Taking Care of YOU - Self-Love

We lead insanely busy lives. Every day we are trying to balance work, love, family, and our addiction to binge-watching terrible reality television.  Every one of those can deplete our energy, and lead us to a cycle of sleep deprivation, exhaustion, and stress. That is why I LOVE self-love. All of my clients get a healthy dose of self-love assignments, which focus on taking care of YOU! Similar to on an airplane, should anything go awry, you need to put the oxygen mask on yourself first, before helping anyone else. Self-love is like oxygen for the soul. The more you breathe in, the more energy you have for all the other amazing things life has to offer.

So what are some ways you can practice self-love this fall?

1. Create a seasonal bucket list - List 3-5 things you want to do this fall. Things that you don't have to or need to do, but activities that make you get all warm and fuzzy. Maybe it's going to see a Broadway show or pumpkin picking, or planning that ladies/guys night out that keeps getting mentioned and postponed. Write them down, and give yourself a timeline.

2. Meditation - Meditation is the secret to bliss. I'm completely serious. Getting in touch with your mind and breath, for even 5 minutes, is a huge dose of self-love. You don't have to move to an ashram or take a pilgrimage to India. You can meditate in your car, your bed, or your kitchen. There are a ton of free and low-cost apps that can guide you through some simple, but effective, mediations. My favorite right now is Simply Being. It has options for a 5, 10, 15, or 20-minute session, and it is 99 cents. If you aren't worth a buck, we have a lot more work to do than I can put in this post.

3. Learn to say NO - The magic word is no longer please, it is NO. Saying no is about prioritizing your time, and leaving room to breathe. When you say yes to everyone that needs your help, and ear, some money, or time, you take away that breathing room. No breathing room = suffocation.  Suffocation = BAD. You don't have to become a part of every organization, attend every event, or be your friend's therapist at 3 am. Boundaries are key to self-love. Oh and throw out the guilt, you taking care of you is more important than a disappointed friend.

4. Revamp your Rolodex - Speaking of friends... We don't use Rolodex's anymore, and there is a chance that many reading this will think I'm speaking Greek, but the lesson is the same. It is time to eliminate the negative people in your life. Those energy suckers that do nothing but complain? Yeah, they need to go.  The "friend" that always needs your help, but is never available when you are in need? Time to release. You don't have to break up with them per se, but limit the time and energy you give them. If they aren't bringing you up, they are holding you down. As Toni Morrison said, “You wanna fly, you got to give up the shit that weighs you down.”

5. Healthy habits - You don't need me to tell you that exercise is important, or maybe you do. The change of seasons is a great time to revamp your health habits, including hitting the gym (or the pavement) more regularly. Another great idea to expand your recipe library is to host a healthy potluck. Get 4-5 friends together and have everyone make their favorite healthy dish. Share some food, laugh (a lot), and learn how to make a new dish. It's a win-win. Send me pictures!

Can you commit to some self-love this week? YOU are so worth it!