As I approach 40, I realized that I am a much better person approaching this age range, than I was approaching 30. I actually said that to my husband. He agreed, but asked me, “why do you think that is?” I immediately responded with, “I took a step back and took a personal inventory, then set about tweaking and changing what parts of my life I wanted to make better”.
I hadn’t realized that I was doing this, in a systematic way, until I reflected on it this afternoon. Crazy how that happens right? I would say, it started when I decided to become Catholic. That was a long journey, and a tough road, because my husband at that time, was an atheist. I was also in a new state, knew no one, had no family, didn’t know where the nearest grocery store was, and really started with a completely clean slate.
I worked on my faith, my marriage (learning how to apologize and remember that my husband is on my team not against me, anyone else?), my vocation as a wife and mother, being a good friend, being vulnerable with people, and knowing when to say no to others, and myself.
Most recently, I have been delving into self care. This summer has taught me just how important self care is. I noticed that I thought I was taking care of myself, but I really wasn’t.
Golden Milk: I drink this every day. It’s like the most snuggly blanket wrapping itself around you. It’s also a great support to your hormones, and has anti-inflammatory properties. I don’t let a night go by without it. Here’s the Golden Milk recipe I use, so I have enough for 2 weeks!
Yoga: So yeah, we all know I love Yoga. But, since the nearest studio to my house has closed down, I’ve been completely lost, until a friend posted a link about a 30 day challenge. I’ve since completed the challenge (which is free) upgraded my subscription (cheaper than classes at the studio) and am maintaining a daily yoga practice! Wuuut? Class is in my living room, whenever I am ready. Here’s a link to the 30 Day Yoga Challenge. Each class is 10 minutes, the instructor is totally likeable, and her instructions are easy to follow (even if you aren’t looking at the screen!).
Prayer + Rosary: I can’t have one (yoga) without the other. I pray the rosary every single day. I offer each decade for someone that’s asked for prayer, or something I am struggling with the grace to get through. The last decade is to emphasize all of the other decades that I’ve prayed. My 11 year old son taught me that.
I recently went to confession, and the priest mentioned the book of John for me to read and reflect upon. No, not as part of my penance! I downloaded the She Reads Truth app and purchased their study on the Book of John for $1.99. It goes for 28 days. Once that’s done, I’ll go back to reading a psalm a day.
Becoming Vegan: Whoa! Didn’t see that coming! I was a vegetarian for years, then began eating fish, then meat, and now…I’m 100% Vegan. It started with eliminating dairy from my diet because I was always bloated, felt tired and groggy and read that eliminating dairy could help. Easy enough. I started to feel good within 48 hours, then even better in a week. I thought, hell with it. I’m going Vegan! This site has been super helpful! Here’s my favorite recipe, and it’s incredibly easy to make with just a handful of ingredients. Meals are now easy and quick to prepare, I feel SO much better, and I’ve actually lost a little weight.
I take some supplements to help with vitamin intake and energy, like Super B. How do I know I need more vitamin B? I enter my meals into this handy app and it gives me a breakdown of what vitamins and minerals I need to have more of in any particular day, or when I’ve had more than the recommended amount. Genius!
Epsom Salt Bath with Oils: All that yoga, running after kids, and diet changes, calls for some detox! Bring in the epsom salts and my favorite essential oil blend to use in the bath! (just three drops in two cups of epsom salt and stir – never put the oils into the bath separately! Oil + water don’t mix, remember?) So simple. I bring a book in and read for 20 minutes (that’s the least amount of time I can soak for without losing it because my face is dripping with sweat!)
Reading: I decided I wanted to meet more people outside of the circles I usually run in. What do I love? Reading!!! So, when I read about someone on Instagram going to their chapter meeting, I thought…hmmm! Let’s see if there’s a chapter near me. There wasn’t so (go big or go home!) I started one. I already have 50 members and 9 people have RSVP’ed to our first meet up at the end of August! I am SO excited. I created a FB group so we can connect outside of the meetings and we already have our books selected. I went with The Girly Book Club! See if they have a chapter near you, or consider starting one. They make it super easy and I love their book choices so far!
So, this is part one of how I’ve been working on the self-care aspect of my life. Yes, there’s more. But tell me, Are you really practicing self care? How do you practice self-care? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments!