Yoooo talk about a concise intro, now it's time to get shit done son.
What is self care? It might sound like a bad euphemism for masturbation and if that's how you look after your mental health then you do you my friend (not even gonna bother making a joke there, too easy). However, the general idea of self care is prioritising your own happiness and good state of mind over other things in your life. Self care is a huge part of my life and for me it's really important for keeping me in a good state of mind.
So you feel shitty for whatever reason and you want advice on how to feel less shitty or even actually feel good, my first question is; are you looking after yourself? That's literally the entire basis for self care (in my opinion anyways). Here are some ways to banish those shitty feelings, take a breather, relax a bit, sort yourself out etc etc.;
- Have a bath - tell everyone at home that you're taking 30 minutes to yourself, run that bath, use that fancy ass Lush bath bomb and chill. Relax. Take a few deep breaths. The bath is a magical land of relaxation, embrace it.
- Stop saving stuff up for important use - fancy hand creams, fancy wine, expensive stuff that you've decided to hide away for special occasions. In the words of some very wise people, treat yo'self. What is the worst that can happen if you drink a glass of that champagne with your spag bol on a Tuesday evening? Add a bit of special to your day because you're worth it, life is short and why the fuck not? Don't do this every day because then it'll lose it's magic but every once in a while, go mad. Do it. It's fun. You don't need a reason to be good to yourself so give a regular day some magic.
- Don't apologise for anything that makes you happy - unless it's something that's illegal or generally frowned upon, just own it. I enjoy seeing dogs on the street and I like pointing them out to whoever's with me or, if possible, going up and making friends with dogs. It's fab and yeah a lot of people think it's a bit sad to get so happy over a little four legged animal but fuck them, dogs are great. It reflects more on the meanie giving you grief over your happiness than it does on you, they're projecting onto you. They're a sad, little person who's parents didn't hug them enough. Hug them and whisper 'get a life' in their ear, then walk off and keep going on your merry way.
- Learn to recognise toxicity and learn to distance yourself - toxic people are unavoidable but what you can do to minimise their impact is try to distance yourself or if that's not feasible, put up your walls. Visualise all their bullshit as a physical substance emanating from them, visualise a wall around yourself and that substance bouncing off it and going right back to them. Sounds stupid but just try it and you'll see how it works.
- Don't take on other people's shit - everyone has enough of their own so don't burden yourself. You can be sympathetic without being empathetic.
- Little things are key - I'm such a 'little things' person, it's genuinely uplifting to smile at the small things that happen during your day. Hearing your favourite song on the radio, finding a fiver in your pocket, not getting rained on while walking to work/college/school/the shops, rainbows, I live for shit like that. Start looking out for these little things, feel them good vibes.
- Treat. Yo. Self. - I know I mentioned this above but this deserves a whole bullet point to itself. Have some spare cash this week and you've been admiring something in a shop window for a while? What's stopping you? It's ok to be frivolous every now and again! If it's going to make you feel good then it'll have a positive impact on your mindset, make yourself feel special.
- Light a candle - ridiculous but for some reason this is a big one for me, my Yankee collection is ever growing because there's just something about candles that makes me happy and relaxes me.
- Routines and rituals - there's something about the human psyche that finds rituals so very pleasing and I'm embracing that 100%. Making tea, getting ready for a shower, putting on my makeup, these are all things that I have a routine for and these routines give me so much peace and solace, I can't even begin to explain why. Start acknowledging your daily rituals, savour them, this is one way you can find happiness in your every day.
- Meditation and mindfulness - self explanatory, all that deep breathing is bound to relax you at the very least. Go check out the Headspace app, 10 minute guided mindfulness sessions, a godsend if you are a busy human who might only have 10 minutes to spare. The guy who created Headspace, Andy Puddicombe, has a TED talk so he must be doing something right?
I think these are all the tips I can muster for the moment so if I think of more I'll be back with a revised version of this post. Try a few of these ideas, they're all so easy so you've no excuse! If you have any more things you'd like to add to the list, leave a comment below, tweet me (@EarthToNiamh) or go leave a post on the Glitter & Glory facebook page.
2016 is the international year of Get Your Shit Together so go forth and conquer kids xo