Honoring Self-Love: Four Self-Care Practices to Try Today

Here are 4 self-care practices to try at home

Self-care is much more than bubble baths and pedicures. Taking time to tap into your own inner wisdom and self-development is a profound act of self-love also!

As I get older (and hopefully wiser), I’ve begun to realize that truly taking care of myself is uncomfortable and inconvenient. Self-care practices don’t necessarily come naturally.

Let me explain.

Soaking in a lavender-scented bathtub is an amazing refuge, but when the bathwater drains and tiny hands open the bathroom door to greet me, this zen experience quickly fades away. I’m left with me. My actions. My choices and my beliefs. My true self is there waiting for me if I will let her in. This true self craves compassion and growth, against my ego’s best desires. If I show up to do the work (the uncomfortable and inconvenient part), this zen lasts much longer and I am living aligned with my beliefs (which a happier mama makes).

While I am all for rose petals and savoring cups of tea, I invite you to dive into a few new self-love practices too.

Four Self-Care Practices To Try

1) Challenge your Limiting Beliefs

This practice has been a game-changer for me and is especially helpful when my mind starts running wild with stories. Warning: It can be uncomfortable to complete this process. Sit with the discomfort; it’s worth it!

To Practice:

Fold a sheet of paper in half longways to divide it. Title one side of your paper, “Limiting Beliefs” and the other side of the paper “Reality.”

Set a timer for 5 minutes and jot down as many limiting beliefs as you can think of. Examples could be:

” I don’t have time for this activity.” 

” I am not a creative person.”

” I have to do {fill in the blank here}”

” I am not flexible enough for yoga.”

Now, take the time to reflect on each statement you have written down. Write down a truth next to your limiting belief. Challenge yourself here! It helps to write down what your response would be to a friend who shared this limiting belief with you. For instance, instead of “I am not a creative person,” you could write, “I would like more time to tap into my creativity.” Instead of telling ourselves that we have to do something, what if we were honest instead? The truth is our have-to’s are often “I want-to’s, or I feel compelled-to’s.” Once we realize this, the possibilities for how we can arrange our day (and life) are endless.

Related: Ask the Expert: Why is Tea Time Important for Self Care?

2. Clear your Mind with a Candle Gaze Meditation 

Monkey mind gets the best of us most days, and it can be a nice retreat to clear out our thoughts. This particular practice offers soothing eye relief after hours of screen time. Invite your children to join you or find time to practice after they head to bed.

To practice:

  • Place a candle flame at eye level in a dark room.
  • Prepare yourself a comfortable seat so your hips are at ease (consider sitting on a pillow or bolster).
  • Gaze at the flame for 30-60 seconds. Set an intention to keep your focus on the flame. Let your worries and “to-do’s” slip away.
  • After your time is up, close your eyes and focus on the after-image of the flame.
  • As the after-image fades, open your eyes and repeat the process again.
  • Practice several rounds.
  • After your final round, take a moment to turn within and identify what thoughts and emotions have popped up for you.

Related: Indecisive? Consider Reflecting on your Core Values

3. Write a few Morning Pages

I learned about morning pages from my friend Alisha Wielfaert of Yoke and Abundance. She shares the practice of journaling each morning, immediately upon waking.  Alisha encourages folks not to censor what they are writing and to avoid the temptation to go back and read the pages for the first 4-6 weeks of the practice. Peaceful writing time can be tricky to navigate as a parent with children who awake early, but I have found that setting my alarm a few minutes earlier helps.

To practice:

  • Keep a journal and a pen at your bedside.
  • Once you wake up, begin to write. Write without an objective. Alisha says “write the thing you can’t think to say out loud.” You may choose to jot down a dream, words of gratitude, or your intentions for the days and months ahead. Consider asking yourself questions as you write, and as the words unfold, you may just find you receive some answers!

4. Set a Date to Learn Something New

Write down (or mentally note) 2-3 topics you would like to learn more about. Once you have a few ideas, do some research. Locate classes, webinars, seminars, workshops, meet-up groups and more that relate to the topics you have chosen. Without hesitation, make a commitment to go to or sign up for one of these offerings. If you feel that you cannot, see activity number one! This may seem inconvenient; after all, it is yet another obligation. I promise the outcome and renewed inspiration you will receive are well worth it.

 

Photo: WAYHOME studio/Shutterstock


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *