T.L.C. for You And Me
Trying to juggle more and more responsibility in our insanely busy lives, we all have felt overwhelmed and stressed out at one time or another. For many of us, there are just not enough hours in the day to do everything we want to do. From the hustle and bustle of the recent autumn and winter holidays to just another Monday, it’s imperative for all of us to decompress from the daily stresses of life.
Now, I know time is a constraint for all of us, but I firmly believe that taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of others. So, what are some options you have to help you feel you’re at your best? Never fear, friends! If you’ve got thirty minutes to spare, you’ve got a self-care plan!
Take a Walk
Throughout New England, and especially here in Massachusetts, we are known for our unpredictable weather, but that doesn’t deter us from getting back to nature. Whether you are deep in the country or surrounded by high rises, getting fresh air for a few minutes will invigorate the senses, so take that stroll!
Breathe In, Breathe Out
Meditation is great for clearing the mind of any racing thoughts and allows you to place focus on your breathing to achieve calmness. Don’t feel like you can spare a large chunk of your day? Five minutes is a great length of time to start with, and you can gradually build up to your desired duration. You can find plenty of wonderful guided meditations on YouTube. Many have soothing music, chants, mantras, and affirmations.
Eating something that brings back great memories sends signals to your brain that give you a feeling of safety, warmth, and happiness. Indulging in classic fares like stuffed peppers, chicken soup, mashed potatoes, chocolate chip cookies, ice cream, burritos, turkey and stuffing, and macaroni and cheese is like having a blanket wrapped around your heart. Why do you think it’s called comfort food?
Grab a Cuppa
There’s something about tea that brings me back to a time where life was simpler, where everyone just stopped for a moment. Formal tea time could either be social or solitary, chatty or serene, but the point was to put pressing matters on hold for a little while and enjoy the brief respite. What better reason to break out your fanciest cups and saucers, slice up that cake, and brew that pot of Earl Grey!
This practice began in European hospitals and, in the last 20 or so years, has been embraced by the holistic community and the public as a whole. Harvested from plants, flowers, and trees, essential oils can be used to calm, energize, or center. There are several different ways to work with them, including in a bath or a diffuser. My personal favorite method is to combine my choices in a carrier oil blend, rub into my palms and inhale. Please make sure to thoroughly research the properties of whatever oil you are considering, as many should not be used by pregnant women, those with certain medical conditions, or taking certain medications. Aromatherapy should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care, and always consult a medical professional if you have any questions or concerns.
Tell Me a Story
Pick up a book, flip through a magazine, or watch a classic film! Put your phone to the side and get lost in tales of action, romance, drama, and comedy. Immersing yourself in a different country or era not only gives you a plethora of perspectives and styles, but it gives you a window into a world you may never experience. Sometimes we all need to go somewhere else!
Give yourself the freedom to take personal time as much as possible. Your heart, mind, and soul will thank you for it.
BIO: Katy Kostakis’ loquacious nature and