2020 has changed life as we know it in countless ways, but we’re approaching the end — you made it! This holiday season is the best time to take a step back and reinvent your self-care routine.
The holidays are just around the corner and while it’s easy to get swept up in the chaos of the season, the end of 2020 is the perfect time to give your self-care routine an upgrade. Between the global pandemic, election chaos, and the 24/7 news cycle, it has never been more important to create time and space for thoughts that aren’t preoccupied with the outside world. To do this, it is important to create simple rituals in your daily life. The difference between ritual and routine is the attitude behind the action. Where a routine is something that you have to do every day, like making your bed and taking a shower in the morning, rituals are meaningful daily practices that have a sense of purpose. A ritual is essentially a routine with mindfulness. Your morning ritual should be simple, personal, and something that you can practice anywhere. Whether you’re scheduling holiday travel or staying at home this year with your family, your morning ritual will keep you grounded and allow you to focus on yourself before jumping into your day. Here are a few of our favorite tips to get started creating your own unique ritual.
In 2020, making time for gratitude is a radical act. Gratitude forces you to identify what is working in your life, rather than what is not. It is selectively positive, reinforcing the good in each day. To practice gratitude, think of one positive thing that happened the day before that you are thankful for and one thing that you are looking forward to today. These can be as small as getting an unexpected text from an old friend, or as big as a new change in your life. Do this every day when you first wake up and if you have a journal, write them down. After a week, see what has changed in how you view your day when you reframe it from the perspective of gratitude.
Start your morning with a glass of water before you move onto your caffeinated beverage of choice. How you enjoy your water is up to you, some people like ice-cold water in the morning as a refreshment, some prefer room temperature. A great choice for creating a ritual is making hot water with lemon. To make this, simply add two slices of lemon (add more juice if you like the taste of lemon) to a glass of hot water. This is a great source of vitamin C and the lemon helps to flush out toxins, balance and maintain your body’s PH levels, reduce inflammation and bloating, and invigorate the brain. Taking time to drink water before you rush to the coffee pot helps rehydrate you from the night and slows your morning down by a few minutes, giving you more space for mindfulness.
Make Your Space Mindful
When your alarm blares and you roll over, debating whether to snooze for another ten minutes or start your day, it helps to love what you see when you wake up. Creating mindfulness in your bedroom means something different to everyone, but the best way to design a space that you love waking up to is by filling it with things that bring you joy. An easy way to create calm is to have a lavender diffuser or candle on your bedside table. The scent of lavender is known to reduce stress and anxiety while creating feelings of calm and well-being. You may like to keep fresh flowers or plants in your bedroom so that you see color and nature when you wake up. For others, plants may be irritating, and placing your favorite book or a framed photo of a person or place you love near your bed is more fulfilling. Making your space more mindful includes taking care of your body. When you wake up in silk pajamas, you wake up feeling refreshed, beautiful, and ready to start the day. If you don’t like wearing a pajama set, you can choose a silk slip for a free and equally restorative night. Keeping your favorite robe by your bed can help on those December mornings that are colder and more difficult to get out of bed. Whatever you love to wake up to, make sure that you are able to bring part of it wherever you go so that you can create the feeling of serenity and ritual if you are traveling for the holidays.
Investing in self-care rituals may seem frivolous at first, especially during the time of the year when giving to others is emphasized, but taking care of others begins with taking care of yourself. 2020 has been a crazy year and as it finally draws to a close, it’s time to celebrate yourself — you made it! Whether you have been balancing working from home with your partner, virtual learning for the kids, or both, you have been investing more time and energy than usual into keeping others productive, safe, and healthy. It’s time to check-in and ensure that you’re also taking care of yourself. With the uncertainty around covid-19 and states beginning to shut down again, your holiday plans may be changing. Creating self-care rituals for the holiday season will keep you calm, sane, and give you more energy to tackle the day with.