Self care is definitely not all bath bombs and face masks… Things like standing up for yourself, setting boundaries and taking care of your health are, in my opinion, the most important parts of self care. But sometimes, a little pampering is exactly what you need.
Stress is a killer.
There are so many negative effects of stress on both the body and the mind. If you’re stressed out, it’s going to be a lot harder to take care of yourself and to build a life that you love. High blood pressure, weight issues, insomnia, and depression are just a few of the possible results of being under too much stress. No matter how well you try to take care of yourself, if you never take the time to relax and unwind, you’re pretty much a ticking time bomb.
Pampering can mean different things for different people.
I’m not saying that you have to run out and buy all the bath bombs and face masks or get an expensive massage. That may be the idea of pampering for some people, but it isn’t a one size fits all scenario. When I say take time for pampering, what I really mean is time for relaxing. For some people, that might mean the full spa experience. But for others, it could mean sitting on a really comfortable couch with a hot drink and a great book. For someone else, it might be sitting in a quiet room or meditating. Maybe for you, it’s having a glass of wine and reality TV, or a milkshake and video games. Everyone has a different idea of pampering.
For me, it depends on the day (I love all of the options I listed above).
Yesterday it hit me that it had been a while since I’d indulged in some pampering. I have been go-go-go lately. When Emily is awake, I’m all hers- empowering, educating, engaging, entertaining and more. Whenever she’s been asleep, I’ve been working hard either on my shop or this site, or working on our home renovations. Combine that with being in my second trimester, I’m exhausted and sore all of the time. After putting Emily to bed last night, I finished the final coat of painting in the nursery. Afterwards, I couldn’t get back up on my own. I was just so drained. I told my husband and he suggested that I needed some pampering and went to run me a bath.
As I watched the tub fulling, I decided to go all out. I put a reviving mask on my hair and a clay mask on my face. I grabbed a fun bath bomb and dumped a bunch of Epson salt into the hot water. Then I lit some lavender candles and set up Emily’s tablet so I could watch a show that wouldn’t require much thought. When I finally sank into the water, it felt WONDERFUL. I could literally feel the tension leaving my body. The cherry on top? My husband brought in a nice glass of cold water and a bowl of freshly cut up fruit for me to enjoy too. (Then he went downstairs to relax himself by playing video games, leaving me to enjoy myself.)
I stayed in that tub for over an hour, occasionally adding more hot water and letting all of my worries and aches fade away. Eventually I realized I was so pruney that I starting to look more raisin than human and that’s when I finally called it quits on bath time.
The pampering continued though.
I put on my comfiest sweatpants and slipper socks, got us two big bowls of ice cream and settled onto the couch to watch a movie with my husband. We got a fire going, he rubbed my back, and then we talked and laughed well into the night. We were both in such good moods; I really think a big part of that was because we took that time to let ourselves relax in our own ways. Rather than stressing about everything we still have to get done before this new baby gets here, we were able to enjoy ourselves and reconnect which is so important for not only our mental health, but for our relationship. And then we were able to get right back to work this morning, feeling motivated and encouraged rather than stressed about it.
Do something to relax today!
I know we all have a lot going on and finding time to unwind can be tricky, but I really think it’s necessary. Taking that break to spend time doing something for you can be the difference between being happy or burning out. If you never take the time to relax and enjoy the good things, what’s the point in working so hard? Take this as your sign: if it’s been a while since you’ve enjoyed some pampering, go enjoy yourself! You won’t regret it.