I joke a lot on here about being self-indulgent. I like to travel, exercise, take baths and lather my skin up with the most decadent products I can find, but I’m honestly not frivolous or fragile. I just like to take care of myself, and I do so without abashment. It wasn’t always that way though. I was a bit of a tomboy growing up, with wild hair and a smile that was more gums than teeth. I can’t remember what I washed my face with in high school, I rarely paid attention when I lost toenails from sports (wish I was joking), and I don’t think I took a single bath between the ages of eight and eighteen.
As I’ve gotten older, a lot of things have changed, but the main catalyst was a health scare I had a few years back. It shook me to my core and left me with a lot to think about. No longer could I eat an apple with yogurt as lunch, or a box of cookies for dinner. And I had to find ways to keep my stress at bay, no matter what. I had to actually take care of myself – something I’m not sure I was really doing at the time.
As a youngster, I took my body for granted, beat it up, fed it whatever, and never had to worry about my health or wellness. I played sports my whole life, and the closest I ever came to an injury was two weeks with tendonitis. Seriously. So, when I found myself sitting in a doctor’s office looking at brain scans, it made me really think about my body as something other than a thing to put clothes on. I needed to respect it, take care of it, feed it good things, and yes, pamper the heck out of it. It wouldn’t be around forever.
Self-care can be anything from meditation to reading a book at night, walking in the woods or enjoying a coffee with friends. It’s the thing you need to do to keep your stress levels down, to keep your body healthy, and to care for your soul. Everyone says “I’ll do it later when I have more time,” but I say, do it now. Don’t wait to take care of your sleeping problems, or cut down your sugar intake. Read that book you say you don’t have time for! Be purposeful and cognizant. There’s always enough hours to take a few for yourself – you just have to decide that it’s important.
I relax by doing yoga, working outside, planting and tending flowers, petting my cat, taking hot baths, reading novels, and of course, doing face masks. In fact, you can do several of these at once! Take a hot bath, with a face mask, burn a candle, put on zen music, and read – all at the same time! It’s the ultimate self-care ritual that will make you feel so, so good.
And who knows, maybe after you give it a try, you too will become a queen of self-care.
What do you do for self-care? Share with me in the comments below! And if you missed last week’s opinion article read it here!
P.S. This is my 300th article! Wahoo!! Thanks for all the amazing support here on She’s So Bright! I’m looking forward to bringing you more excellent content, exciting reads, and creative work. Thanks for being along on this journey with me! <3