Self care should be a part of all of our lives and daily routines but we have to remember that self care looks different for everyone. Whilst someone might consider a relaxing bubble bath with candles and a book a valid form of self care, someone else would rather go for a run or head to the gym for a banging workout. Which is also valid. And self care certainly doesn’t have to mean the big things either, the actively taking time out of your day to do some sort of “self care activity”. Basic self care is just as important and over the last few years – when I’ve learnt what self care actually is and how valuable it is – I’ve gradually started to incorporate into my day, every day, without even thinking about it anymore.
For me, Summer is definitely a time to make sure I can feel as good as possible. It’s no secret that I actually hate Summer; I cant handle the heat, it makes me anxious and often leaves me feeling ill. I also don’t enjoy sneezing 400 times a day and being a general snotty mess from May till September. But alas, I have to endure it like everyone else but at least this time of year makes me want to drink more water, eat more fruit, cut out more meat and just generally consume more healthier products. So you know, you win some, you lose some.
In case you hadn’t heard me screaming about it on every social media platform I own… I’m going on a Yoga retreat! I’m still absolutely buzzing and I cannot wait – this is something I’ve never done before and something I’d never even considered doing. I’ve been really into my Yoga for about 2 years now; I practice daily, I work on different areas of Yoga and I’m always trying to expand my practice and work on my body. Not just to get fitter and trimmer – although that’s a bonus – but just learning about my own body, what feels good, what doesn’t and unlocking different areas and poses that I didn’t really know existed. Yoga has changed my life but I’ve never considered taking it further than the comfort of my living room before now.
If I have a chance to talk about Yoga, I will. People I know who don’t care about Yoga are probably sick to death of me talking about it but hey, guess what? I’m not going to stop. In fact, I’m one click away from booking myself into a Yoga retreat in November so that’ll give me another excuse to talk about it even more! Wheyy! Anyway, Yoga is a big part of my life. I practice it every single day (unless I really can’t like being ill or on holiday) and over the last year or so, it really has changed my life.
2018 has been the year of change for me. Not big changes; I haven’t moved house, got a new job or traveled the world but it’s been the year of subtle changes which ultimately, have changed my outlook and in ways… my life. You don’t need a grand gesture in order to change your life – despite what “gurus” may tell you. Traveling the world isn’t feasible for everyone. Moving to another location isn’t as straight and to the point as some people say it is. Circumstances, mental health, physical health, money and a whole variety of other factors can stop us from making these big changes we’re so often told we need to make in order to change our lives. But it’s bollocks.
There’s no better feeling than feeling revitalized and ready to attack the day after a good night’s sleep. Although actually getting out of bed may be a struggle (“just five more minutes won’t hurt, will it?”), it’s nice to be refreshed after a solid 8 hours. However, for many of us, a great night’s sleep is an idealistic pipe dream that very rarely comes to fruition.
In a society where self-care has become such a huge focus in the recent years and months, we’re often told that “these are the things we need to do when we’re feeling down / ill / depressed, in order to improve ourselves” and well, make ourselves feel that little bit better. And whilst that’s great; we all need these coping mechanisms for our down days – we often think only about self care in times of “need”. Boyfriend break up with you? Self care day. Rough day at work? Self care evening. Having a bad time with your mental health? Self bloody care. And again, this is brilliant and we totally should focus on our self care when we’re having a rough time but what about all the other time? You know, all the other days of the year when we’re not having a bad day, our boyfriends haven’t just broken up with us and our mental health is on a pretty good keel. What then?
I’ve always suffered with headaches. They started when I was in my teens and have differed in frequency but all in all, I’m just a headachey person. It’s mostly stress or tension and now, having anxiety, you can imagine I stress and tense quite a bit. Headaches are a strange thing because they can stem from almost anything; mental or physical stress. DID YOU KNOW that once I had a boyfriend that gave me headaches. No… Literally. I had a headache almost every single day that I was with him and I bet you can guess what happened after we broke up? That’s right, bye bye headaches! So if knowing the fact that boys can literally give you headaches is the only thing you take from this post then I’m happy.
If you know me at alllllll by now, you’ll know I don’t relax. Ever. I just find it so incredibly difficult and I have this incessant need to be constantly productive, 24/7. I love how I’m able to get so much done. I love that I’m a goal orientated person. I love that I can get through my daily to-do lists and go to bed knowing I’ve physically done everything I could have possibly done that day. My organisational skills and my Type A personality is one of the only things I actually like about myself so I’m not going to go and start putting myself down for it! But…. I know that it can get unhealthy. We all need down-time. Every single one of us.
At the time of writing this post, it has been revealed that cervical screenings (smear tests) are at an all-time low. It’s a statistic I don’t even want to think about. I turned 25 last September and as predicted, was invited for my first smear test – which I had done 4 days before my 25th birthday (I wrote about my experience here). I suffer with anxiety – GAD to be specific (Generalised Anxiety Disorder) but I suffer extra anxiety when it comes to medical related things.