My friend and I were hanging up after a long conversation and she told me to “take care of myself.” I smiled and absent mindedly said that I would. Then she paused and said, “Cristel, I mean it, take good care of yourself. There’s a lot going on right now.” My friend’s insistence made me stop. It made me think. Then it made me consider all of the ways, large and small, that I really could take better care of myself. Since running away to the beach isn’t an option, I decided to make a list of 10 simple pleasures that make life a little sweeter and more relaxing. I hope you’ll find one or two ideas that you can incorporate into your life too:
1) Take a hot bubble bath (add a candle and Lush bath bomb to really make it special).
2) Savor a piece of high quality chocolate and a steaming cup of tea or coffee.
3) Buy yourself a fresh bouquet of your favorite flowers. Put them on your desk at work or on your night stand.
4) Take a yin yoga class – it’s soothing, gentle, inexpensive and feels as good as a massage.
5) Have a “bed day”. Yes, a bed day. No obligations allowed. Arrange for the house to be empty. Keep your PJs on, nap when the mood strikes, catch up on magazines, read that book you’ve been meaning to get to, peruse Netflix or catch up on your DVR. It’s all about you.
6) Take a walk around your neighborhood or local park. Take time to absorb the sounds, the sun, the sky…
7) Buy yourself a new journal and write down three more ways you will continue to care for yourself. Then write down three things you are grateful for. More writing prompts can be found here.
8) Snuggle with your significant other or pet.
9) Take yourself to a new restaurant for lunch or dinner. Check Zagat for ideas.
10) Give yourself a shampoo, scalp massage and deep conditioning treatment. Then dry brush, cleanse and moisturize your skin for an all-over glow.