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A Note on Self Love

February to me has always been the longest month. It’s always been the darkest, and the coldest, and the hardest to get through; winter has taken its hold, and it seems that spring is just a glimmer in the distant future.  This is the time, especially after the current election, you may be finding yourself not able to shut out or shut down that internal silent screaming that’s been cranked up to eleven. It’s exhausting. It’s bleak. It’s the perfect time to practice some self-care and indulge in some self-love.

I’ve compiled a list of practical ways to make you feel better and hopefully help cope through these troubling times. Remember, it’s awfully hard to be 100% effective in your outside endeavors when your internal self is being ignored.

  • Exercise!

I don’t actually know what that is, but I’ve heard about it. Gentle stretching, yoga, even just a 10 minute walk outside can help clear your mind, and make your body feel better.

  • Nap!

I am the self-titled Queen of Napping. I anger nap. I sad nap. I boredom nap. You may call it an escape, I call it being sleepy AF.  And, none of us are getting our full 8 hours.

  • Treat Yo-self!

There is something very soothing in a ritual. If you have a skincare routine, take your time with it. A bubble bath, a pedicure. Even if you’re rubbing your own feet with some olive oil, you’re doing something nice for yourself.

  • Get all Woo Woo with your bad self!

Stick with me here, sage is a wonderful thing. Saging your home and yourself is a practice that is said to banish negative energies and clear away bad vibes from yourself and your house. Now, you may not subscribe to that belief, but lemme tell you…when you are quietly sitting and you have the sage burning (safely in an ashtray or flame retardant bowl), and you’re thinking of positivity, it’s really easy to start feeling calmer and more centered. Manifestation and visualization is a powerful thing.

  • Meditate!

I have never been able to do it, unless I’m doing something else, like burning sage, but it is an incredibly popular way to ground oneself.

  • Drink plenty of water and eat something that isn’t totally made from sugar!

Eating most of a bag of Skittles may make sense in the moment, but I always regret it later.

  • Dance party USA!

Put on your favorite music and dance with your pets or roommate or by your damn self! Work up a sweat and get silly with it!

  • Think about something you do well!

We all have a talent. When things are looking rough, and we’re feeling bad about ourselves, it’s too easy to fall back on the “I’m a terrible person who’s no good at anything” train of thought. That’s bullshit. We all have something we’re good at or that we like to do. Maybe it’s something creative, maybe it’s practical. Maybe it’s just making the best damn peanut butter and jelly sandwich in the world. You should do that. And congratulate yourself on doing it.

  • Puppy or kitty or any pet snuggles!

If you don’t have a pet, borrow one. It’s worth it.

  • Write!

Journaling, either written or art journaling, is a great way to make sense of any jumbled thoughts you may have. Writing down your thoughts, even the ones you don’t want to put a name to, may help to see things more clearly, make connections, or see things from a different perspective.

  • Cut yourself some slack!

We don’t have to be on all the time. Realize and acknowledge the feelings, be in the present, and understand things will get better.

Loving yourself can be a simple thing to do. Even if it’s just quietly letting yourself rest for a moment, or turning off your phone.  Get yourself some flowers this Valentine’s day and let’s make a promise to date ourselves. If you do nothing else, you could love yourself by going to the Garden/Chamber on High Street.

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