Wow! Can you believe how quickly this year has flown by? The countdown towards Christmas is on and the New Year is closing in fast. Around this time of year, things can get a little bit crazy. So why not use this calendar month to practice the art of slowing down and getting into the moment? Maybe take a bit of time to reflect on the year that was and don’t forget to give yourself an extra pat on the back for all of your efforts.
Hey, you survived the crazy year that was 2016 and now it’s time to reward yourself in ways that show you truly love yourself from within.
Read my Guide to Love and Self-Care in the Silly Season (now try saying that five times fast)!
I encourage you to try at least one of my tips weekly and see how sparklingly good you feel afterwards. And don’t worry these are achievable tips and they all come with pleasant side effects.
- Schedule in much-needed me time. Create time in your schedule just to be by yourself. I start my day with a walk, just me – no phone, no friends and no work! I encourage you to step out and take a break from emails, from family or housemates, and from a chaotic schedule and just enjoy alone time with yourself. Walk in nature or through a park and totally disconnect from the craziness of traffic and your usual surroundings. After a walk, I always find that I start the day on a more positive note, feeling refreshed and ready to take on whatever is coming my way. And if you’re not yet convinced, morning walks are the best way to tone up, reach your daily step-count and get your body moving first thing in the morning.
- Switch off from your phone. Trust me, I’m someone who’s phone and screen time is a huge part of how I stay connected and I know how hard this can be for most people. But as the old saying goes, “you need to disconnect to reconnect.” Remember to switch off from your phone when you’re with your loved ones and just be present in the moment with them. Phone down, eyes up, ears open! If you’re spending time with the family or friends having lunch or dinner, bring out their competitive and frugal side by putting your phone face-down on the table and whoever touches their phone first must pay for the meal. A little bit of incentive can go a long way in the silly season.
- Stop scrolling your social media feeds. Sometimes we get so bogged down by scrolling through instagram; we don’t even realise how long we’ve been scrolling or stalking others and hours can slip by unnoticed J. One of my favourite quotes is “comparison is the thief of all joy” and this is something that can be a huge driver in social media usage. During the holidays, let go of the comparison trap and forget likening what you’re actually doing or documenting to what you currently see on your feed. Perhaps you feel less inspired or more negative after a quick social media scroll, if this happens, notice this feeling and harness it so you can slowly cut down on your social media usage. Filter out who you follow and remind yourself that there’s a whole different world behind an image. Sometimes what you see is not all it appears, so pop the phone away and enjoy genuine connections with others. If you feel yourself asking “Why can’t I be like”… or “where did I go wrong?” Think about ways you can align your reality and turn those thoughts into ones of self-love and care. You may be surprised at the results.
- Go off the beaten path. Start a new conversation in a different environment. This can help to highlight different aspects of yourself and the world. It could be a conversation with your partner/sibling/friend/kids/or someone new. Think about something that you’ve never talked about before and start a conversation about it. It’s a great way to engage, tune in and bond over giggles, trembles or tears. I’m giving you permission to put that vocabulary to good use and just have some time to see where it leads! These holidays, be open to new possibilities and perspectives, and step outside your comfort zone.
- Spontaneity. Now, I know the word spontaneous can seem scary or awkward to some, but occasionally it’s fun to do something completely out of the ordinary! You can start off by taking small steps and go as far as you like. Even just cooking something a bit different for dinner, like ‘My Supercharged Poke Bowl’ or going somewhere you’ve never been before in your local area! Breaking out of your usual routine can be challenging for some but it’s always so worth it for the new experiences you gain.
- Sunshine – With the current summer feeling floating in the air, make a plan to get down to the beach (if you live near one) or got to a lake or park, tear off your shoes, sink your toes into the sand or earth and enjoy the sunshine. Show yourself some love by soaking up some Vitamin D rays and getting into the water. Vitamin D and ocean water is just as good for your skin as it is for your soul.
- Skin care. Speaking of skincare, why not treat yourself with a special gift. My natural earth mask & scrub can be used as a scrub or weekend facemask. Just apply the mask, run a bath, light your favourite candle, and soak up me time, even if it’s just ten minutes whilst the mask dries, those ten minutes will make a HUGE difference to how you feel inside and out. Voila! Self-care Saturday or Sunday has begun. By the way, stress is the number one killer of beautiful skin – whether it’s acne or wrinkles, set don’t forget to aside some time to look after yourself and your skin.
What self-care practices will you be doing over the holidays? Let me know in the comments section below.