Today, I would like to invite you to take part in the 7 days of self love challenge, because, quite frankly, you deserve it.
After the mayhem of Christmas (which comes with a daily practice of lovingly giving to others; be it presents, your time or your care), followed by a January of New Year's parties, projects and the self denial that comes with the guilt of an excessive festive season, February is the month to begin refilling your own personal bounty of self-love.
With Valentines Day taking the main stage this month, it is the perfect time to start creating loving relationships with others by first creating a loving relationship with yourself. So lets get cracking! 7 days of easy to do, small acts of self care that will remind you of the simple fact that you deserve the love you so freely give to others.
Day one - Pamper Yourself.
Book that hair appointment, manicure or massage and schedule it in your diary as a non-negotiable date with yourself.
Take a bath and light some candles, pour in some oils and just indulge.
Note - at this point I should mention that if you share your bath surround with your children's toys, find a way of discreetly putting them away so you really can really bliss out without any reminders of motherly duties!
Day two - Tech detox
For tonight, leave all phones at the doors and keep computers and Tv's off.
Cook a delicious dinner or grab a take-away and enjoy a tech free night playing board games with the family, starting a puzzle by yourself or sharing a candlelit dinner with your husband. Whatever you do, make it tech free and spend time reconnecting with yourself and those around you.
Day 3 - Snuggle
Today is the day for snuggling & cuddling.
It is so easy to get caught up in the day to day of everyday life that sometimes we forget to take time out to really appreciate physically connecting with our partners, families and friends. Not only is cuddling scientifically proven to be good for your wellbeing but sometimes a simple hug can be just what the doctor ordered, reminding you and others that you are loved. Make today the day you are conscious of sharing your hugs and love around you.
Day 4 - Nourish yourself
This is the day to nourish your body.
Begin your day as you mean to go on with a warm lemon water and let it be the start of a new day of nourishing foods and drinks. For just one day keep it super clean and you may just like it enough to carry on for the next day, the one after that and on and on. As the weather keeps the chill in the air, it is the time for nourishing slow cooker recipes, stews, soups and home made pies. Think slow cooking, slow living.
Day 5 - Communicate
Today is the day to communicate with loved ones.
Make time for yourself today to communicate with the people you love. So often we will phone friends and chat whilst we unload the washing machine, cook supper, clean the bathroom or whatever else it is we can squeeze in at the same time. STOP. Take a leaf out of the days before mobile phones and decide on a time to call a friend/family member, make a cup of tea, sit in one comfortable spot and allow yourself permission to take the time to connect with the people who make you smile.
Day 6 - Treat Yourself
What would give you great pleasure today?
Is it a new yoga outfit or a weekend away? The pair of shoes you have been eyeing up or a new lipstick? Yup, you heard me right. . . . Today is the day you get to buy yourself a present. I strongly believe in a world where we spend so much of our time working for financial security that every now and then we have to reward ourselves for that hard work. Not only does the action of treating yourself remind the universe that you are open to it's abundance but it also makes the 'working for it' all the more sweeter.
Day 7 - Slow down
This is the day you are going to put aside one and a half hours JUST FOR YOU.
I am not asking for a weekend, a full day or even a half morning. Just 1.5 hours. That may seem like a ludicrous request but I know so many work at home mums that don't even take a half hour break in their day. If they aren't working or stuck at a computer, they are making food for the family, doing the laundry, catching up on family admin or any other number of things that need to happen in a family home. I'm not just talking about the working mums (although a great example) but all women out there who prioritise EVERYTHING other than themselves. 1.5 hours......
Eat your lunch in front of day time TV (Yup, I said it)
Immerse yourself in a magazine or good book
Listen to the radio
Go to a yoga class
Start a journal or just be creative
Sing out loud
Go for a walk
Watch a film in the mid-morning on a weekday
The ideas are endless and for just 1.5 hours, release all guilt, let go of the to-do list and just live in the moment.
This, my friends, is the best Valentines Gift I can give to you.... FULL permission to be happy, to practice self-care and to fall a little more in love with yourself with each day. As you do so, watch how your world and your relationships transform around you.
All you need to know, it that you are loved. You are loved. You are loved.
Kisses my friend.