As women it seems to be ingrained in us to put everyone else first. We are wife, mum, cleaner, councillor, work colleague etc etc. We tend to feel guilty if we even think about putting ourself first. Don't get me wrong, things have to get done, I get that. The kids need feeding, the house needs cleaning, and the clothes need ironing. And somebody has to do it right? But, that does NOT mean that we should neglect our own needs.
Think about it like this. If we don't look after ourselves then we are no good to anyone else. I should give a disclaimer here. I am in a position where most of my time is my own. My son is grown up and is 22 and whilst he is living at home again, he is very self sufficient and doesn't need me to do much. And my husband is very twenty first century and does the washing, ironing, cooking and cleaning without ever being asked. I own my own business so I am answerable to know one except myself, I am my own boss and I make my own rules. But I still make a point of practising a little self care very single day.
Self care is a big buzzword these days. You'll see post after post on Instagram promoting #selfcare #selflove etc. I am all for it. Self care does not have to cost any money (although it can if you want). Self care can be the simple act of eating nourishing food and getting enough sleep.
Here are five simple and free ways to practice a little self care. Set yourself a goal and aim to do one thing a day just for yourself. You will feel so much better for it and others round you will benefit.
1 - Sleep. Everyone is different in the optimal amount of sleep the body needs, but most of us are the same in that we don't get enough. Getting a good nights sleep can make you feel like a new women. Go to bed a little earlier tonight. I keep a diffuser by my bed and every night I have it going with a few drops of my favourite essential oils that have sleep benefits. The diffuser I have lasts four hours and I use Vetiver, Lavender and Cerdearwood (Doterra).
2 - Sunshine boosts levels of seratonin in the body and seratonin is the body's natural happy hormone. You don't need much to get a boost, just 10-15 minutes a day. If you are out any longer than this then please make sure you protect your skin from harmful rays with a sunscreen (a natural brand preferably so you aren't absorbing harmful toxins into your skin).
3 - Water therapy. For me being near water makes me feel calm and happy. It can either be the ocean or the river. I love a walk along the beach.
4 - Nourish. When we are busy its all to easy to grab some fast food, or just a coffee and call it a meal. Our body's need to be fueled with nourishing foods to make us function properly. Give yourself some time out to make a decent lunch and sit down to eat it with no interruptions. Take time to enjoy the food you are eating.
5 - Avoid Negativity. This is something I have only been doing in the last year. I try where I can to remove myself from any form of negativity. Its draining. Some people only seem to be happy when they are moaning, gossiping, bitching or whinging. Don't get dragged down. Walk away. Don't engage. If you get drawn in you'll take on that negativity. Don't be that person. Its ugly. Start by looking through all the Facebook groups you are in. How many of them are full of people doing nothing but moaning? Leave the group. Delete yourself. There are so many groups that are positive and full of good people. It just takes a little time to find them. Ask friends what groups they are in and see if these fit your needs better.
These are just a few ideas. I will be doing a part 2 to share some more self care ideas with you. Until then, look after yourself.