Hello Gold Star Revolution Squad, and welcome to #tuneuptuesday!
Let's face it, 2020 has been a rough year, and we still have two months to go! In these challenging times, it is more important than ever for us to take good care of ourselves.
Self-care is indispensable when it comes to the awarding of gold stars. When we take care of ourselves regularly, it helps us put our best self forward in all of our daily activities and interactions, which of course will allow us to award more gold stars to ourselves.
And when we are feeling good physically and mentally, it frees up our attention so that we can look outside of ourselves and notice all of the fabulous gold star efforts put forth by our family, friends, and even strangers!
There are a ton of different self-care options out there, so I will highlight just two of my
favorites. My daily “go to” self-care activity is meditation.
I have been meditating for over 20 years now, and while I would love to meditate every single day, on average I probably meditate around 5 days a week. I never let myself go for too long without engaging in a meditation session.
Meditation calms me down both physically and mentally and almost always leaves me feeling refreshed. Another thing that I love about meditation as a self-care practice is that it is absolutely free! I am such a huge fan of meditation that I am sure I will delve further into this topic in other Tune Up Tuesday posts!
If you think you can’t meditate, I urge you to reconsider. So many people think that you need to be able to clear your mind or stop thoughts from forming in your head in order to meditate, but you don’t!
You can start by paying attention to your breath and the experience of breathing. Then, when thoughts arise, which they inevitably will, you can simply observe the thoughts you are having. Notice them and also notice how your mind wanders, often jumping from one topic to another in a matter of seconds.
Don’t judge yourself for the thoughts you are having regardless of their content. It’s natural for thoughts to occur, this happens to everyone! Once you have noticed the thoughts, you can do your best to release them and turn your attention back to your breath. When you notice that you are thinking again, you just repeat the process.
Meditation really is that simple! It can seem complicated, especially because there is so much information on the internet about this topic. A common meditation concern that people have is whether they are “doing it right.” But there truly is no right or wrong way to meditate.
Being negatively judgmental about your meditation sessions or putting pressure on yourself to achieve a certain result defeats the point of meditating. Go easy on yourself and enjoy the process of getting to know how your mind operates!
Another self-care practice that is more of a “treat” for me because I can’t afford to do it as much as I would like is massage. I actually went to massage school almost 20 years ago, and I worked as a massage therapist for several years. So I am a huge proponent of massage and its benefits.
Massage can help you alleviate all sorts of issues from muscle tension and pain to stress and anxiety. It can provide a powerful boost to your immune system and can even help you sleep better. My massage therapist happens to be a very good friend of mine, which makes it doubly awesome to get a massage from her!
There really is no downside to taking care of yourself! There are many wonderful options available, even for those of us who are short on time and/or money. Even something as simple as intentionally carving out more time to spend in person with friends and family (with proper social distancing, of course!) can make a big difference. If you can take even better care of yourself than you have been, I feel confident that you will want to start handing out more gold stars on a regular basis!
Okay readers, it’s your turn! Do you engage in self-care on a regular basis? What practices are your favorites? What small step could you take today to take better care of yourself? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!