Self-Care Habits to Allow Your Best You to Shine in 2020
With 2020 now upon us, and as we move into a brand new decade, we are doing so with purpose and intention that continues our glow up as Upspoken women. To keep our energy up for the all the successes ahead, as well as the bumps that may come our way, we’re serving up a fresh reminder of some ways to prioritize you this year.
Over the past decade being able to say how busy and tired you are has managed to become this weird sort of flex, that has pushed us to work harder, do more with friends and rarely take a moment to simply…breathe. This has led to a country of sleep-starved people with one in three people not getting enough sleep. Unfortunately, depriving ourselves of sleep can lead to all sorts of problems including illness, memory problems, weight gain, mood changes, acne, and decreased sex drive. So, this year we’re saying NO to tired eyes that show our busy lifestyles and YES to a well-rested glow that enables clear minds, healthy bodies and the energy to show up as the bosses we know we are.
Mindfulness sounds like some new age trend to come straight out of Gwyneth Paltrow’s world of Goop, but unlike vaginal steaming, it’s actually supported by research. Mindfulness is the practice of being completely present and aware of your thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations and surrounding environment and viewing them with curiosity rather than judgement. Viewing our thoughts with curiosity allows us to release the baggage of the past and move with purpose into the future. We live in a world that doesn’t see us as we are, too often judging and misjudging us. Instead of constantly pushing ourselves to think and do the so-called right things, let’s give ourselves a compassionate break through the practice of mindfulness.
Treat Yo’ Self
Black women are so often in the position of caring for others that we forget we cannot fill others from an empty well. So, when you’re feeling a little low, treat yourself to something that’s just for you. It doesn’t need to be fancy or expensive, just something that sparks joy.
Put Down Your Phone
The average US adult spends almost 4 hours looking at their phones. We know that magical device that can deliver any fact in seconds and provide endless hours of fun and games can feel irresistible, but it’s time to Put. The. Phone. Down. Sis. The more time we spend on our phones, the less time we spend being present with ourselves and the people in our lives we love. Furthermore, prolonged use of mobile phones has been found to be correlated with headaches, decreased attention, sleep disorders and even depression. So, instead of picking up your phone, pick up a book, go to a museum, take a walk with a friend or just breathe. And let the connections happen in real life.
Get into Your Comfort Zone
Sometimes it’s just time to throw on your comfiest pajamas and act like a shut-in while binging every season of Love and Hip Hop. In this time of over-worked and over-planned, be unafraid. Be bold. And do nothing.
Try Something New
Self-care is not just about making yourself feel good. It can also be about pushing yourself to grow. When you feel stuck, try something new that pushes you outside of your comfort zone. That can be something as simple as ordering something new at your favorite restaurant, doing something more adventurous like going sky diving or taking the leap to talk to a therapist for the first time. Whatever it is, be present throughout the journey, and you can’t go wrong.
When we say yes to every request coming from the outside, we have no room to say yes to ourselves. In 2020, let’s be unafraid of saying no. No to that extra drink that we know will kill our morning workout. No to habits that put our mental and physical health at risk. No to bad sex. No to relationships that are more about drama than peace. No to experiences that don’t aid in the glow up Black women so richly deserve. No may feel like a dirty word at first, but once you start to use it more, it will feel oh so right.
Create a Judgment-Free Space Just for You
We are often our harshest critics when we need to be our biggest champions. This year, create a judgment-free space that is absent of criticism to your looks, your weight, your intelligence and where you may be on your journey. When you step into that space commit to being mindful; giving yourself big-ups for your successes, big and small; and to focusing on solutions to create more wins in the future because you…you know you got this.