often tell my clients, student's and share on social media, you have to take care of you, and fill your own cup before you can help others. We can't offer others anything if our cups are empty, and we are depleted.
The month of October had me down hard with a Strep Infection and for anyone with autoimmune issues, infections can take a long time to recover from and for me and I am just now starting to catch my breath. It's been a long long six weeks.
So in taking some of my own advice, I have had shut down my personal 1:1 booking calendar and most classes and workshops for the time being and appointment for Reiki Sessions will be back opening up on November 13th - I have added an online booking option for you if you choose here: https://www.essentialenergyhealing.ca/book-online
I chose to share with you, some of the personal blessings that I have had this month even though I was down for the count physically. I encourage each and every one of you, no matter how hectic life gets or what we may get hit with to count your blessings, practice gratitude and take time for YOU, for even the smallest things and watch the good multiply.
The practise of extreme self-care was initiated. This means lots of rest, hydration, epsom salt baths, meditation time, grounding the physical body and self-reiki healing. Daily. Once I was actually able to eat, it was soups and smoothies for a week and now I'm back onto solid foods, which is settling is good. Finally. It was rough and I lost about 5 days with high fever/infection but my big gratitude was that my husband was home when I took a nose dive. I am extremely grateful to him and all he does for me when he can. He was my caregiver, my driver, my personal shopper and worrier. He is an amazing man and I am blessed he is in my life.
When we feel and express gratitude, we honor, emanate, and magnetize it.
We find ourselves again approaching the holiday season, with its many joys and challenges. The beauty and nostalgia are undeniable, but it can also bring financial burden, interpersonal conflict, and feelings of loneliness. This time of year can make us feel like we’re falling short of an ideal where our families are perfect, our health is glowing, and our social calendar is bursting with invitations. It’s a lot of pressure!
I wanted to take things in a different direction here and give you something to work with that will not only ease some stress but help you to feel good. In my classes, I’m preparing to delve into the juiciness that is GRATITUDE. It’s not just for Thanksgiving or inspirational memes on Instagram and FB!
Making the practice of gratitude part of your life can create lasting changes that not only rewire your brain but open your heart to more love, connection, and personal wellness.
1) Improved health and wellness
Gratitude is a growing area of study in medical research. Many of these studies show that the practice of gratitude stimulates important regions of our brains – So gratitude is not just an attitude, but behavior that results in chemical changes in your brain, which then colors your outlook about yourself and the world around you.
Much of this research shows that people who practice gratitude experience fewer aches and pains and report that they generally feel good. They are also more likely to attend regular checkups and make changes to their diet and fitness habits that support their overall wellness.
2) New friendships & acquaintances
Showing appreciation daily not only supports emotional and physical wellness but can attract new friendships and other connections. Saying “thank you” when someone holds the door open for you, showing recognition to a co-worker who helps you complete a task, or being kind to waitstaff at a restaurant is noticed by others, who are more likely to want to get to know you better. How many of us prefer the company of a warm and kind person to one who is complaining and inconsiderate? Gratitude also increases our empathy “muscles,” helping us to be more aware of and sensitive to the perspectives of others when conflict arises, and apt to seek peaceful resolution instead of retaliation. All this makes you the kind of person that others want to be around!
I've met many new acquaintances while I'm out and about on the walking trails! I make a point of saying Hi to everyone I come across and being polite. This has resulted in getting to know many that I would not otherwise have met.
3) Finding the good stuff that’s already there
It may seem strange, but so much of the time, happiness scares the shit out of us.
The new relationship that’s so blissful, that fabulous raise or promotion at work, the continued health and success of a growing family – underneath our feelings of joy and thankfulness can often lurk a sharp pang of fear.
We wonder how long the good times will last, or “when the other shoe will drop.” We can develop a habit of mentally preparing ourselves for disaster that, over time, dulls our capacity for joy and keeps us anxious, stressed, and emotionally walled up.
Gratitude keeps you from drifting into past regrets or future worry by grounding you in the present with awareness and appreciation. The more you choose to look for things to be thankful for, the more you will find to appreciate. Gratitude is an action, a skill, and a lifelong practice. The more effort you put into it, the better you’ll get at it, and the easier and more enjoyable it’ll become!
Self-Care Secrets - Ways to begin your self-care practise
I talk a lot about self-care. To me, self-love equals self-care, and self-care equals self-love. The two are so intimately connected that they fall into each other.
When you’re taking care with yourself, you are showing yourself love. When you show yourself love, you are taking care with yourself.
But there was a time long ago where self-care was a foreign concept, where it sounded like something cool and fun, but also like something I had no idea how to start.
The thought of creating a practice was too big, because I wasn’t sure what it meant, I didn’t know how to start.
So, let me help you start.
What I need to tell you is this: A self-care practice is simply a group of things you do that feel good to you, that recharge your body, heart and soul.
It’s something you can lean on when you have a rough day. It’s something that, the more you do, the more intuitive it becomes: to comfort yourself, to love yourself, to take care with yourself, to honor yourself.
Your practice can take so many different shapes and forms, and they are all right, they are all perfect.
I want to share some jumping off points with you, some places where you can begin.
Because beginnings are often the hardest part, the most challenging point, just to get to a space where you say Yes, I’m ready, yes I can do this, yes, I want to do this.
Ways to Begin your Self-care Practice
1. Take a five-minute break, wherever you are, close the door, close your eyes, breathe deeply and relax. You deserve this.
2. Make a mug of tea, treat yourself to your favorite latte or smoothie. Delight your senses with taste and flavors.
3. Move your body – dance, go for a walk or run, do yoga/pilates or some deep stretching, heck even skip around your house. Twirl, hula hoop, do the running (wo)man, jump up and down like a human pogo stick – whatever feels good to your body in this moment.
4. Turn off the computer, unplug for an hour or for a day to see how it feels.
5. Hug your child or your partner or your best friend or your kitten.
6. Say thank you. And say thank you again. Then say it again.
7. Breathe deep and smile.
8. Go outside and feel the sunshine on your face or let the raindrops kiss your cheeks. Enjoy the sparkles of freshly fallen snow.
9. Explore essential oils they can be used so many different ways, they’ve become a fixture in my self-care practice.
10. Light your favorite candle or burn a stick of incense – make the space you are in sacred.
11. Walk around barefoot, completely connect to the ground beneath you.
12. Give yourself an at-home spa day: Take a nice epsom salt bath, light some candles and put on a mud mask.
13. Go to sleep early, let yourself rest. Or, take a catnap – closing your eyes for a half hour can do so much for attitude and outlook.
14. Write a letter to your younger self and celebrate how much you’ve done and how far you’ve come.
15. Take yourself out to dinner. Dress up or down.
16. Put on your favorite cozy pants and top and s