The last year has brought all kinds of emotions and needless to say its been like a rollercoaster. There are things that I certainly haven’t dealt with and if you’ve read my blog before you’ll know that occasionally I struggle with my mental health. So when I don’t take care of myself, or don’t see the point it really has a negative impact on my mental wellbeing (along with other factors of course). I haven’t done many things over the last year for myself, due to excuses some of which may sound familiar to you too. “I don’t have the time”, “I’m just too tired” or the plain old “I just don’t have the energy” and not going to lie, some days there is no other energy waiting in reserves because you’ve given it to everyone else.
During January I took part in Veganuary and the WaterAid ‘Just Water’ challenge. It was a huge shock to my system. I was literally having between 3 and 6 cups of whatever caffeinated drink took my fancy on a daily basis, and I like sweet coffee so the sugar added up. Just drinking water and water along really made me take stock of the amount of caffeine I was relying on day to day. Something have to give, and you can totally have too much of a good thing. Food wise, becoming vegan has been really good for me. I’m seriously considering everything I buy, the ingredients in the products I’m picking up. It has stopped me from mindlessly snacking and I have upped the old fruit and veg intake as a by-product of becoming vegan. Thumbs up from me. So much so that I decided to stay vegan with the occasional vegetarian day when we eat out which doesn’t happen all that often. I still drink a ton of water right now too, so this has been a positive change for sure.
February had brought me plenty of mental lows. Work has really tested me lately, and if it wasn’t for the group of amazing woman I have as friends there I don’t think I would have made it through the bloody month. So as February draws to a close I am thankful. I am thankful for the friends I have found, their support and love over everything.
In an attempt to pull myself from a mental funk, which has been building up for months I started gathering tips and trips for some DIY spa treatment, I started paying real attention to my skin and building a skincare routine which I’m about three weeks in to. The difference in my skin is amazing to me. And who would have thought that (essentially) washing your face and putting on serum would be so up lifting. Routine is ovs a lots more than just washing my face, but I will take the time to explain my new skin routine in another post.
Today I was lucky enough to start with a sea salt and peppermint infused bath. My little choose the perfect morning to have a lay in. I get home at about 1am most mornings after my shift at work, actually switch off about 2ish to hopefully sleep and try to get up at about 8/8.30 to start to the day. Today Dee was still sleeping so I took the opportunity to run a hot bath. I got some Radox bath salts at Tesco on Wednesday, it was on offer and I’ve been dying to get some salts for the bath. It smelt amazing. I squeezed in a DIY face scrub, made with coconut oil, bicarb and lavender (I will do a DIY on this too because it is so good). It’s so gentle on your face, but great at exfoliation with a moisture boost from the coconut oil too. Today it doubled as a shaving lotion too, leaving my legs super hydrated. By the time I was just getting out of the bath Dee had woke up and was sat in bed chattering away to herself.
I’ve been doing a 15-20 min yoga sesh which I can normally get done while Dee is eating her breakfast, but today I choose to skip this out. Maybe it is an excuse but that monthly time is upon me and I am exhausted to be quiet frank, so I’m being kind to myself and telling my head that there are no hard feelings for not doing it. I’ll pick it up another day. The weather has been miserable and this morning is no difference, storm after storm and now were getting snow. Not the nice kind of snow, the slushy wet kind that’s no good for anyone. This is also impacting my mood massively. I just want to stay home and be cosy. So I choose to make some oats for breakfast. I make mine with oat milk, water and a sprinkle of cinnamon. I made a low sugar jammy style topping with frozen berries to top it all off. It was pretty good, hearty and warming.
Being kind to yourself isn’t always grabbing a chocolate bar; I’m learning slowly that it’s eating the right food, drinking more water, going for a walk even though it’s raining out. It’s getting a bath regardless of the time of day, its having an uninterrupted hour where possible just to absorb the quiet and maybe some body lotion.
Being kind to yourself takes commitment and practice, something that I haven’t done for such a long time because as a mum everything else comes first. So I’m making myself a promise; to take care of me. Which isn’t to neglect anything else around me, but it does mean I have more good energy to spend on everything else. It’s so easy to forget and not recharge your own batteries, and I often found myself raising an eyebrow to those that have spoken about self-care thinking it’s a little selfish and when do you actually get the time. In reality you have to make the time, even if its two mins of deep breathing, taking note of your lungs filling and in turn your breath releasing.
I urge you to try it if you don’t already practice self-care. I promise you, it will make you feel more like you, less stressed, more balanced and of course have more to give the ones you love. Part of my self-care is to get back into the things that I love the most. Writing being one of them. So here’s hoping for a posting schedule in the near future.
Love you self; Love L, xox