We all could use a little reminder to make time for ourselves and plants are great helpers. Growing something takes time, energy and patience, no different than developing a practice of self-care. When we take time to nurture a plant we can simultaneously absorb the lessons for ourselves. Self care is never a selfish act.
Here are a few reminders that have helped us:
1) We are unique and self-care means different things to each of us.
For some, drinking chamomile tea and knitting would be very relaxing. But maybe you don’t enjoy the taste of chamomile, or looping yarn is not your idea of fun. It’s okay to be honest with yourself when something that’s supposed to be relaxing doesn’t relax you. You’re unique and your self-care should be too.
2) Unplug – even if it is for a few hours.
Digital devices are addicting and can cause us to mindlessly scroll or binge-watch. it’s not always beneficial. Too much time on your device is soul-depleting, especially if you end up comparing yourself with “perfect” images or getting lost in a spiral of appalling news stories. Remember to unplug often.
3) Forgive yourself.
Sometimes (usually most times) we are hard on ourselves. About the laundry, about the dishes, left over items on our to-do list at work, about so many more things. Try to practice acceptance and forgiveness towards yourself, you are only human and have to face that you cannot do it all.
4) Appeal to your senses.
When strapped for self-care ideas, go back to your five senses. Hug someone or something. Watch your favorite movie. Make a cup of your favorite tea and drink it by candlelight. Breathe in the scent of fresh flowers. Listen to the rain fall against the window.
5) Don’t forget about the basics.
Never underestimate the magic of a eating a balance meal, having a good night’s sleep and taking a hot shower. When we’re busy or feeling blue, we quickly let our basic needs fall by the wayside; try to remember that the effect they can have on our moods is impactful.