This morning as I sat at my desk I got the overwhelming sensation that I needed to take a personal day to feed my soul. It’s hard to explain the feeling you get, and how you know when you need to do some personal nurturing. But if you are at all in-tune with yourself, you know when it’s time.
I think we’ve all heard it a lot, how important it is to take time for yourself. That you have to practice self-care in order to live a balanced, fulfilling life. But how many of us actually do that? How often do we carve out specific time to turn off our electronics, shut ourselves away from distraction, and just feed our souls? Not often, if the general state of the world is any indication. I think we can all agree that the world would be a much better place if everyone took time for some self-love and nurturing. We’d all approach the rest of the world in a much healthier way, and a lot of the world’s problems would quickly get sorted.
But it’s hard. As we launch into adulthood with responsibilities, careers, families, and a whirlwind of other things, taking time for yourself can fall lower and lower on the priority list, while simultaneously become more and more important. I try to keep life pretty simple, and yet I’m still sitting here in need of a good self-care day and wondering how I’m going to manage it. In theory it is easy. I have the time in my life for this sort of thing. The challenge is to be purposeful, schedule time, and not let yourself get sidetracked by other busy work.
The cost of not listening to my body and taking a day to do specific things that aid my mental, emotional, psychological, and even physical well being will probably manifest itself as stress, moodiness, lack of productivity, and a bunch of negative emotions and thoughts. So I thought I would challenge myself, and you, to come up with a list of things that feed our souls. And then hold ourselves accountable for actually taking the time to do them purposefully. If you already have a list of things that fill you and feed you, it’s easier to make time for them, or fit one or two here and there during the week for continuous personal upkeep.
Here are 10 things on my list:
- Sleep in and wake up naturally. The struggle here is getting out of bed when I wake up. Too long laying around can actually have a negative impact.
- Listen to soothing music. Or anything that makes me feel good.
- Drink a cup of coffee or tea. The key here is to do it slowly, savor it, and make it the primary task at hand.
- Do yoga for 30-45 minutes. I usually find a yoga video on YouTube to follow along with. (Have you seen Yoga with Adriene???)
- Meditate. I’m trying to incorporate this into my life more. It can be tricky at times to still my mind, but I inevitably feel calmer, less stressed, and more energized after even a less than successful session.
- Make a delicious meal and eat it. Again, the key here is to eat slowly. Not only is better for your digestion, but it helps break yourself of the rush mentality we all get sucked into.
- Read a good book. Once you get started, it can be hard to stop.
- Take a long, hot shower. You could also take a bath, which I do on occasion. Our new house even has a tankless water heater, so I literally never run out of hot water.
- Clean. Sounds crazy, but cleaning and tidying your space can be so calming. It’s more about the results of the effort, rather than the act of cleaning. But I do sometimes find cleaning and housework to be a kind of grounding meditation.
- Jigsaw puzzles. This helps me unplug, work my brain, and just makes me happy.
Everyone is different, so your list will undoubtedly look different than mine. But I encourage you to make a list and make time.
Hello! I’m Whitney and this is my home for all things food and life.