You’ve heard the term “it takes a village”, right? While self-acceptance, self-love, and ultimately self-care are crafted from within, we sometimes need a little help. A BIG self-care win is acknowledging the necessity of the right external resources. I use the term “curate” with the utmost intention as mindfully crafting your soul-gang is crucial to your success and happiness. Finding the right players for your team can be a lot like dating. It may take a few attempts before finding the right fit, but you are too incredible to settle for anything less. These are the people you can be the most vulnerable with and who honor your well-being. Today, I am sharing what my team looks like.
We often associate therapy with being lost or at our weakest, but therapy plays a bigger part in our self-care. Yes, therapy is amazing for working through singular hardships or issues, but it’s even better as part of maintaining your emotional eco-system. Our society encourages therapy to be categorized as a private matter you don’t speak about, which leads to shame and feelings of inadequacy for needing help. With the right therapist, you have an objective resource who will help you excavate the bullshit, digging deeper to your core to heal self-limiting beliefs and rewrite narratives we have downloaded to become our identity. A therapy session is a safe space to feel guiltless in your sharing with the undivided attention of someone who knows what the fuck they’re talking about. Sometimes I see my therapist once a week. Sometimes I see her once a month. From her guidance, I am now able to tap into when I need a little more help in working through what’s happening in my life - the good and the ugly.
What’s your passion? Who do you admire that is seemingly living your dream? Mentors are an amazing resource as an example of what goes into creating your happiness and fulfillment. We often feel as if we need to do it all on our own to be truly successful. For it to be authentic. However, these are the people that inspire you and can be wonderful role models to emulate. If you want to be like someone because you respect the shit out of them, adopting their tried and true’s into your own life can help you to become YOUR version of what you admire about them. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, so don’t be afraid to ask for some of their time to ask how they got to where they are, what worked and didn’t, so on and so forth. Keep in mind that all humans are flawed and by no means perfect, but watching those who help ignite your soul in a positive way are worth fangirling over!
These are the soul-magicians that help provide relief, balance, and can tap into the deepest nooks and crannies to help you feel in harmony and aligned within yourself. As living beings, we have constant energy flowing through and around us. Reiki practitioners, acupuncturists, shamans, intuitives, and massage therapists (to name a few!) help to rid your being of stale, stagnant energy and replace it with vibrant, fresh energy to elevate your life experience. Healers also can assist in finding the right way for you to tune inward and work with yourself to recognize your needs, how to rid toxic energy from your life, and how to keep those good vibes rollin’ in the face of anything. There is often so much going on within our own selves and healers aid in tapping into that energy source. In an age where we are accustom to modern medicine and are endlessly seeking a magic pill, healers have the ability to help mend you from the inside out. Ancient techniques, philosophies, and crafts bring a more grounding approach to clearing out the clutter. This is one part of your squad that often gets left behind because it is often viewed as a luxury. Massage is a part my self-care, and I used to feel really guilty about it. I would find myself justifying and apologizing why. I get a monthly massage to help with my chronic body pain, but I also do it because it feels fucking awesome and I connect deeply to myself as I release deep-rooted congestion. You wouldn’t not go get your oil changed right? Why neglect your own energy field?
Who are your people? Are they in your inner circle because they unconditionally love and support you? Do they value and respect your time and dreams? Do they encourage, challenge, celebrate, and uplift you? Do you feel energized or a greater sense of peace when around them? Do you feel seen, understood, and recognized? Do you basically feel just SO. FREAKIN. GOOD. in their presence? If you said no to any of those questions...honey, those ain’t yo people! A huge part of self-care is aligning yourself with people who not only want to see you shine, but lift you up and polish the shit out of you so the whole world can see it. These are the people that hold space for you at your highest and lowest. We spend a great deal of time investing in people who don’t meet us halfway and don’t believe in our dreams. They don’t want to read our story. The right people in your life will support you even when they don’t understand you. That’s what a posse is all about.
The Esthetician/Hair Stylist/Person who makes you feel fly AF
These folks for SURE deserve a place when curating your team! A big part of self-care is taking care of your hot bod and treating it like the GD temple it is. Find someone who you look forward to seeing and who listens to what makes you feel beautiful and genuine in your own skin. Beauty is nothing to feel vain or selfish over. We are all entitled to spend time, energy, and money on “adorning our temples” as Ashley Sterns of Blush puts it. If you are sitting there filling in the blank of “I’m not _____ enough for that”, I want you to know you are so damn incredible and deserve to feel beautiful. Whether it’s getting a manicure or a random blowout - you do you, Boo.
Who do you want on your team and who doesn’t make the band? Please know you are entitled to an entourage who sees how magnificent you truly are. Hold these people close and let them know how appreciated they are. Life isn’t always easy to maneuver, and you don’t have to do it alone. Cheers to you and your peeps!
It may seem surface-level + stupid obvious, but listen up. In a lot of my conversations surrounding beauty and pampering, women feel guilty about their regimen. There can be a negative association with it of high-maintenance, vanity, “basic”...all which contribute to shaming a woman’s sense of allowing herself to be treated like a Queen.
First off, don’t feel badly about the money you spend on self-care in terms of beauty. So long as you budget it, creating opportunities to de-stress and honor your body are a mother bleeping INVESTMENT in your well-being. Aside from the fact that regular massage, facials, pedicures, [insert your pamper de choix] are a fantastic part of wellness - it helps strengthen your self-love and sense of worth.
You don’t need to go to a spa, either! Shopping for this stuff is beyond exciting. I’ve spent over an hour in @janegee picking out a bath bomb. Nothing beats a good masque (I’m fancy AF with my spelling). They are so fun and inexpensive to make, and there are a ton of great ones to buy. Bring the spa to you, m’lady. Smear that masque all over your life, light a candle or 47, and bliss out to a guided meditation (or watch Friends).
Amp up your day-to-day routine. Drink seltzer with a lime twist out of a champagne flute. Make your bedroom an oasis with turn down (self) service, start your humidifier, and spray an essential oil mist on your pillows. Creatively plate and style your food. These are simple and require little extra effort. Start your car to heat it up a bit so you enjoy your commute more. Put on some music and fire up the essential oil diffuser while you make dinner or meal prep. Sprinkle a favorite oil blend in your shower to enhance the experience. Anything you feel like doing to upgrade your normal.
Make skincare and general hygiene a ritual. These are also small things that make a huge impact. Take time washing your hair, massaging your scalp and neck. In fact, do this when washing your face, putting on oil/lotion, brushing your teeth, combing your hair...do it with intention. You’re body is beautiful - let it know! Try massaging oil into your legs while you thank them for all they do and tell them how much you love them. I’m dead serious - you’ll feel amazing.
Pampering is an opportunity to slow down and connect with yourself, bringing a little more gentle compassion to the nooks and crannies of your Self that need a little more love. Especially if you have a hard time doing things for yourself, pampering is a great way to start building new habits and self-care routines. It creates the standard of how you are to be treated and strengthens your intuition. It’ll help redefine your body image and spark a deeper friendship with yourself, influencing you to WANT to make the investment in yourself deeper than your (flawless) skin.
Self-Care is on the rise, but in its popularity it may be more confusing than ever to navigate your own definition. You see people sharing their “self-care” in contradicting forms from eating McDonalds in bed to slapping on a face mask and drinking kombucha. Though the term is trending and possibly misunderstood, self-care has never been more personal. Self-Care is, after all, Self-Love.
Self-Care can be hard, man. At least in the deepest sense of it all. Self-Care is boundary-setting, gut-honoring, and beautifully selfish. It’s knowing your needs and acknowledging your Self. It is securing your own oxygen mask first, honoring yourself as the priority. As my friend @micaylaajean put it: “It’s easy to post a photo of your crystals, sage and relaxing tea, but the work that goes below the surface takes time, dedication and saying “no” a lot to some of the most recognizable and easy connections.” Self-Care is putting in the work.
Self-Care is also standing in your power and being your own healer. Harnessing your intuition and feeding your body and soul with whole, real things. Cutting out the toxins and additives by way of food, people, and anything you give your mindless attention to. It replaces self-deprecation, self-loathing, and stands way up to self-sabotage. It’s how to live wild and free
Self-Care is also doing whatever the fuck you want, so long as it is with kindness, honesty, and respect. Whether you need to release stress, go inward, pump adrenaline, strengthen boundaries - it’s all valid. If eating that Big Mac in bed is what you need - do it. If you want to learn to play the guitar - do it. If you need to shut your phone off all day and sit in your tub singing Gloria Estefan songs - you do you. Regardless of how close or deep to the surface.
Stay tuned for the Self-Care Series: Living Wild & Free!