In the (slightly misconstrued) words of the Beiber, baby, you should go and love yourself. Valentine’s Day is all about appreciating our nearest and dearest, but sometimes we forget that a little bit of personal TLC time is good for the soul too (and if you’re feeling kind, invite your Valentine along with you).
It can also be quite difficult to achieve in our busy lives overwhelmed with distractions, demands and diverting notifications, but it is possible. Even for just 20 minutes. These are a few of my favourite things to chill out when life is getting stressy.
I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath / Scared to rock the boat and make a mess
So I sat quietly, agreed politely / I guess that I forgot I had a choice
I let you push me past the breaking point / I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything
Half an hour after working the Google magic on early evening, I was having my woes kneaded out of my tense shoulders by a woman with magic fingers. She worked out the knots of stress, made progress on years of blogger’s shoulder and gave me a little therapy session whilst she chilled me down almost to taking a nap. It was good. So gooooooooooooooooood.
List out your best attributes
Pull out a cute notepad, write out at least a half a dozen of your best qualities and pin it somewhere you’ll see it everyday. Better yet, ask a couple of your BFFs to write some for you – they might pleasantly surprise you.
You held me down, but I got up / Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, your hear that sound / Like thunder, gonna shake your ground
You held me down, but I got up / Get ready ’cause I’ve had enough
I see it all, I see it now
I’ve tried meditation a few times in the past, and calming down my chi lasted all of about 3 seconds. I’ve always been a proper fidgeter who can’t sit still (than goodness for the invention of social media) but fairly recently a friend and I tried out an evening of meditating. After a spot of dinner with a glass of wine, we were taken through an hour and a half of errant thought clearing and we both left with enormous smiles. Whilst I’m not utterly convinced of the medical phenomena claimed or tie-dyed trousers, the realisation that I hadn’t even wriggled was a miracle alone.
Read a few of your favourite blogs snuggled in bed, pour a bubble bath or simply uncork that bottle of wine that has been kept for a ‘special occasion’. Call a friend to laugh with, have a marathon complaining sessions or take a pet for a walk.
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter
Dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am the champion, and you’re gonna hear me roar
Pull out your musical device of choice, load it with a selection of power tunes and turn up the volume as loud as the dial will go. Tom Cruise/Risky Business style socks and shirt completely optional.
Step 1: Take an evening and plan nothing. (I actually do this with entire days sometimes and call them PJ days in the diary.)
Step 2: That evening, kick everyone else out and get your ultimate treat in hand.
Step 3: Watch your favorite ridiculous TV show for 3 hours, slip in a comfy old favourite movie (I recommend anything with Whoopi Goldberg or Robin Hood Men In Tights) and snuggle.
Now I’m floating like a butterfly
Stinging like a bee I earned my stripes
I went from zero, to my own hero
This one is a little bit random.
Put a teaspoon in the left or right pocket of your trousers. Whenever you catch yourself thinking a negative thought, move it over to the other pocket. Do this without exception. Over time you will notice that you kick out the negative thought before it has a chance to be fully formulated in your mind. The first couple of days you will constantly have to move it back and forth between your pockets. After a month, sometimes less, it becomes a habit and you develop the reflex to dismiss negative thoughts, no sweat. If after a while they do creep back in, put the spoon back in your pocket and scoop them away.
What is your favorite relaxation technique?
PS. Get. Your. Mind. Out. Of. The. Gutter. This isn’t one of those blogs.