Ever feel like time runs away from you and you can’t seem to find time to prioritise you in the day? We feel you - it’s not always easy to carve out that space for self-care when you have a million and one other things on your mind and to-do list.
Let’s be real - while we are capable of doing a lot, we are not able to do everything all in one go. We’re human, and we need to start treating ourselves like them instead of machines.
It may be tempting to want to go to all those yoga classes, hit the gym, meditate for hours, drink all of those almond milk matcha lattes, and get a monthly facial or massage, but are they all realistically going to fit into your routine in a way that won’t stress you out?
Here’s how to incorporate your self-care rituals into your lifestyle in a way that is realistic.
BE HONEST WITH WHAT YOU CAN DO
When we try to convince ourselves that you can do absolutely everything by saying ‘we all have the same 24hrs as Beyonce’, we are unwittingly setting ourselves up for disappointment. Yes, we all live by the same chronological time, but I think we can pretty much guarantee not all of us have a fleet of staff to do the cooking, cleaning, manage our schedules, drive us around etc. (no disrespect to Queen Bey!)
We need to be more realistic about how much time we have in our day to dedicate to our self care rituals. While it might be nice to have hours to ourselves each day, for most of us this just isn’t the case when we have work, families and other aspects of our lives to manage.
Instead of beating yourself up about not having heaps of time, try finding a few moments of calm at the start and end of the day. This could even be while you’re doing your skincare routine - instead of rushing through it, try to slow it right down, enjoy the different steps and allow yourself to breathe deeply.
START WITH ONE, AND BUILD FROM THERE
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither can a ‘perfectly’ balanced routine. If we try and put everything into our lifestyle all in one go, it’s going to get overwhelming and chances are some of those wonderful rituals will end up becoming chores. That’s not what we want from practices that are supposed to be enjoyable and calming.
So start with one ritual you’d like to bring into your life, and take it from there. A great place to begin is using an already existing routine and transforming it into a mindful practice. This could be making your coffee in the morning - instead of whacking the coffee in your cafetiere, brewing it as quickly as you can, pouring it into your cup before you dash out the door, think about slowing the process down. Gently stir the water, appreciate the smell of the coffee as it begins to brew, allow it to sit for a little longer to develop more flavour.
The same thing can be applied to when you do your skincare routine - rather than hastily rubbing in creams and serums into your skin, give yourself a few extra minutes to appreciate the textures, the scent and the feeling of your fingertips gently massaging the product in.
BE OPEN TO ADAPT
Things change at the best of times, and right now we’re living in a rather uncertain period where nothing is really for certain. This goes for our schedules too - you may find that you have a bit more time now if you’re still working from home, but things might get busier if you go back to the office.
Rather than expecting our rituals to fit into absolutely any schedule we may have, we need to be more flexible and be able to adapt as circumstances change. This is where it’s good to determine what your non-negotiables are, and what you’re willing to put to the side if there is limited time.
Knowing that your rituals don’t have to be static or set in stone is really liberating, and being able to adapt is powerful. So lets start prioritising our non-negotiables, and just go with the flow.