After a tough winter, a stressful holiday season, and then Valentine’s Day, you owe yourself a little TLC. This time of year can be especially taxing, and there’s no reason why you should avoid spoiling yourself for a moment. You deserve a quick respite from the grind, and we’re here to give it to you! Here are 5 quick ways (and a bonus way) that you can treat yourself right now:
1. Make a homemade face mask to pamper yourself.
There are tons of homemade face mask recipes out there, but I have 2 favorites. If you can hop over to the store (or if you happen to have lavender oil on hand), take a cue from Clones N’ Clowns and mix 2 tbsp plain greek yogurt, 1 tsp honey, and a few drops of lavender oil. You can put it on your face, neck, and even chest (which increases the aromatherapy aspect), and leave it for 10 minutes before rinsing with warm water and applying moisturizer.
Or, if lavender isn’t in the cards for you, try this simple mask recipe from Kinsey Mhire. Crush half a banana and mix until smooth before adding 2 tbsp honey and 1/2 tsp cinnamon. Apply to a freshly cleaned face and leave for 30 minutes (long enough for an episode of your favorite sitcom), rinsing and re-washing your face afterward. The cinnamon fights blemishes, the banana moisturizes dry skin, and the honey has a plethora of benefits which I talk about here.
2. Watch an episode of your favorite guilty pleasure show (mine is The Bachelor!) to take yourself to another place for a moment.
When we watch reality shows, something within us knows that it’s likely staged, dramatized, or altogether sad. But for a brief moment, it’s okay to let yourself get wrapped up into someone else’s drama, especially since it likely (hopefully) won’t add to the emotional weight you carry around. Drama for entertainment can be excessive, but for an hour, it’s perfectly okay in my book (and even encouraged!)
3. Forgive yourself for something you’ve been holing onto to ease the weight of the world you carry around.
We all can probably list off who has harmed us in the past and how we have forgiven and forgotten. But the people we often overlook in this pursuit is ourselves. We’re so quick to forgive those around us, but we have a hard time applying the same forgiveness inward. But if we do forgive ourselves, we can release so much weight that we’ve been unknowingly and unwillingly carrying around. Forgive yourself to improve your state of mind.
4. Call someone you miss to remind yourself how friendship and love span distance and time like nothing else.
As time goes on and people move on and around like they are prone to do, we lose touch. We overlook. We even sometimes forget. But that doesn’t change the feeling we get when we think about the important people in our lives — the people who have helped shape and form us throughout our days. Whether it’s your mom or your old mailman, call someone you miss who you haven’t talked to in a while. Ask them how they are doing and make them tell you the truth. Then do the same thing yourself.
5. Do a quick sun salutation to relax and help you breathe.
Yoga is an incredible stretching and posing exercise, but it’s also a great breathing practice. Breathing should come from the diaphragm instead of the chest, causing your belly to rise and fall, and you should breathe both in and out from your nose. Here’s a great sun salutation from YogaOutlet.com that anyone can do at home.
- Start with your feet shoulder width apart and firmly planted with your legs straight but not locked in what’s called mountain pose.
- Inhale as you stretch your arms upward and arch your back.
- Exhale as you fold forward, touching your toes or letting your arms dangle.
- Inhale as you send one foot back into a lunge. Make sure your front knee doesn’t travel further forward than your ankle.
- Exhale as you send your other foot back and come into a plank position. Either immediately lower yourself slowly to the floor or take a breath in between, but the exhale will help you sustain the lowering for longer, which is a very powerful part of the sun salutation.
- Inhale as you push your chest from the floor with your hands, arching your back and looking upward.
- Exhale as you push back into downward dog, where your body makes a triangle with the floor. It is more important that your back and arms make a straight line than your legs, since this is intended to open your chest and hips, but try to straighten your legs as much as possible and push your heels toward the floor.
- Inhale as you lift a leg and bring it forward to return to the lunge position. You should be lunging on the same side as before. Open your chest in this position.
- Exhale as you bring your other foot forward so that you’re touching your toes in forward fold again.
- Inhale as you slowly lift your torso with a flat back and return to a standing position, back arched and arms over your head.
- Exhale and return to mountain pose, your starting position.
- Repeat, using the other leg for lunges.
Bonus way to treat yourself: Fill out our annual consumer survey to be entered to win an amazing prize package, including a free cleaning, a Godiva gift card, and a SpaFinder gift card! Click here for the survey.
How do you treat yourself? Comment below to let us know!