Five Self Care Rituals To Bring Balance in the New Year
A new year has arrived, and with that comes the pressure of change, goal setting, and hustling hard to make this year 'the best one yet.' Everything around us is filled with suggestions of how we can change, that often times we end up in a cloud of stress and burn out that happens very quickly.
While setting intentions for a new year is always a great thing to do (I encourage this a lot, actually) it is also important that we focus on self care and rest so that we can maintain the energy we need to reach our highest potential for the next 365 days.
I'd like to share some self care rituals with you that have helped me during this time, and are things I go back to all the time when I need a reset.
1) Daily Tea Meditation - This small but mighty ritual is something that can create big results, and the time it takes to do it is minimal. It's as simple as pouring yourself a cup of tea, and drinking it without distraction. There is something so beautiful about pouring water into a kettle, listening to it as it boils, watching the steam float up as you pour the hot water into a cup, and sitting for a moment to allow your tea steep. Notice the quiet reflection that comes as you sit and feel the warmth of each sip, flowing through your chest and into your stomach, and imagine the beautiful healing you will get from this stress free moment. Take it all in, and then start or continue your day. Whether this is a 10 min ritual, or a 30 min break, you will feel the results.
2) Weekly Hair Ritual - This is something that I learned from two incredibly wonderful women who provide great information on this practice: Roxie Jane Hunt from How To Hair Girl and Stefani Padilla of La Tierra Sagrada. On Sunday nights I like to put La Tierra Sagrada Hair Medicine in my hair and brush it through using Roxie's incredible hair brush. As I brush my hair and massage my head, I imagine the stress being taken away, and I feel that I am giving great care to such an important part of my body: my head! Follow both of them on social and check out their sites for more specific details on how to do hair rituals.
3) Weekly Epsom Salt Baths - I am a water baby, and there is nothing I find more relaxing than being in a warm tub of water sprinkled with epsom salt. Perhaps it's because I am a fire symbol (Aries) but there is something about being surrounded by this purifying element that takes years of stress out of my body each time I do it. If you do not have a bath tub available, a nice long warm shower will do.
4) Weekly Full Body Exfoliation - Here is something that every single person on the planet should do at least once a week. A full body exfoliation. Korean Spas are my favorite place when I want to indulge (oh I wish I could go there weekly for a treatment!) but this is something that can also be done at home, either in the shower or the tub. The gloves they use at these locations are what makes it extra special, and luckily for all of us, you can purchase them online. Make sure your skin is extra soft, whether that is from a hot shower or a hot bath, and start scrubbing! With every stroke, imagine that you are scrubbing away stress, bad energy, sadness, anything you need to release, and then bask in the glory that is soft renewed skin afterwards. I find that I hold a lot of anxiety and insecurity in my chest, so I focus on that area each week.
5) Daily Art Meditation - While art has been a part of my life since I was child, I never thought about it as a meditation until I learned about it at Spirit Weavers Gathering. Since then, I keep a journal with me and a portable set of water colors (brush included). I try and find time each day to sit down and use my water colors, even if it's just for 15 minutes to free my mind of computers, too much stimulation, and give it rest as each stroke hits the paper. And obviously, each time I am in my indigo vat, I am in deep meditation. For this I am lucky.
I hope you will try out some of these rituals, if you haven't already done it, and you find some peace in a very chaotic world.
Happy New Year, and remember that self care is not selfish. It is vital and you deserve it. Stop down, enjoy, and reset each day.