Self care is an essential part of our wellbeing. How we eat to fuel our bodies, move around, treat ourselves and how often we relax are the building blocks of a healthy body and mind.
Whether you have just a few minutes a day, or a few hours a week, do take that time to nourish and focus on yourself.
Here are some of our favourite self-care tips and activities – many of which have been suggested by our customers over the years – and every single one will have you feeling great.
With time of the essence, it is important to make sure that all opportunities for a moment of self nurturing are taken and made the most of.
In the morning, take a few deep ‘belly’ breaths on waking, lie on your back and breath in gently to the count of 5 seconds, hold for 6, then breath out for 7. With each breath feel your belly expand, then deflate. Repeat 4 or 5 times. Just taking in the new day gently will ready you for what lies ahead.
A nourishing herbal tea gives you a few minutes of calm. Enjoy the ritual of brewing and cooling the tea, add some lemon and honey to taste. Close your eyes and sip, taking in the flavours and scents of the blend.
A quick shower can offer a rare moment of privacy, instead of a quick shampoo and wash, take a few moments to massage your scalp with your shampoo, feel the cascade of water on your body, slather hair conditioner and your favourite body wash on and try to clear your mind of everything outside the bathroom door. Kids, drama, work and household chores can all wait. Make this time count towards energising yourself for the day ahead.
At the end of the day, applying your favourite body cream to your feet will give you a moment to ‘ground’ yourself. Forget about the days dramas, just massage your heels and ankles, this will soften your skin and give your feet some much needed TLC after a day in shoes.
A mini facial can do wonders to make your skin feel radiant. Start with a gentle cleanse, followed by a simple scrub or exfoliator (such as the Apricot Scrubble by Jason, or a homemade one with your cleaner, sugar and honey). After rinsing, apply a clay mask or hydrating lotion and leave on the skin for 5 minutes, then rinse away.
If you can escape completely, follow a guided meditation to switch off for ten minutes. We have some here you can use.
Go outside – fresh air will do wonders for concentration and will freshen you up no end. If you are at a desk, or at home indoors, or in any crowded or public space take ten minutes away from there and be as close to nature as possible. Walk on grass barefoot, or sit on a bench and overlook parkland, walk near flowers and enjoy the fragrance and colours. Nature nurtures.
Cuddle a pet. Dogs, cats, lizards, parrots – they all offer unending loyalty and love (OK, maybe not cats as much) but they all do love attention! Spend some time cuddling, playing, talking with, holding…whatever fits their personality best!
Read an article or a chapter of a book. A break in concentration from the norm can offer a great way to refresh and awaken the mind. If your day is spent working on spreadsheets, or laundry or home schooling, pick up a book or a magazine. Read something different for ten minutes. You will feel refreshed when you go back to the task in hand.
Move around, try jumping, skipping, stretching or running on the sot for ten minutes. This will get your heart beating faster, your blood pumping through your veins and will result in a feeling of GO GET ‘EM!!
A half hour break in your day can offer plenty of scope for self care. How about a mini manicure? Soak your hands in warm water and exfoliate with your favourite scrub. Apply a generous helping of hand cream and massage into your fingers, palms, back of hands and wrists. Gently push your cuticles back and shape your nails with a file. Apply a thin layer of varnish, allow to dry for a few minutes then apply a second. We love Organii hand cream (£2.99) and Benecos Natural Nail Polish (£4.95).
Whip up a beautifully blended smoothie or juice using colourful veggies, revitalising ginger and lemon. This will energise you and you can be creative with different flavours.
Go for a walk and take your camera. A lovely way to take in new things is to go out armed with your camera or smartphone with the intention of getting a great photo. It could be of a bumblebee on a flower, or a stunning architectural design. Focusing on this activity will free up your mind of your usual activities.
A run or jog will get your heart pumping harder and work your mind as well as your body. If you prefer not to run, try a slightly faster walk than you usually would to get a little more out of breath.
With plenty of time to prepare and enjoy – 60 minutes allows for such wonderful self care. Consider a real treat, such as a professional massage or facial at a salon. Maybe have your hair done or arrange to spend time with a friend catching up. Whatsapp, Facebook, Insta and all the other social platforms are great tools for keeping in touch with people, but nothing really beats a good chat on the phone or in person.
I love to declutter! Spending 30-40 minutes sorting out my airing cupboard, or the drawer in the kitchen is real escapism for me and the final result of an ordered, clean and tidy space is such a great reward. This can be used in a much broader sense too, our emotional wellbeing and mental health is massively impacted by our surroundings and what we see on a daily basis. If your first sight in the morning is a huge pile of laundry, or a disorganised wardrobe of clothes that don’t fit it will have a negative impact on the day ahead and how you feel. Seeing tidy clear spaces keeps a tidy mind and makes navigating your days activities much easier.
Prefer some alone time? How about putting on your favourite music? You can dance, sing, exercise or simply sit quietly and enjoy the sounds. Let the music fill your head and don’t be distracted by social media, the news, other dramas unfolding around you. This is your time.
An epsom salt bath relax tired muscles, and bath time provides the perfect chance to unwind at the end of the day. Start with a body brush, starting at the feet and move upwards towards your heart with gentle brushing, this brings the blood to the surface of your skin and reinvigorates it. Enjoy a warm, not hot, bath and follow with moisturising from top to toe with your favourite bodycare products. Try to avoid any blue screen or tv (phones, tablets, devices etc) and finish your evening with reading a book or enjoying a herbal tea like chamomile or Pukka Night Time.