children. You get the idea. As you notice things you find beautiful, make note of it.

Once you get to your face, grab a suitable moisturizer and do the same. Focus on sending thoughts of love and beauty to yourself. It will feel silly at first, but I guarantee that over time it will become a powerful tool. You’ll start to appreciate the things that make you, you. You’ll find more things to love about your form. Those negative judgements will start to decline. You’ll stop thinking of yourself in parts and begin to see yourself as one cohesive being that is worthy of love. As an added bonus, you get super soft skin, and who doesn’t love that?

Focus on health rather than size or shape.

Too often I hear the criticism that body positivity and the act of accepting your body as is means throwing in the towel and “letting yourself go”. First of all, I hate that phrase “letting yourself go”. I also hate the idea of women being cruel to themselves because they don’t look exactly like someone else. The problem is, when you’re focusing so hard on what you don’t like about yourself, you take away your will-power to change the things that you can control. When you don’t love yourself, you don’t have the inclination to take care of your body. You treat yourself the way you feel you deserve to be treated.

 

body positivity body image,

 

Instead of striving for a perfect body, strive to treat yourself well. Drink more water. Eat better food, without denying yourself the pleasure of indulgent treats from time to time. Work out because you want to keep your body strong, not to fit into some narrow definition of the perfect body. Love your body as it is at each step of the journey. Remember that even if you were the fittest you could possibly be, there are somethings that cannot be changed without drastic surgery. It’s just genetics. Those differences are what make us uniquely beautiful.

Challenge your perceptions by replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.

Instead of focusing on something you hate (say, your thighs), focus on something you love (perhaps your shapely hips). Try to reframe the way you view your “flaws”. Those stretch marks are physical markers of your strength and resilience.  Your thick thighs prevent your lover from developing bruises during intimacy. If you stop to think about it, you can find something good about anything.

Whenever you catch yourself thinking one of the myriad of negative thoughts that can sneak up on us, immediately say to yourself, “that’s not very kind, I’m sorry” and then replace it with a positive. It takes time but you can retrain your brain to focus on healthier self-talk.

Appreciate beauty in other women.

This one can be especially difficult. Forget what you’ve been told is beautiful and really look at people. Whether they are on TV or in a magazine, or a person standing right in front of you, take them in. What do you think is beautiful about them? What makes them unique? Maybe you’ll find something in them that is similar to yourself and gain a greater appreciation for what you have. Maybe you’ll simply broaden your sense of how diverse people really are and challenge the narrow conception of beauty we have all been programmed with.

 

body positivity love yourself, stop comparing

 

Of course, there will be times when jealousy arises. When this happens, notice the feeling and then tell it to get lost. Remind yourself that a sunset and a flower are both beautiful, and they look nothing alike. Take a minute to think about your own body and what you like about it. Although I hate to give advice that furthers comparative thinking, it can be helpful to find a way to compare yourself favorably. Maybe you wish you had her breasts, but she may wish she had your eyes. Remember it’s all about perspective!

Focus on being present and truly experiencing life.

Slow down and really taste your food. Light some candles and inhale the scents deeply. Really feel the textures in everything that comes into contact with your skin. Indulge your senses! Notice what things make you feel good and what don’t, and strive to bring more of those good feelings into your life. Do the things that fill you with joy and confidence…and share them with others! The more you allow yourself to be present in your body and allow your body to serve you as an instrument of experience, the more you begin to appreciate all that it is capable of. This in turn helps you feel more comfortable in your skin, which then helps you feel more confident. And confidence is the sexiest thing a person can wear.

Learning to love your body won’t happen overnight. You will face setbacks. You just have to keep your eye on the prize, be gentle with yourself, and get yourself right back on the horse. Be intentional with your practice and celebrate your growth. Encourage the women around you to overcome their insecurities as well. Give them sincere compliments. Share the tips and tricks that have helped you. And most of all, enjoy the process.

 

The Right Amount Of Stuff: A Guide To Half-Assed Minimalism

It seems like we are all obsessed with the amount of stuff we have in our homes. We all spend way too much time fretting over not having enough stuff, wishing we had better stuff, or trying to rid our homes of unwanted stuff. Friends and family will gladly comment on our stuff, and there’s no shortage of articles to help us manage our stuff.

To be honest, I find it all a bit exhausting.

Depending on who you ask, I either have practically no stuff or I’m a borderline hoarder. I find this funny, as it perfectly highlights the differences of opinion when it comes to the right amount of objects a person should own.  Personally, I feel like I’ve more or less landed on the perfect amount of stuff, for me anyway.

I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve found myself reading up on minimalism and considering downsizing even more. While the idea of simplifying and living without clutter is wonderful, dare I say inspiring,  it’s definitely not something I can fully commit to. As a creative person, I always have totes upon totes of materials for various projects. My office is filled stacks of paper containing bits and pieces of stories and articles. I’ve got boxes of things that could possibly be repurposed. In short, my hobbies come with a lot of stuff.

 

decluttering, minimalism, half-assed

I don’t know about you, but his is WAY too sterile for me!

 

I am also a collector and a more than a little sentimental, which again means that even pairing down to the “essentials” just isn’t going to work for me. In fact, I’d argue that having tangible items that bring back certain memories or that simply make me smile is essential.

It is for these reasons that I have had to strike some sort of balance and develop my own sense of half-assed minimalism. Below are 4 essential lessons that have helped me keep the clutter to a minimum and create more space for the stuff that matters.

Ask yourself, does this get used?

I know, I know. This is like decluttering 101. Trust me, there’s a twist on this.

I want you to consider what that question means to you. For some people, random knick-knacks on a shelf may not be “getting used” and can be easily discarded, where as someone else may look at these items every day and smile. You probably have things you only use occasionally, like a specialized tool or holiday decor, that can be stored out of the way rather than tossed. On the flipside, you may have something that you use so infrequently that you’d rather ditch it and just borrow one from a friend as needed.

There are also the items that you have too many of, even if they all get used. Take dishes for example. At one point, we had so many plates that we could go weeks without doing dishes…and we often did. Of course, this meant when we finally ran out of clean plates we had a larger load to wash. It ate into our time, and it certainly didn’t make the kitchen look good. The were being used, but they weren’t particularly useful. Now, we can’t go more than two days without running out of plates, bowls, cups, or silverware. On top of keeping the cabinets clutter free, it forces us to stay on top of the dishes, which results in a cleaner kitchen and less stress.

Pay attention to what you actually use and how your possessions affect your life. Once you have an idea of what you truly want or need in your life you can start weeding out the things that aren’t a good fit.

Hold onto the right stuff.

So, now you’ve taken stock of your possessions and pinpointed some items that can be removed from your life. Good for you! Now, before you go all willy-nilly and just start pitching things, I want you to take a harder look at some of the stuff you may not “use” all the time but might want to keep.

Memories and collections:

Undoubtedly, there are items that you are holding onto just because they evoke strong memories. Lots of people are of the mind that the memories are in your head, so you don’t need most of it. I, however, disagree wholeheartedly. If you are someone who gets pleasure out of holding a treasured item from your past and reminiscing, embrace the fact that it’s part of who you are and keep what you need to keep. That said, see if you can pare it down a bit. Try some of these strategies:

  • Take pictures of items you don’t have space for, but don’t want to give up entirely. This is something I have done quite a bit. Whether it’s outfits I used to love but no longer wear, or giant stuffed animals I just don’t have room for, having those pictures in my scrapbook gives me something to look at and smile.
  • Hand items down to your kids. The borderline hoarder in me kept a ton of toys from my childhood. Like, several giant tubs full of old toys. Eventually I realized they weren’t doing much good sitting in storage, so I went through them and gave most of them to my daughter. Of course, I put a few things back that I didn’t want totally destroyed, and I finally parted with a lot of them, but seeing my child get enjoyment out of something I loved as a kid is pretty special.
  • See if you can repurpose some of your memorabilia. If you can’t find a way to display it as is and don’t want it rotting away in a box somewhere, why not find a new use for it? Old t-shirts can be made into quilts, handbags, and more. CDs and record albums that are no longer playable can be made into all sorts of cool things, including clocks or pieces of wall art. Get on Pinterest and see if you can breathe some new life into your old stuff!

Stuff for projects:

Remember those totes upon totes of project materials I mentioned? These get weeded out fairly regularly, and yet I manage to hold onto most of it, just in case. If you really think you may use it some day, keep it, but maybe give yourself a deadline to finish that project. Be honest with yourself about whether or not you’ll ever realistically do whatever you planned to do with each and every item.

This is especially important when it comes to broken things you plan on repairing. Consider the cost, not just financially but emotionally. Is it worth the time and effort? Will you use it once it’s fixed?

Stuff you know you’ll need later:

I got a lot of flack for holding onto all my daughter’s baby things. From bouncy chairs and toys, to bibs and clothes, I kept anything that wasn’t completely destroyed as she outgrew it all. I knew we wanted more kids, and I  knew that purchasing  all new stuff for future children would be expensive as hell. Of course, I also knew that if we were to have a boy next, I would have to replace a lot of clothing, but I decided to err on the side of caution. This worked out in my favor, as 5 years later I found myself pregnant with another girl. There is virtually nothing we have to buy for this child, and I have to tell you the feeling is amazing!

Clothes are another great example. I think the old “6 month” rule is obnoxious. I have a tasteful black skirt I only wear to funerals, but I don’t have a funeral to attend every 6 months (knock on wood). It makes no sense to get rid of it and have to buy a new one every time someone dies. I also have some nice  dresses that I maybe wear once a year, but I’m not about to toss them and buy a new dress every time I need one. There are also things of various sizes, as my weight tends to fluctuate.

It’s all about knowing yourself. If you know for a fact something will come in handy down the line and the thought of having to buy new stuff at some point makes you queasy, go ahead and stick it back. Again, use your judgement. Only you know how practical it is to keep onto things you use infrequently. The goal is to keep your home from looking like this:

 

half-assed minimalism

 

Schedule quarterly eliminations.

Those first two decluttering tips? Put them to use at the end of every season Stick it right in your planner or set a reminder in your phone. Go through everything you own and do a purge.

I know, this sounds like a daunting task, but hear me out.

This is something I have been doing for YEARS and the more you do it, the easier it becomes. In fact, you’ll probably find yourself creating mental lists of things you know you want to ship out with the next batch in between rounds.  This is made even easier by keeping an ongoing donation box, which I’ll discuss more in the next section.

This doesn’t have to be an obnoxiously time consuming task, because you know that anything that you didn’t catch this round will be picked up the next time. Just take a Saturday afternoon and glance through your drawers, shelves, and closets. Toss food and medicines that are expired, socks with no mates, anything that is broken beyond repair, and any other random junk you’ve accumulated. Pull out clothes you don’t wear, books you won’t reread and don’t care to display, and anything else that doesn’t currently fit your definition of the “right” stuff. If you’re switching out holiday decorations, weed through them as you go.  Chances are you’ll find things you fail to put out year after year, but hold on to just in case. Go ahead and let it go.

If you’re on the fence about something, wait until the next round. That’s the beauty of this system, it’s half-assed.

When you’re done, take all the unneeded junk and get it somewhere where it can help someone else. I don’t care if you do this by selling it, giving it to friends, or donating it to charity, just get it out of your house!

Get organized….and keep it that way.

Pictures go in frames, albums, or scrapbooks. Clothes go in the closet or dresser. Sounds simple right?  I mean, haven’t our mothers always gone on about having a place for everything and everything in it’s place? Turns out, she was onto something.  If you can’t find a place for it, you may need to reconsider its usefulness.

Keep an ongoing donation box for times when you run across something you spontaneously realize you don’t need.  For example, you’re getting ready for a night out and try on 5 shirts before deciding on an outfit. Chances are, at least one of those shirts has been tried on and discarded nearly every time you’ve pulled it out of the closet. You can probably go ahead and pitch it.

Need another example? How many times have you gone to open a drawer and gotten mad when it was jammed due to too much stuff? Dig through it and find the stuff that is doing nothing but taking up space and stick those right in the donation box. Do you really need 8 big plastic spoons?

Think before you shop.

Inevitably, you are going to find yourself in a situation where you need to acquire an item. Maybe your vacuum stopped working, or you ripped out your last good pair of pants. Maybe you went to hang up a picture and realized you don’t own a hammer.  Maybe you’ve been longing for a particular kitchen appliance and they’ve gone on sale. Whatever the reason, you are faced with the task of bringing something new into your home.

 

The best way to fight clutter is to prevent bringing it into your home in the first place.

 

Before you rush out and buy something, consider whether or not you really need it. Is it something you can borrow from someone else when needed? How long is this thing going to serve a purpose in your life? How much enjoyment are you going to get out of it? How often will it get used?

Next, consider whether or not it’s something you can buy used. There’s a ton of perfectly good stuff out there that’s going to waste, why not save some of it from a landfill? Plus, there are times when the quality of a used item is better than a new one. Which brings us to the next thing to consider: quality. Do your research and make sure you are getting something that will last. Why spend money on something you’ll have to replace later?

Finally, if possible look for multifunctional items. If you need a new bed, why not get one with built in drawers? Maybe the only other function of an item is looking good. Again, the idea of “usefulness” is in the eye of the beholder.

Keeping the clutter down doesn’t have to be a challenge. What it can be, however, is a great way to keep your stress-level down (a little self-care, anyone?) and an opportunity to take stock of the material things you are grateful for. It  can also be a worthwhile exercise in mindfulness.

I hope these tips make it a little easier for you to find the right amount of stuff for you. I would love to hear any tips you might have for keeping your stuff in check! Drop a line in the comments below and let us all know what works for you!

 

 

 

 

 

Celebrating Every Milestone

You guys, this is the 100th post I’ve written for this blog!

Ok, that’s a little bit of a lie. Because of the way I had things scheduled, this is actually post number 101. Tomato, tomahto.

I have to say, I was astounded when I realized how many posts I have written for this site, mainly because I’m always worried about running out of ideas. I mean, there’s only so many topics out there. However, there seems to be an infinite amount of ways to look at those topics and enough facets to each of them that I can come up with enough material, which is pretty cool.

I originally had something else planned for this spot, but I couldn’t bring myself to let this milestone pass without a little fan-fare.

 

celebrate small victories, milestones

 

I am a firm believer that we have to take a moment to celebrate each milestone we pass, even if it seems insignificant. It doesn’t have to be a big blow-out. Even a moment of quiet appreciation and recognition will do. What matters is recognizing our achievements so that we are motivated to keep working towards the larger goal. After all, success isn’t really about achieving one big moment; it’s a parade of small moments that add up to something great at the end.

This doesn’t apply only to our biggest goals and dreams, either. Anything we set out to do deserves the same amount of respect and acknowledgement. We absolutely have to be our own cheerleaders, especially for accomplishments that really only matter to us.

It’s so easy to let the small victories pass us by without a second thought. What’s one pound lost or one drawer decluttered? What’s one day of getting enough water? Heck, for those of us suffering from anxiety or depression, just getting out of bed in the morning can be a huge win, even though it seems like a given to others. Keeping your cool while your kids are acting like drunken monkeys? That’s definitely a win.

Think about all the small victories you achieve every day. I can guarantee you that you totally rocked it at something in the last 24 hours. Go ahead and congratulate yourself, you magnificent being!

 

celebrate milestone small victories quote

 

I recommend adding these mini-celebrations to your daily self-care routine. Not sure what you can do to mark these occasions? Here’s 15 ideas to get you started:

  1. Simply tell yourself, “good job!”
  2. Do a little happy dance.
  3. Have a piece of chocolate (or whatever your favorite treat is).
  4. Enjoy an adult beverage.
  5. Treat yourself to an at-home spa day with a long bath, facemask, and whatever else makes you feel pampered.
  6. Make your favorite meal.
  7. Reach over your shoulder and give yourself a pat on the back.
  8. Give yourself permission to do nothing for an hour.
  9. Rewatch a favorite movie.
  10. Allow yourself to take a nap. (Seriously, is napping not the ultimate reward?)
  11. Write about it in your journal..
  12. Call your mom or your best friend and brag a little.
  13. Buy yourself a small gift.
  14. Burn a candle and reflect on your progress.
  15. Say a prayer of gratitude that everything aligned just right and allowed you to do the thing.

Of course, you can always send yourself flowers, order a cake, or throw a huge party if you want, that’s on you. The idea is to keep the rewards proportional to the size of the achievement.

I’m sure you can come up with even more awesome ideas that aren’t on this list and I would love to hear them. Drop me a line in the comments below and let us know what your favorite rewards are or tell us about a recent win!

 

 

 

Building A Self-Care Routine: How I Pulled Myself Out A Rut

Self-improvement is kind of my jam.

From the time I hit about middle-school, I have voraciously read any self-help books I could get my hands on and even pursued 3 concurrent Bachelor’s Degrees in Psychology, Sociology, and Human Services. The frailties and possibilities of the human mind will never cease to amaze me.

As time went on, I found myself reading more and more about ways to further improve my life, and I imagine it’s a journey I will be on until I take my last breath.

Of course, every now and then, I find myself in a funk. No matter how good we have it, life will always throw us a few curveballs and provide opportunities to strengthen the skills we pick up along the way. If I’m being perfectly honest, the hormonal cocktail that has accompanied this pregnancy sparked one of those funks for me. Suddenly, I found myself questioning my goals and dealing with some issues that I had thought were already resolved.  After taking some time to wallow in the bog of bad feelings, I decided it was time to use this low-point as a reset button of sorts.

I quickly realized that the routine I had settled into was neither productive nor healthy. I had all but abandoned all of my self-care strategies and had pretty much stopped pursuing my goals. I was no longer living, just existing.

I decided to start pulling myself out of this rut by completely overhauling my routine, and I have to say, it has had an amazing impact. Before we dive into the particulars, I want to caution you against trying to follow anyone else’s routines to a “T”. We all have our own unique strengths as well as our own limitations, and our schedules and lifestyles are not identical. As such, it is much more practical to look at a wide variety of things that have worked for others and create your own plan based around what resonates most with you. This will likely take some trial and error, and there will be times you fall away from your intended plans. The important thing is to recognize the missteps and take action to correct them. Just keep on keepin’ on!

Identifying An Unhealthy Routine:

Before you can start making changes, you have to know what needs to be changed. This means taking a good long look at how you’re spending your time and energy and figuring out where the problems lie.

For me, it started with my mornings. I’d wake up at 5, make my husband’s coffee, then turn on the TV and park myself in front of whatever show I was currently binge-watching. I’d sit there, half-watching the tube, as I scrolled through Facebook or Twitter. I’d read a ton of articles and the subsequent comments, soaking in the arguments and formulating opinions. I’d wait forever to eat, constantly telling myself I’d get to it after I finished looking at this post…and then I’d click another link. Then my daughter would wake up and I’d realize that I’d wasted 3 or more hours and scramble to get in gear. Nothing was getting done, and it chipped at my confidence and left me agitated.

The rest of the day was spent trying to catch up and worrying about whether or not I would, in fact, catch up. Clearly, changing my morning routine was the first step.

 

insanity quote self care routine

 

Creating A Positive Start To The Day:

It should come as no surprise that how we start our day can affect its entire trajectory. If you start with stress, you’ll likely end with stress. Why not start with a positive outlook?

The first step I took was replacing the mindless TV watching with Ted Talks.  I know a lot of people prefer to start their mornings with quiet meditation, but that just didn’t work for me. However, listening to inspiring messages and learning something new before any negative self-talk could set in created a positive tone for the day.  I use this time to eat some breakfast as well.

Next, I scroll through Pinterest and look at inspirational quotes and positive messages while I let my brain wake up and my food digest. I follow this with looking over my running gratitude list and adding new items. Then I take a moment to look over the day’s to-do list and figure out how I want my day to flow.

With my intentions set for the day, I do a very simple workout (about 15 minutes) and hit the shower. This here is a big one: I use the shower time to focus on washing away negativity and starting the day with a clean slate. I then launch into some body-positivity exercises as I get ready for the day, which I will share in a future post.

By the time I’m dressed for the day, I’ve only spent an hour  or so preparing my mind and body for the day ahead, versus the 3+ hours I was spending on nothing before. From there, I get to work, which for me means sitting down to write. And the best part is? I’m actually motivated and happy to be doing it!

 

win the morning win the day positivity self care

 

Carrying That Feeling With You:

Over the course of the day, there are going to be moments that challenge the positive mindset you’ve created. One of the best tools I’ve found is taking a minute to focus on your senses and ground yourself in reality, and then making a conscious decision not to let whatever the stressor is get to you. Train yourself to correct negative thoughts by replacing them with positives. Pull up your mental gratitude list. Take a look at your Pinterest board full of positive quotes. Be firm in your intention to have a good day.

Another important aspect to carrying this positivity with you is to know your limits and avoid overbooking your day. This one has always been a bit of a challenge for me. It’s easy to overestimate what you can realistically do in a day, and even easier to drive yourself into burnout striving to achieve it all right now. Set smaller, more achievable goals and trust that the baby steps will lead you to desired results in due time. Think about what really needs to be done and don’t stress about what you can’t get to today.

 

don't stress, relax, all i can do is all i can do, rethink your schedule

 

Take breaks when you need to. Switch things up if you’re zoning out and not bringing your A game to a task. Find a way to make it enjoyable if it’s something you can’t avoid. Do what you have to do, but don’t let it drag you down!

Schedule time for fun:

Do something that is just for you every day.

EVERY DAY, GUYS!

I don’t care if it’s quietly eating a candy bar or blasting your favorite song in the car on your way home from work. Read a book at lunch, play a game on your phone while you wait for your potatoes to boil. Do something that makes you smile!

It’s easy to tell yourself you don’t have time, but 5 minutes is all it takes. If you can find more time, take it. Take a class, call a friend, play a game with your spouse, watch your favorite guilty pleasure movies, paint something even if you’re not good at it.  Play is so important!

You absolutely have to make your own pleasure a priority. No one else is going to do it for you, and feeling like you are living only to meet the needs of others will do nothing but make you feel drained and resentful. Life’s stressful enough without adding to it by denying the need for simple enjoyment.

End On A Positive Note:

I cannot stress this enough: set an end time for your day.

This is something I stumbled upon when my daughter was about 2 years old. I was working on something, be it housework or blog posts or a myriad of other projects, from the time I woke up until the time I forced myself to go to bed. I was constantly stressed and couldn’t figure out why. After all, I was making all sorts of progress, I should have been happy!

I decided then that after 7 o’clock I was done. No housework. No replying to emails. No work, period. I still adhere to this guideline, and it’s been a lifesaver.

I also make sure we have dinner as a family at the table every night. It’s a time for us to come together and discuss our day, and allows me to reflect on how grateful I am that we are all in this together. The rest of the evening is spent on hobbies or relaxing, sometimes together, sometimes separately. I try to keep my focus on enjoying our time and being more loving, forgiving, and understanding instead of letting the stress of the day affect my family. This requires some gentle reminders to myself, as we all faulter in these goals from time to time, and some days I miss the mark completely. It’s then that we have a chance to own our mistakes, apologize, and start over.

Before bed, I make my to-do list for the next day. I then take some time to reflect on the past 24 hours. I congratulate myself on the things I accomplished, even if it’s been a “bad” day and the only thing I did was get out of bed. I go over the highlight reel of the day in my head, looking for the tiny moments of joy as well as any big moments: my daughter said something cute, I heard this song, I ate this delicious thing, I survived the grocery store. I think about what I have to be grateful for and what I want to carry over to the next day. All in all, this takes about 10 minutes as I wait for sleep to come, but it makes a huge impact. If I fall asleep before I make it to that point, I simply move it to the morning.

 

evening routine self care

 

Accept “Bad” Days:

Sometimes life gets in the way and we don’t stick to our routines for one reason or another. When this happens we have two choices: we can feel bad, dwell on our “failure” and give up. or we can shrug it off and jump back in. You don’t even have to wait for tomorrow to start over, just start where you are as if you haven’t missed a step.

Of course doing all of these things every day is “ideal” but honestly, “most” days is good enough! Allow yourself some wiggle room. Plan for lazy days, sick days, fun days, or anything else that could throw you off and just keep rolling.

 

comeback after bad days, self care routine

 

Whatever you do, remember that this is a journey. Some of these tips may work for you, some may not. Just keep striving to be the best, healthiest you you can be and things will be fine.

Now it’s your turn. What do you do for self-care? What goes into building your routines? Tell us about it in the comments below!

 

 

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