Love Yourself Inside & Out
It sounds simple enough: look after your mental and physical health; do more of what you love and maximise your ‘me-time’... The question is how do you fit self-care into your life? The days are short enough as it is!
We’ve spent some time pondering self-care and how to achieve it and these are our tips for a happy, healthy year ahead.
Reduce the amount of time you spend on your phone Our bodies are on a relentless high alert from the millions of stimuli we are exposed to. With apps, email and social media all at the tips of our fingers, we’re constantly distracted by the mobile world. It’s a worthwhile exercise to think about your phone use and to try and bring in some discipline. Perhaps scheduling your social media so that you look at it for an hour just once a day is a possibility? Turning off alerts or removing some apps from your phone can also help. Maybe you check the time on your phone? then find yourself sucked into looking at other things? so get a watch!
It may seem contradictory but If you’re someone who gets easily distracted there are a range of apps available that can help you to manage your screen time. Check out Moment, App Detox and Flipd. We like Forest which involves planting virtual trees that will only grow if you don’t touch your phone. You can set the timer for anything up to 2 hours, you then put your phone down and get on with something important, all the while a beautiful green space is growing. It’s a bit Black Mirror, but does actually help if you’re finding it difficult to focus.
Thinking about what you look at and ensuring that it has a life enhancing or inspirational quality is also a good idea. The experts advise a social media cleanse, whereby you unfollow all the accounts on your feed that don’t make you feel good.
If you monitor your habits for a day and make some changes you could easily win yourself back some valuable time.
Learn to say no or JOMO - the "Joy of missing out" (as opposed to the fear of missing out = FOMO) You simply can’t do everything. If there’s a life drawing class going on that you really want to get to; make that your priority for the week. Don’t get pressured into attending things with friends that you won’t really get anything out of. Say no and do something you need to do, even if it's just relaxing in the bath. It does sound selfish but if we aren't careful we end up tired, frustrated and not much fun to be with. Ruby Wax wrote last week in the Guardian about why being kinder to ourselves is good for society. She said “Somehow the idea of self-compassion has become tarnished as selfishness. However, to show yourself compassion is far from selfish because, if you can, you won’t drain other people by expecting them to make you feel good…. Learning to throw yourself a bone of self-compassion increases your resilience and stability"
Create a dedicated Meditation Space. At first this might seem like another thing to add to your to-do list, but if you do it properly it can actually help you to feel more in control of your time. It’s only by taking time out, even just for five minutes, that we can begin to access a more telescopic view of our life. By creating a Meditation Space in your home you are making an area in which you can practise stillness and give yourself permission to relax. It doesn’t even have to be a very big space, a corner of your bedroom will do. All you need is a comfy cushion to sit on, maybe a candle or a plant, the less cluttered the better. Empty your mind, breathe deeply and make sure your feet are grounded firmly on the floor.
Sarah Rudell Beach of Left Brain Buddha says “We often define rooms in our homes by what we do in them – dining, living, cooking – or the objects we use in them – beds, TVs, baths. Do we have spaces in our homes to just be?"
Start the day right Get into the habit of beginning each day by gently waking up the digestive system and you will feel the benefits all day long. Nutritionist (and friend of Salt-Water Europe) Elisabeth Carlsson, of Honor Oak Wellness Rooms suggests you “Start each morning by having a cup of warm water with a slice of ginger, lemon and some coconut oil. Sip it while you get ready and leave that first coffee until later on in the day. It will help with keeping you hydrated, lemon promotes the body’s own cleansing mechanism, ginger is warming and coconut oil helps with absorption of minerals and vitamins and gives you long lasting energy."
Cook for yourself Taking the time to prepare a really delicious home made meal is a sure way to show someone you love them and that someone on this occasion is you! Soups are a great option because you can double up the quantities and freeze in batches. This is our go to recipe for warmth and goodness. Butternut Squash and Lime Soup.
And if you need a kickstart there are oodles of workshops and retreats out there, dedicated to improving your self care regime.
Mindfulness Mediation for Beginners at the Honor Oak Wellness Rooms
Learn to mediate in Norfolk with the London Buddhist Centre
Pilates Retreats at Brooklands Barn in Sussex
Do a detox with Simply Healing Detox Retreats