Hands up, who wants to go on a health and wellness retreat somewhere warm and sunny? Yep, me too, but as beneficial as this would be for my wellbeing, it would not do my bank balance any favours.
Although I am a big fan of the mantra 'treat yourself', looking after your wellbeing can seem like an expensive habit. In fact, the UK health and beauty industry is set to be worth £26.7 billion by 2022, so it's not surprising we are more often associating self-care with spending money.
But it doesn't have to be this way. Changing the way you think about self-care means you don't have to spend a small fortune achieving it.
Of course, we all like spa days and getting our hair done, but don't let your finances stand in the way of your self-love. Rather than think about how much it would cost to have your perfect self-care day, invest a little time each day to connect inward or get the right tools for relaxing at home.
Self-care comes in many different forms. A daily meditation practice can make a massive difference to your mind, mood and health. Nourishing yourself with healthy foods and positive thoughts is part of it too. Praise your body for the beautiful things it does for you, and be kind to yourself when you look in the mirror.
2021 is the year to focus on you but in a kind, loving and forgiving way. This is where self-care comes in. So much more than splashing out on an expensive spa day or spending hours in the bathroom, authentic self-care is as quick and simple as brushing your teeth.
Having a self-care practise is about showing up for yourself, giving yourself that dedicated time in the day, and doing it consistently.
For example, you could …
Make a list of what you are grateful for. Really allow those feelings of gratitude and warmth to reach your mind and body. You can do this while sipping your morning cup of tea so that it won't take up time in your day.
Listen to relaxing music and meditate. Focus on your breath and yourself. Do a quick body scan to see how your body feels, and use your breath to release any tension you might be holding.
Create space in your home where you can light some candles. In the morning, light up your area, and take some time to write in a journal. Let your words flow with a stream of conscious energy, not worrying about spelling or grammar. I love the scents of grounding bergamot and relaxing patchouli organic essential oils in the Neal's Yard Balancing Aromatherapy Candle.
Get your DIY hat on and make some homemade natural face masks. Mix together a few tablespoons of plain yoghurt, two tablespoons of honey and one banana for a moisturising treat. If making your own sounds too messy, then try the Reviving White Tea Face Mask with antioxidant-rich white tea to help counteract the effects of pollutants and detoxifying kaolin clay to draw out impurities as a weekly treat for skin that feels cleansed and revived.
Create a sanctuary in your bathroom with candles and oils, and take a relaxing bath with some music that inspires you. The Aromatic Foaming Bath is a tranquil aromatherapy blend of lavender, Spanish marjoram and geranium essential oils, which help you relax and unwind.
New Gua Sha Tools
Based on ancient Chinese traditions, you can achieve instant results with long-term benefits using simple tools and techniques. So what will it be? Gua sha. Pai sha (body tapping) or body combing, and what tools will you need to give yourself a daily dose of Self-Care?
Face gua sha – The Beauty Restorer in Jade or Rose Quartz is a great all-rounder for face gua sha, while Rose Quartz is perfect for sensitive skin and helps to soothe stressed and tired skin, gua sha face massage tools will boost circulation and lymphatic drainage, lift, plump and sculpt skin, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Body gua sha – The Body Restorer is the perfect body gua sha tool to relieve tight and tired muscles for instant recovery. The must-have gua sha tool if you're starting any new fitness regime now things are beginning to open up.
Pai sha – If you need an energy boost, the Bamboo Body Tapper is the tool for you. Body tapping will increase energy levels in just one minute, and you'll wonder how you ever lived without it.
Body Combing – Hailed as the new body brushing, the Jade Body Comb helps combat cellulite, heavy legs, bingo wings and 'chicken skin'. Use the body comb daily in the shower, and you'll notice a marked difference within a few weeks.
To discover more about this lovely self-care ritual, find your favourite Gua Sha tools and get started, click here. It takes 21 days to break a habit and just one minute to gain a new one. And don't worry if you haven't started yet. The beauty of self-care is that not only is it pleasurable with instant results, but you can carry it on through the rest of 2021 and beyond.
"With every act of self-care, your authentic self gets stronger, and the erratic fearful mind gets weaker. Every act of self-care is a powerful declaration: I am on my side, each day I am more and more on my own side" - Susan Weiss Berry.