The Act of Self Care
We sat with Amy Beckett of Blue Sage Spa in Breckenridge, Colorado and discussed the “trend” or buzzword, Self Care. The concept is not new but its need in today’s society is huge. It can refer to taking moments at home to boost your health and well being but can extend to anything that allows you to relax and take some time out. Many of us have so many responsibilities in life that we forget to take care of our personal needs. This is particularly true for mothers, who have many caregiving responsibilities, but moms certainly don’t have a monopoly on letting life get in the way of taking care of themselves. And while it’s hard to prioritize something like taking a bath or getting a body treatment when you have so many other items on your to-do list, self-care is an important aspect of stress management.
How Self Care Benefits You
We are all less able to handle the stresses that come our way when we’re depleted by physical and emotional exhaustion. We are more resilient and more able to handle life’s stress when we are feeling our best both physically and emotionally. A massage, soak in the tub or other forms of pampering revitalize you inside and out.
Taking time out to maintain self-care has several benefits:
TAKE Time Alone
While different people have varying degrees of introversion and extroversion, having some time alone is important for most people’s functioning.
When you’re relaxing by yourself, it’s much easier to slip into a state of quiet meditation, enjoy some self-reflection, or let your problems work themselves out in the back of your mind, without taking all of your focused concentration.
Gives Yourself a Break
Taking a break amidst a tub of warm bubbles or under the warm hands of an experienced masseuse can help you feel like you’re escaping a stressful reality and taking a mental and emotional vacation.
As previously mentioned, it triggers the relaxation response and allows you to come back to the reality of your life feeling refreshed and relaxed.
Assist Your EMOTIONAL Health
Taking time out to care for yourself can remind you and others that you and your needs are important, too. Having a well-cared-for body can make you feel good about yourself and your life, and conveys to others that you value yourself. This can contribute to long-term feelings of wellbeing. Try a guided meditation practice and get plenty of sleep.
Maintain Your PHYSICAL Health
While self-pampering doesn’t always lead to major improvements in overall health the way healthy diet and exercise do, the relaxation you get from Exercise can trigger the relaxation response, which can prevent chronic stress from damaging your health. Go for a hike, head to the gym, grab your skis or snowboard, hit a Yoga session.
Become a Better CAREGIVER
People who neglect their own needs and forget to nurture themselves are at danger of deeper levels of unhappiness, low self-esteem, and feelings of resentment. Also, sometimes people who spend their time only taking care of others can be at risk of getting burned out on all the giving, which makes it more difficult to care for others or themselves. Taking time to care for yourself regularly can make you a better caretaker for others.
Giving your body some special treatment is a natural way to relieve stress. Other than keeping your skin soft and your body in good repair, spa-related activities like massage and warm baths have been known to soothe even small colicky babies like nothing else.
Such activities continue to be effective tools for relaxation as we get older, but we sometimes forget to utilize them.
Self-Care Strategies That Work
Once you’ve decided it’s time to start nurturing yourself and your body, be sure to block off some time for this. Try to schedule a block where you won’t be interrupted. You need only to have a bathroom to give yourself a home-spa experience; you can put on some soothing music, and try some or all of the following self-care strategies.
Take a Bath
Deep-Condition Your Hair
Deep-Clean Your Pores
Care For Your Feet
Nourish Your Skin
Tend to Your Nails
Get a Massage or Self Massage with Rollers
Go to Bed Early
Do not allow circumstances control you. Give your self space to acknowledge the stress around you and then let go. Sending love.
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