Thursday, April 21, 2011

In the Lap of Luxury

“It is impossible to overdo luxury”  -French Proverb

For some reason most of the quotes that I referenced online for "pampering" and "indulgence" were quite negative.   There seems to be this mindset that treating yourself special can -over long periods of time -make you a heartless person. 

We have all heard it said that we should guard ourselves against excess,"everything in moderation", and "too much of good thing..." can be a bad thing.  Obviously, you won't be able to supply anything useful to the world or anyone else if you spend all your time at the day spa...and what will you appreciate if you get everything you wish for?

I think that I am going to side with the French on this one..."it is impossible to overdo luxury"

Unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth and are not a nice person to begin with...(and I would wager neither is true!)... I am absolutely confident you will not find your heart growing icicles if you suddenly start getting regular pedicures, buying yourself flowers and boxes of chocolat tied with a bow, eating at fine restaurants or traveling to tropical locations. 

If you are like most women, indulging yourself is often relegated to last place. You may not think you deserve it.   You many not think that it is necessary.    And, quite frankly, you may not think you have time for it, because...let's face it...your life is occupied and exhausted by other priorities... running your home, meeting the needs of your family and coping with the demands of your work.   Many of us do not practice any moderation when it comes to these priorities.   We don't allow ourselves even the tiniest amount of wiggle room to recharge our batteries and nurture our own souls. 

The goal of Self Care Girl is to encourage you to incorporate luxuries and self-care time into your busy lives in big and small ways. 

If the idea of indulging yourself feels "selfish" and incites guilt within in you, keep in mind  that by adding these little (and big) luxuries to your life -by practicing self -love and self-nurturing - you will become a better, stronger, more compassionate person.  Self care is one way to equip yourself with more patience, more resilience and more love which- in the long run- only serves to benefit the people around you. 

Luxuries and indulgences do not have to be expensive.  Here are a few things you can do that cost nothing or very little:

1) Journal - at the end of each day, take 20 minutes to write down your feelings and thoughts.  Getting stuff out of your head and onto paper or blog spot is therapeutic.

2) Bubble baths - Put a do not disturb sign on the bathroom door and take a soak.  Adding fragrant bubbles, a handful of flower petals, candles and/or music can turn a weekly soak in to a fabulous spa night

3) Practice Yoga - or just spend a few minutes after you wake up, or before retiring for the night doing some gentle stretches and breathing.
4) Buy yourself a bouquet of flowers

5) Keep a hidden chocolate stash

6) Clear a personal space in your home that is just for you.   A corner of your bedroom will do fine.  Hijack a cozy chair and small table and then surround yourself with a few items that comfort you.  Try to incorporate something that engages each of your senses

7) Be mindful and present in whatever you are doing.   Appreciate the beauty around you.

8) Meditate

9) Develop a daily self care routine.  I do mine before going to bed.  This can be 10 minutes of cleansing and moisturizing your face each evening or simply 20 minutes of reading and a cup of tea.

10) Accentuate.   When I was a broke and struggling single mom, one surprising little indulgence I found was pillow cases.   I would treat myself to a new set of pretty pillowcases for my bed.   These often cost me less than $5 at Ross and they added just the right amount of fresh change to my personal space.   A small thing can sometimes make a huge impact.

Take Good Care!

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