From my point-of-view self-care is the invitation to take responsibility for our own health and happiness.
Knowing that we can influence the way we feel physically, mentally, emotionally and energetically via our daily choices. The natural way to help ourselves. Self-care encompasses everything from meditation, yoga and walking barefoot on the earth; to balancing our diet with organic whole foods such as fruits, nuts, vegetables and herbs; to utilising the benefits of organic essential oils and personal care products that support the body; to feeding our creativity and passions. It does not mean being dogmatic in relation to placing ‘labels’ on ourselves, or adhering to strict practices, as when we practice self-care, we know that everything is connected, so the rigidity and dogmatism can do more harm to the body, mind and being, rather than enjoying something such as a sleep in, forgoing our exercise practice for the day, or enjoying a glass of wine. Perhaps those desired actions were there to bring ease and peace to our state of mind. Let’s not judge ourselves. Let’s embrace our imperfectly perfect nature and care for ourselves whole-istically, knowing that the most important relationship we have is the one we have with ourself, and where all others spring from. If we can’t care for ourselves, how can we possibly expect to care for another?
One simple, yet effective way that I love to start the day and gift my body and mind a little self-care is to take 2 minutes before my shower for dry skin body brushing and 2 minutes after my shower to massage organic plant extracts into my skin whilst practising positive self-talk.
Dry skin brushing stimulates circulation, increases cell renewal, tightens skin and improves texture, helps in the treatment of cellulite, cleans the lymphatic system and strengthens the immune system, removes dead skin layers and stimulates glands, thus helping all your body systems to perform more efficiently. All that from just a few minutes each morning. Amazing huh!
Some tips to remember… buy a natural (not synthetic) bristle brush; choose one with a long handle so that you can reach all areas of your body; skin brush before showering in the morning; do not wet your skin or the brush; always brush towards the heart in long, smooth strokes; start with the soles of your feet first, then the ankles, calves, thighs, stomach and buttocks and then your back, hands and arms. (Take care and do lighter strokes around your chest. Do not brush your face or other sensitive or irritated areas); and finally… follow with a shower.
BODY, MIND AND SOUL LOVING OILS
Each morning when I am out of the shower I apply a light layer of hydration to help keep my skin feeling silky soft and to avoid that frightening crocodile look.
One of my favourite body lotions is the AEOS Beauty Body Lotion in Harmonising. It has a nifty little swivel top application and just the right size to fit in my handbag or gym bag for touch-ups to legs and hands that cry out for a little moisture during the day. It’s packed full of luxurious organic and biodynamic ingredients such spelt oil, jojoba oil, argan oil, calendula oil, rose oil, lemon myrtle oil, ylang-ylang oil and the essences of amethyst, sapphire and emerald crystals to benefit the body, mind and soul. Heaven in a bottle! Oh, and did I mention that it is the perfect lotion to apply before getting dressed, as it sinks in and doesn’t stick to my clothes.
INTEGRATING SELF-LOVE TO THE RITUAL
Do you judge, criticise and compare your body? If so, please stop abusing the vessel that is providing you with the ability to live an enjoyable active life. Be kind to your body.
Be grateful for the body that you have. Turn those negative thoughts and words 180 degrees and start to show your body some love. As you work your way up from the soles of your feet, to the back of your neck, whether that be whilst body brushing or applying a body lotion, be grateful for every part of your body and practice “positive self talk” by thanking your body for all that it is and for all that it has the potential to be.
I invite you to join me this month with the morning self-love ritual of body brushing followed by full body moisturising to help improve the relationship that you have with yourself so that you can get out and enjoy the day ahead.