Exquisite Self-care

Written March 27, 2021 by Julie Niall
Last updated March 27, 2021

"Rest and Self-Care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.”~ Eleanor Brown

A few weeks ago a wonderful friend of mine sent me to the spa. Okay...I exaggerate a little bit. It wasn't one of those swanky places I splurged on once or twice back in my 20s, surely having chosen the cheapest thing on the menu of services and overstaying my time in the complimentary steam room. Instead, this was a Zoom spa, in my home! It might sound like a poor substitute for the real thing, but actually the whole experience was charming. Ahead of time, the other participants and I received a bag of goodies in the mail - facial cleansers, moisturizers, under eye masks, special "wellness chews", tasty probiotic vitamin packs and superfood powder packs, and a delicious berry smoothie mix. Equipped with all our supplies, we were led through a skin care routine, directed in some breathing and relaxing body movements, and then treated to a final soothing guided meditation. Everyone was super kind, encouraging, and there wasn't any "sales pitch" from the provider. A powerful message came across loud and clear, one genuine voice after another: "Be good to yourself. Give yourself loving attention. We are here to remind you to commit to exquisite self care." There was much love and pampering, and grand sighs of contentment expressed through the screen that day!

Some of us at times think self-care is selfish or indulgent. Yet in our demanding and busy lives, even the basics of personal care seem to be pushed aside in our hectic schedules. I love nothing better than to spread love, give, serve others, and I believe that all my own self-care will overflow into even greater superb, beautiful care for all the people in my life, my loved ones and my clients! I may not be able to send you to the spa, but here is a brainstorm of 20 ideas for your own self-care...and maybe make that "exquisite" self-care:

  1. Decide self-care and self-love is a priority.
  2. Daily, commit time to prayer, reflection, quiet time, meditation and/or inspirational reading.
  3. Get moving with walking, yoga, tai-chi, dance, swimming, or a sport or other activity of your choice.
  4. Spend time in nature. And get some sunshine!
  5. Commit to eating well. Try reducing or abolishing sugar, fast-food, and processed foods.
  6. Get more sleep.
  7. Bring attention to your relationships, family and community. Love and be loved. If you live on your own, reach out to others by phone or write an old-fashioned letter.
  8. Take time to create: cook, garden, paint, sing, knit, start that novel you always wanted to write, sew, draw...
  9. Make daily "chores" a part of your routine. Keep your living space clean and orderly. Decorate or beautify your home - sometimes all it takes is one flower in a vase or the opening of window coverings to let the light in.
  10. Eliminate or seek help in reducing or dealing with harmful addictions, habits or stressors.
  11. Think positive; try to minimize pessimistic thinking.
  12. Forgive others and by all means forgive yourself.
  13. Laugh and play. Tell a joke every day. Here's one: What flower are you always wearing?*
  14. Focus on others. Do a kind deed everyday. A smile or simple phone call could make someone's day and it will absolutely make you feel happier too.
  15. If your basic needs are unmet, seek support to explore solutions.
  16. Create a nurturing environment for yourself. Books, plants, music, artwork, pets, candles, inspiring quotes or pampering skin & health products might be some ways to promote peace or well-being. Don't forget how this all got started...you can plan your own spa day...a pampering facial, dye your hair, have a foot bath...
  17. Reduce your screen time. Choose another hobby to explore or read a great book!
  18. Choose someone you can talk or confide in.
  19. Find something you believe in, something that is bigger than yourself.
  20. Plan a vacation. If funds or a pandemic get in the way, plan a local adventure or day of joy.

What exquisite self-care can you nurture yourself with today?

What one item, listed above, will you focus on this week?

* The answer to the joke is tulips. Get it?

"Love yourself even more than you think you deserve." - Cheri Huber

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