30 Days of Self-Care

“Close your eyes and imagine the best version of you possible. That’s who you really are. Let go of any part that doesn’t believe it.” — C. Assad

Visualize that you have the perfect Rubenesque body. There is no need to focus on “losing just 10 more pounds.” There is no need to run the gauntlet or a marathon. There is only celebration. You are a mother for crying out loud and your body has gone through enough!

2018 is your celebration of yourself and who you are. In order to be a great mom, you must feel great about yourself and your life.

Psamathe, Frederic Leighton, 1880. This is a painting in the style of Peter Paul Ruebens — this is my ideal body image.

I am never going to be shredded, have tight abs, or cultivate Michelle Obama arms. I haven’t so far and I am cool with this. 2018 is the year of me and my story. This year my plan is to focus on who I am and what I love. I turn 40 this year and I want to celebrate. Self-care is a non-negotiable in my life now. It is something that I do daily.

Here is my 30-day quick list of self-care strategies that don’t involve a lot of time or money:

  • Un-follow any toxic relationships on social media. If I see one more sweaty selfie, I just might lose it.

  • In fact, have designated time for social media that is limited to less than 30 minutes.

  • Reconnect with an old friend and make new memories.

  • Schedule a regular “Me Time.” I have opted for a monthly massage at a local massage school because it is half the price. Or…just get your kids to walk on your back.

  • Read trashy witch books (I think this should be a genre). I recommend the “All Souls Trilogy” or “Outlander.”

  • Take a walk…walk away. It is ok for me to say to my family “I need some me time.”

  • Go see a movie…by yourself and have a good laugh or cry or both. If a movie is out of the question, binge watch your favorite series or a classic movie. I just watched “Little Women” and balled like a baby. “Pride and Prejudice” does that to me too. I am also into stand up comedy shows right now.

  • Set a time for breathing. Sit is a place you feel comfortable for 15 minutes and just breathe.

  • Learn something new. This year I have decided to take up crochet.

  • Play or practice music. Make a playlist of your favorite music. I have some James Brown that I need to get on the good foot with.

  • Do something on your bucket list. I am not ready to commit to this yet. I am thinking big.

  • Allow yourself time to dream. 

  • Draw more to loosen up your creative self. I hear those painting with a twist places are a lot of fun.

  • Drink lots of water and start the day off with a glass.

  • Ask your partner or family for help. Sometimes we forget to ask for what we need, like: “Can you make dinner tonight?” or “I don’t feel like making dinner, can we eat out?”

  • Take a luxurious bath with candles and fancy bath salts (I find them at discount stores all the time). You can deep condition your hair, do a face mask, etc., too. Oh, and LOCK THE DOOR if you feel like you need to.

  • Get a blanket and lay in the grass day or night. Look up to the sky!

  • Do a ridiculous workout video like my personal favorite “Sweating to the Oldies” with Richard Simmons. I think I get more exercise laughing at my awkward dance moves than I do from the “workout.” 

  • Go bra-less. Skip the make-up. Keep on your pjs. I do at least one of these every weekend.

  • Sit down with your morning coffee, diet coke, etc. and enjoy every single sip. I need my black magic.

  • Light a candle (where little hands can’t reach).

  • Take a nap or sleep in. Yes, this is possible. You might need to make some arrangements ahead and get some help from your partner or family on this one.

  • Listen to a podcast while you work or do household chores. I love listening to “The Moth.”

  • Divide and conquer. Take chores or difficult/dreaded tasks and break them into pieces so they are not so daunting.

  • Change your hairstyle for the day. Try a braid, an up-do, or skip it and use some dry shampoo.

  • If you have health insurance, use it to get your lady parts checked, eyes, teeth, etc.

  • Buy yourself a sexy bra or underwear. I saw a lacy, no-support bra the other day for $7.99 that I should have bought. I am going back this weekend. Sometimes I need to feel sexy for me and not someone else.

  • Purge stuff you haven’t used in a while or that is cluttering up your life. I have so many craft supplies which I’ve had for 20 years — time to use them or lose them. I am also getting rid of those size 6 pants that I am not going to fit back into.

  • Set some boundaries — say “No.”

  • Don’t be a jerk to yourself. Just say to yourself, “It’s ok girl.”

Self-care isn’t something you need to add to your to-do list, but rather it’s about cultivating a new relationship with yourself. I hope you will join me and start a list of your own self-care strategies.

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