If you have been hearing the buzz words “Self Care” coupled with the words “Personal Practice” as much as I have these days you may also find yourself asking the following; “Why would I and why should I start a personal practice?” furthermore “how do I do this? ” and “where do I start?” Finally “what do I do?”
I’m going to answer all of these questions .
Let’s start with the “Why”. For one: We are living in an fast paced world, we are bombarded and processing information faster than ever and demands upon each household member are high. This increases your bodies levels of the harmful stress hormone, cortisol. As a culture we are existing in a state of ( a deactivated vagus nerve) fight or flight. Many of you have to sustain 4 or 5 jobs, projects and side hobbies that make you a little extra cash in order to simply survive in the areas you have chosen to live. If you live in a small Northern California town, like me, you likely believe I’m talking specifically about you. Partly I am ; of course yes, I am right there with you…but SO many, in so many areas of our country are experiencing this same phenomenon. And the stress of this pressure is literally killing us. Many are trying to raise healthy children on top of all of the other pressures. Self care practices can feel like a joke. A luxury! & who has time for that?
Here’s were we get into my 5 (among many) favorite benefits and an invitation to think outside the Personal Practice box. Something that can get us held up or held back, is believing our practice has to look a certain way & be a certain thing. My approach is to carve out just 20 minutes a day for yourself. Perhaps you can set your alarm to rise 30 minutes earlier than you usually do: 10 minutes to make a cup of tea and 20 minutes for your practices. It can be that simple. It’s a start and can lead into longer stretches of time. I suggest yoga , meditation , breathing , journaling and hydrating as a start, but you can do anything that feels nourishing to you! I love to wake up before the light comes and just sit with a cup of tea by candle light, it is my simplest self care practice. I can provide you with further guidance should you feel the need for personalized instruction. All of the above practices can lift and support the following:
-Increased productivity through out your day.
-Increased patience with frustrating situations.
-Greater energy reserves and greater energy through out the day.
-Increased release of metabolic waste.
My conclusion : Essentially … a regular, consistently-shown-up-for practice starts to give back rewards that are uplifting, life affirming and positive. You will see things start to unfold that you may have previously thought were impossible. Doubtful? well there is one way to prove or disprove my case here. Ready to start? Let’s do this.
Next lets talk about the “How?” Beginning with an intention: “I want to heal past hurts, I want more energy throughout my days, I want to help my body and my inner organs to work more succinctly, I want to be more happy, I want to increase my productivity through out my days! I want to help my digestive system!” That is a start & they most certainly can lead to other great things. Then, I suggest creating a little altar around this intention. Think outside the box, it does not have to be anything fancy, it could be a rock on a shelf, next to a candle. At times just the act of clearing off a (possibly previously cluttered) space can be powerful in that it gets the ball rolling and positive changes in all areas of your life begin to unfold. Next clear a space that is all yours for your practice. If mornings are good for you , (as I mentioned above) set your alarm 30 minutes earlier & roll out! I have long long lists of self care personal practices and you can access more of them here. For now I am keeping it as simple as possible.
Finding the right practice & “what do I do?” There are billions of short sequences on YouTube and other platforms you may choose to follow. Once you have set your intention and then rolled out, take the next step and choose a practice that you can do at any time of day. You can also start just by closing your eyes, and breathing in and out for 5 breaths, side stretches sitting up or laying back and stretching your legs. Also taking parts and pieces from your group classes, writing them down in class or asking your instructor if you can record him/her. I have people do this with me often. Find a workshop that provides guidance in establishing a strong personal practice. Eventually it becomes a daily nonnegotiable & then the practice starts giving back to you. The rewards are great & many!
Finally “where do we start?” I have to say, start with you! Believe me; You are worth it! Ask for help. You have been working very hard achieving, killing’ it through long lists of things to do and helping others and offering and giving and providing so much to your immediate family and both local and global communities. You deserve a break! Take one daily 20 minute medicinal moment just for you to connect to you, to connect to your breath & to your bodie’s tightened or imbalanced places. Save your life in this beautiful way. A daily introspective practice helps us with inner awareness (interoception) and with finding out just where we’re at, where we have been and where we need to go. Our fast pace is not helping us to be aware of these areas. It’s productive and badass to slow down. #slowisthenewstrong #simpleisthenewadvanced. If you are at a crossroads and ready to start fresh… perhaps this letter was intended just for you! Enjoy and please let me know if I can support you on your journey. I teach several YOGA CLASSES a week that you can choose from & I provide one on one COACHING in which we can design your perfect morning, afternoon or evening routine to get you back on track.
On behalf of revitalizing your lifestyle, healing your body & your relationship to yourself & To your optimal health! Delphine & Dew Drop Wellness