In this day and age, we often get lost in hectic routines and obligations that seem to keep piling up. In these busy periods, the first thing we tend to forget about is ourselves. Whether we’re focusing on our jobs, challenges at home, or getting through the holidays, we don’t necessarily allow ourselves to take a moment to breathe. Unfortunately, this is one of the biggest disservices we can do to ourselves and our loved ones.
Practicing self-care and making it routine – a habit we don’t even think about – is one of the first steps towards finding inner peace. For most people, however, the concept seems unfamiliar, maybe even daunting. After all, who has time to pamper themselves when the laundry keeps piling up, their boss is breathing down their neck, and the kids are out of control?
Well, that’s the key. Self-care habits don’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. They can consist of the smallest things that help us reset and recharge, and consequently, lead more mindful lives.
The first step towards building a strong connection between your mind and body is to start practicing daily meditation. Although for complete beginners, the very idea seems scary, it’s actually not. All you have to do in order to start is set aside a time, a peaceful place, and be kind to yourself.
If you’d rather get the guidance of someone more experienced in the field, you can join a meditation retreat. These events are wonderful opportunities to kickstart your new habit of self-care, with the added benefit of helping you discover practices which you will be able to implement in your daily life.
2. Physical movement
In order to allow our minds to be at peace, we have to make an effort to take care of our bodies as well. Gentle movements that encourage mobility while building strength are an excellent choice. In addition to helping us reinforce the connection with our physical selves, exercise also offers a host of health benefits, including a stress-reducing effect that most people need gravely.
You don’t have to go out and beyond to incorporate more physical movement into your self-care routine. As little as a 15-minute yoga practice in the morning can be an excellent way to start the day. You could also aim to do more walking, especially in natural surroundings, as this offers a multitude of physical and psychological benefits.
3. Fuel and rest
Some people see eating and sleeping as simply something that is keeping us, humans, alive. But what we often forget to consider is the way we approach these basic needs can have a tremendous influence on the relationship we have with ourselves.
This is why prioritizing wholesome habits in this area is so important. Choosing healthy foods and ensuring a peaceful environment in which you can get a good night’s sleep are big steps towards inner peace. And the best part is: these practices can be as simple as decluttering your home and planning your grocery shopping in advance.
For a lot of people, solitude is a scary concept. But, some isolation can be an excellent way to practice self-care.
Think of it as a date with yourself. You don’t have to shun all human contact for days on end, but putting away your phone and doing something that you enjoy, without anyone distracting you, is a helpful practice.
If you haven’t sought out solitude before, it’s best to start small, so you can get used to the novel feel of it. Start by going out for a coffee by yourself or visiting a park with a pen and your journal.
Those who are braver can decide to travel on their own or just visit a weekend retreat. While the experience of somewhere new can allow you to establish a deeper connection with your soul, these novel environments will also create valuable opportunities to meet and connect with new people.
5. Meaningful relationships
Once you’ve established a connection with yourself, it is important to work on your connections with others. Whether you choose to nurture existing relationships or seek out new ones is entirely up to you. The key, however, is to approach the process with openness, love, understanding, and kindness.
Don’t let daily life and work get in the way of spending quality time with your friends and family. Talk to them or participate in activities that allow you to deepen your connection. These invaluable moments will widen your horizons while helping you reach a point of contentment and happiness.
Photo credits: Pixabay
This is a collaborative post supporting our Peace In Peace Out initiative.