There’s a crazy thing that happens when you start indulging in what the kids call “self-care”... the one act has a sort of butterfly effect on your life. For example, when I switched from cigarettes to vaping, I ended up cutting the house cleaning in half (no more smoking in the house meant all the surfaces weren’t covered in ash, not to mention all of the linens and upholstery, and the smoke clinging to the windows).
It was an unintended consequence of the best kind.
It’s taken me a couple of years, but suddenly, here I am having that same realization. Recently, I’ve indulged in a bit of self-care and more wonderful unintended consequences. Nothing quite so drastic as cutting chore time in half, but enough to feel like a positive influence in my life. Which brings us all here, to this point.
Why am I writing this? To challenge you to take some time for yourself today, and every day. And to share some of my favorite ways to get my self-care on. As with any indulgence, engage in moderation.
I think there’s a misconception that you need a lot of money or a lot of time. You don’t. And if you’re here, reading this, you can probably figure out a way to carve yourself out an hour a week.
Here are just a few ways that you can indulge in some self-care, without going broke or running late:
1 Take a bath and a bowl
For my ideal bath, there are a few essentials: good tunes, a freshly packed bowl, delicious smelling suds, and something moisturizing so my skin feels like silk when I’m through. But if I'm really doing it up, there’s incense or some aromatherapy bullshit candles. It might feel a little too romantic for a solo bath but I deserve it. And honestly, my tub isn’t big enough for two.
Go for a long walk or run. Do some yoga. Hit the gym. It’s good for your heart and since you’re sweatier, you’re drinking more water which is great for your skin.
3 Treat Your Skin
Face masking is a quick and relatively inexpensive way to care for yourself. And sheet masks are even better since there’s minimal washing afterward. You’ll feel good and your skin will glow too!
4 Meal Prep
This kind of sounds like a chore. It always did to me. Until I actually prepped my lunches in advance one week.
“Holy shit, why didn’t I do this sooner?” I said on day 3, to my officemate/husband. I don’t think he cared that much but he did muster up his best, “That’s awesome!”
Why am I considering this “self-care”? Well, it saved me time, there is not much of a time difference between making one salad and five at once. Prepping my lunches in advance also saves me from making a poor choice because I’m being lazy. Hard to justify making something else if the salad is there and ready on a lazy day.
5 Close your eyes and just breath for a minute
Just take a few minutes to sit down, shut your eyes and take some good deep breaths. Throw a blanket down in the grass outside of your office. Clear your mind and just breath. It will refresh you (maybe not as much as another cup of coffee, excuse me a minute). And give you just enough peace to tackle the rest of the shitshow you call your daily life.
6 Tell someone to shut the fuck up already
In a nice way though. “Hey honey, I would love to listen to your story but right now I just need you to be quiet.” If they need a reason, just say, “headache.”
7 Spend some money on yourself
Within whatever budgetary limitations you live with, you should set aside a little splurge money. Maybe that’s $30 to blow at the thrift store or in the beauty section of your local drug store; maybe that’s buying a new seasonal wardrobe; perhaps it’s buying some weird pizza themed merchandise. You should treat yourself once in awhile, in any way you can.
The Self-Care Challenge
Now, I'd like to challenge you to try to incorporate just one of these into your life this month. Then come back to tell me how it goes.