Indulgent self care is a necessity. Yes….it is also a luxury but small luxuries are a necessity. Many of us feel a lot of guilt and shame when we take time to put ourselves first.
Very often, those that we’re in relationship with will take our saying ‘no’ to their needs to prioritize our own needs personally. What we often fail to recognize, is that supporting each other to self prioritize and self care is a means for being able to generously give of ourselves to others and to meet their needs. Think about it….when we feel good and have provided for our fundamental needs we have the energy to give, we’re able to think about what others need. When we are depleted, we can only think of ourselves and “what about me?!?”.
This is also in alignment with “Empowered Responsibility”; we are each responsible for our own happiness and wellbeing…it is no one else’s job to make us happy. Imagine if everyone took fundamental care of themselves seeking only how to give (from having an abundance of energy), instead of perpetually seeking to take (resulting from feeling perpetually depleted).
I’ve lived the contrast…never being able to say ‘no’, always placing myself at the bottom of the totem pole, conforming to living for other people comfort placing my needs aside all while believing that this made me a caring and virtuous person.
What it actually made me was empty, resentful and generally pissed off!
It took a minute (lol, a couple of years) to be able to take care of myself first without feeling guilt or shame. Going against the grain of everything that we know about how to conduct ourselves in relationship is not an easy pivot, but the results don’t lie.
My personal experience of flipping this relationship paradigm resulted in my being a better mom (my kids were happier!), being a better partner in my relationship, a better friend, having more energy to follow through with my goals and having a significantly brighter outlook and relationship with life!
Putting yourself first is NOT selfish…if you have not already embraced this truth, I beg you to try it on.
In the meantime, I would love to share one of my most cherished, Ayurvedic inspired, self-care practices with you. This is a ritual that leaves me feeling nourished, relaxed and…well….cared for. You can enjoy it morning or night although I find it to be best when you can be mellow and quiet afterwards and I encourage you to do it at least 3-4 times per week.
There are a few products that I recommend from my own experience which you can find in the SHOP on my website. I will also include links to those favorite things of mine throughout the instructions.
You will find a little how to booklet in your program portal, but I’ve gone ahead and added it here as well.
The first four steps of this are best done first thing in the morning before drinking or eating anything:
Clean Your Tongue- you can use either a tongue scraper or the side of spoon. Either way, do this gently, you do not need to apply much pressure.
Floss Your Teeth- every day
Oil Pull – I like to use coconut with a drop of essential oil mixed in. I also love the Banyan Botanicals Daily Swish in cinnamon or mint
Brush your teeth- with a natural, fluoride free toothpaste
*Meditate or, if doing this ritual in the evening, meditate after you’ve completed all of the steps- 5 minutes minimum…commit to you!
Dry Brush – Simply take a dry, natural bristle brush and brush your body stimulating circulation and sloughing off dry, dead skin. Begin with the feet including the soles, brushing in long strokes working toward the heart. Do your entire body, as much of it as you can reach, minus any sensitive parts, working toward your heart. Please be sure to avoid any areas of irritation.
Warm Oil Massage – I save this for evenings and leisurely afternoons. Warm a rich oil like olive, almond or sesame (coconut will be too light for the cold season). I warm it by pouring some into a small mason jar and putting it into the sink with hot tap water. Let it sit and warm for 5 minutes. Pour a small amount of the oil into the palm of your hand and begin vigorously rubbing it into your joints in a circular motion.
Massage it into all of your skin as you work your way up from the tops of your feet. *Do not do the soles of your feet until you get out of the shower. Do them very last before you put on socks. Do your face, ear lobes, between your fingers…everywhere.
**Dump a generous amount of baking soda into your bathtub or shower floor when you’ve completed this step. Wipe and then rinse all of the oil off of the tub/shower floor so the next time you or a loved do not slip and fall the next time you shower!**
Neti Spray – some people love to neti…it’s not my thing BUT I understand the value of it, therefore I’ve found a compromise: neti spray. This is one of the best things that you can do to clean out airborne junk and support your immune system. Add nasya oil for ultimate protection…..
Nasya Oil – Dropping oil into your nose might sound weird but it’s incredible. The benefits include creating a barrier against airborne toxins, cleans the sinus passages of toxins, improves breathing, has been proven to help with migraines, headaches…even snoring. It calms the senses and supports restful sleep. Do this as part of both your morning and bedtime routine
How to apply nasya oil: lie down with a neck roll or pillow under your neck, allowing your head to comfortably tip back. Place 3-5 drops of nasya oil (begin with 3 drops at first….you can find it on my online shop too) into each nostril and take a big sniff in. Rest with your head back for a few minutes while massaging upward along the outside of your sinuses, pushing the oil upward. Massage not only along the outside of your nose but also under and around your eyes.
*this neti & nasya practice helped me greatly reduce snoring at night and reduced my sons perpetual, seasonal runny nose!
To complete this delicious self care ritual, oil and massage your feet, put on some seriously comfy clothes made from natural fibers such as cotton, wool or silk whenever possible. In the morning, enjoy a cup of hot water with lemon, in the evening, enjoy a warm cup of Moon Milk.
This gorgeous ritual is a part of my ESM2 21 Day Self- Care Program!