It’s that time of year again – the Yuletide festivities are over for another year, the days are short, cold and often damp, and it feels like an age until the new shoots of spring appear, or the next Bank Holiday is on the horizon.
If you are feeling a touch of the January blues, worry not! We have the perfect recipe of healthful-indulgence to see you through with our three favourite self-care treats to indulge in during the coldest months of the year.
Vital to boosting your mood and welcoming that warm wave of comfort we all want in January, is to pay extra attention to pampering your body. This means different things to different people, but essentially, it is about giving yourself the space and time to enjoy some bathroom based treat-time for your body.
The first thing to do is to make your bathroom warm and welcoming. If you like candles place some candles safely around and place a fresh towel on the radiator.
If you have a bath, run yourself a bath and add some luxury with pampering extras. Our favourite is Epsom Salt, which is high in magnesium, as you soak in the bath your skin absorbs the mineral and alleviates aching muscles and fatigue.
A great alternative to Epsom Salt is pink Himalayan salt, which is more widely available. Add a handful of the salt and some relaxing bath oil, or a few drops of Lavender, Rose or Rosemary essential oil. Hop in, soak and enjoy. Maybe select some relaxing music or listen to a gentle pod-cast or audio-book while you wallow.
If you have a shower you can still enjoy a salty scrub, in a small bowl combine your Epsom salts or Himalayan salt with a dash of grape-seed oil (you can find this in most large supermarkets and health food shops), plus a couple of drops of your favourite essential oil. (There are many good, pre-made salt scrubs available in shops should you rather a less homemade option).
Once you are in the shower take the salt-scrub and apply to limbs and torso, avoid the face and sensitive areas! It's nice to pay some special attention to elbows and knees, which are often a bit ignored. Allow the salt to dissolve and rinse off any excess. Breathe in the scent of the remaining oil as you continue to enjoy your shower time.
While there is still length in the darker evenings and not much on the social agenda, it can be really beneficial to take time to check in with yourself about your goals, aspirations, hopes and dreams for the coming year.
Make a comfortable space for yourself at a desk or table, grab yourself a delicious hot drink, dig out all those old magazines or newspaper supplements from the recycling, a fetch a pair of scissors and a stick of glue – it’s time to create a vision board (Pinterest is a great non-paper alternative).
Take time to leaf through the images, pay attention to the pictures and any that appeal to your aspirations, cut out or select. Place them on to a big piece of paper and start gluing! (Left over cardboard packaging will also do if you don’t have a big sheet of paper handy, or even attach the clippings to the front of your fridge if you are blessed with a big fridge and an abundance of fridge magnets).
Always dreamed of setting up your own coffee shop? Select the images that speak to you of that.
Always wanted to move to the country and live in a pile, complete with waxed-jacket and Labrador? Choose those types of image.
Whatever it is you want, put it on your board and look at it often.
These images are positive anchors – they remind you of your long-term goals and help you manifest your best life. Your imagination is a powerful tool; it is your ally to your abundant best life.
After all the festivities and exertion of December, and maybe after a long year, it’s time to welcome in some hard-earned quality rest. More so than ever scientists are coming to understand the important health benefits of a good night’s sleep.
So, if it’s something that you tend to overlook in favour of another episode of that box-set and you’re feeling worn-out or cranky by mid-afternoon, this could be the one for you!
The key to good quality rest is your environment; keep your bedroom clean and clear of clutter, make it a sanctuary of quiet and calm. Prepare your space: De-clutter. Move the telly out. Make sure your curtain or blinds are hanging or working well. Shake the duvet daily and clean the sheets regularly. Set up the space as best you can for yourself, as if your favourite person were coming to stay. Make it soft and inviting. Keep lights soft and warm (try to avoid the harsh blue type light bulb and opt for the type that are top of the warm scale – indicated on the packaging). Maybe consider adding a plant to the room, or a natural reed diffuser.
Once you have made your space welcoming, calm and nurturing, take time to enjoy the process of going to bed, set a reminder on your phone - and when it’s time to go, make sure you go. Have a lavender bath or shower beforehand, take a cup of chamomile tea, a hot water bottle, your favourite book and snuggle up. Opt for minimal phone or screen interaction in bed. Consider none at all – it has been shown to have a disruptive affect on sleep. Get cosy and get your 7-9 hours - give yourself the best-rested chance to enjoy the winter days.
All our self-care treats are just as good in the spring, summer and autumn. Let self-care be the gift to yourself that keeps on giving – all year round.
Stay well and happy beautiful one, lots of love,
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