"Self-care” is a buzz word. It makes sense that it has become such a trend because the need for it is undeniable. We are living in an incredibly fast paced, technologically dense world. For me, self-care calls for presence. It can range anywhere from leaving your phone in another room to investing in a spiritual retreat. The common thread here is coming closer and closer to yourself.
Self-care can be like taking an emotional, mental, physical and spiritual shower. The more you are able to incorporate it into your daily life the more clear, level headed, and at peace you can be. But it's not always easy to incorporate self-care into our lives. In fact, we can be very resistant to caring for ourselves as we are prone to err on the side of distraction, absorbing all that we are bombarded by in this information age, the Age of Aquarius.
So, here are some powerful and affordable self-care practices I’ve picked up along the way:
- Less phone, less phone! Makes such a huge difference.
- Having a Sadhana. I do Kundalini but I believe any kind of practice that you know makes you feel better and you can dedicate some time to everyday…repetition is key! Try doing a 40 day Sadhana.
- Nature reset
- Crying. Let it out, let it go.
- Plant medicine in many forms i.e. nourishing yourself with tea infusions
- Retreats (investment)
- Anything that brings you joy and doesn’t harm you
- Saying no
- Saying yes
- Being with loved ones
- Dancing your heart out
- The obvious pampering self care
An Exercise for Stepping Back Into Your Power
A great way to have a concrete clear list of ways you can do self-care is getting it down on paper.
Start with a piece of paper split into four with a circle in the middle of what you want to call your highest self. On one side make a list of the actions that you do when you feel in your power. Then, opposite to that, make a list of the adjective that describe you in your power. If you have a hard time, ask a friend or partner to list off a couple adjectives that describe you when you’re at your best.
Below that, make a list of actions you do when you’re out of your power and to the right of that, adjectives that describe you in that place. Refer back to this list when feeling out of your power so you have a list of actions you know you can take to move towards a place of power.
I’ve embarked on the ultimate self care journey. I'll be spending the next 4 months in my heart soul home Bahia, Brazil. Leaving the city reminds me of the simplicity of life and the ever-changing nature of it. It’s much easier to allow the changes in yourself when you realize that it just is. We must not resist what is. Bahia is like a magic container for me to create growth and transformation within myself. It allows me to do deep self-care under a huge umbrella.
I believe the practice of self-knowledge is one of the most powerful forms of self-care. All human beings are cyclical, like moon, the ocean, and even the Earth. When we forget this, it can cause a lot of unease. As we begin to take note of ourselves and our patterns, we realize we too are like the oceans and the moon. As a woman, I have a built-in chart of my cycle. Each time I bleed I shed a layer and a new cycle begins. Instead of allowing the emotions to creep up on me, I can welcome this moment and create space for this time of shift.
This practice of self-study also allows me to tune into when I can nourish others better. This is a radical and important way to see self-care. It is not selfish, for we must care for ourselves in order to take care of others and to be of service in the world. To give from a place of love. To really give from your heart. In the moments when we are full and in flow, our energy and aura can reach others powerfully.
The Earth can hold us an aid us deeply in our “self-care." As we watch and tune in with nature, we can begin to connect to the elements and ask for help in letting go. Take a moment to lay on the earth, or your floor, and ask the earth to take from you what you need to let go. To imagine your energy or whatever it is that is stuck flowing down into our mysterious, beautiful, deep, loving great mother. She holds us and allows us to live on her everyday. Letting go is the ultimate form of self-care.
Malia co-creates and leads intimate retreats at her heart home Casa Paraiso Verde, with a taste of Bahia’s culture and medicine of the Atlantic Rainforest and ocean. For more information about what’s coming up next, email Malia here.