Now that we’re into February, our minds turn towards the upcoming Valentine’s Day. That can mean different things to different people. For some people who are single, it can mean a day to forget or avoid. For others who have a spouse or significant other, it’s an opportunity to show love and care for them. Another idea to consider is the notion of Self-Care or showing love and care for yourself. From a lot of the information I have read over the years, (HeartMath research, Deepak Chopra, Pema Chodron, Wayne Dyer, Marianne Williamson, etc.) there’s a ton of research and information on the benefits of Self-Care. And what they’re all finding is that not only does Self-Care benefit you, but it also greatly benefits the significant people in your life. By taking some time this month to engage in Self-Care practices, you’ll be better able to show your love and affection to your special someone.
For example, think about the last time you had a massage or just took a walk to relieve some stress. I’ll bet that your encounters with other people in your life that day or the next went better than usual. When we take the time to settle ourselves and get in a balanced state of mind, we can respond to stress better instead of reacting to it in a frenzied manner.
What is Self-Care?
What is Self-Care? Well, in my experience, it really depends on you. You might be the type of person who likes to take a time out by going for a walk, doing a crossword puzzle, sitting on a swing or rocking chair, getting a pedicure, reading a book or something else that quiets the mind and relaxes the body. Everyone has their own personal needs and once you can identify what brings you to a place of feeling settled and balanced, it’s important to make time for it.
So here’s a combined list of some of the Self-Care activities that my clients and I are doing:
- Walk outdoors (10-30 minutes)
- Star gazing (5-10 minutes)
- Meditation (10-30 minutes)
- Bike ride (20-45 minutes)
- Yoga Nidra
- Read a book (10-25 pages)
- Look out a window (10-15 minutes)
- Music (30 minutes)
- Draw (30-60 minutes)
- Paint (30-60 minutes)
- Listen to audiobook (30 minutes)
- Listen to podcast (30-45 minutes)
- Dance (15-30 minutes)
- Play an instrument (20-45 minutes)
- Salt bath (15-25 minutes)
- Sauna (15-20 minutes)
- Swim (30-45 minutes)
- Run (30-45 minutes)
- Prayer (15-20 minutes)
- Heart-Coherence Techniques (5 minutes) (see below)
It’s important to come up with some Self-Care ideas and try to apply them to your life on Valentine’s Day (or every day!) and see what benefits you receive from doing them. It’s my guess that you will not only see the positive results within yourself, but those around you will also feel your good energy and that makes them feel good as well. If it doesn’t, then it might be a good idea for them to apply some Self-Care techniques in their life! You can share this blog with them.
I also believe that the airlines have it right when they tell you to put your mask on first before putting on your child’s mask. It’s essential to take care of yourself first before trying to take care of others.
There are also several heart coherence techniques that have really benefited me and my clients. As a Certified HeartMath® Coach, I can work with you on learning these techniques in order that you can quickly find that inner peace and calm while in the midst of stress and chaos. These techniques take only a few minutes of practice each day. Once you’ve practiced only 5 minutes per day for a few weeks, you’ll begin to notice that you are better able to manage your energy levels during stressful times. Once you notice yourself handling stress better, you’ll gain confidence in your ability to handle stress. Wouldn’t that be ideal?
You’ll begin to anticipate a meeting with your boss or disagreement with your significant other without anxiety or dread. These techniques are not meditation, they are energy-management skills and they only take a few seconds to implement once you get the hang of them. They are so simple and yet powerful. So let me know if you’re open to learning more about them. I know that you will experience great benefits in using them. And like most Self-Care practices, it will not only benefit you, but those in your life as well.
Call or email me with any questions or to set up a free call.
Happy Valentine’s (Self-Care) Day!