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45 Simple Self-Care Practices for a Healthy Mind, Body & Soul

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45 Simple Self-Care Practices for a Healthy Mind, Body & Soul

“There are days I drop words of comfort on myself like falling leaves and remember that it is enough to be taken care of by myself.” ~Brian Andreas

Do you ever forget to take care of yourself?

I know. You’re busy, and finding the time to take proper care of yourself can be hard. But if you don’t, it won’t be long before you’re battered from exhaustion and operating in a mental fog where it’s hard to care about anything or anyone.

I should know.

A few years ago, I had a corporate job in London, working a regular sixty-hour week. I enjoyed working with my clients and colleagues, and I wanted to do well.

But I had no life.

I rarely took care of myself, and I was always focused on goals, achievements, and meeting the excessive expectations I had of myself. My high tolerance for discomfort meant I juggled all the balls I had in the air—but at the expense of being a well-rounded human being.

So I made an unusual choice. I quit my job and moved to Thailand to work in a freelance capacity across many different countries and companies, which enabled me to set my own hours and engagements.

I began to take care of myself better, scheduling in time alone, for exercise and for fun.

I got to know myself better and know what I needed—not just to function, but to flourish.

But guess what?

At the end of last year, I spent Christmas alone in bed, completely exhausted.

Why did this happen?

Well, I had been running my busy website and consulting in seven countries in just two months. I forgot to take care of myself again, and I got a nasty case of strep throat.

Self-Care Isn’t a One-Time Deal

The strep throat was a harsh reminder that self-care isn’t something you do once and tick off the list.

It’s the constant repetition of many tiny habits, which together soothe you and make sure you’re at your optimum—emotionally, physically, and mentally.

The best way to do this is to implement tiny self-care habits every day. To regularly include in your life a little bit of love and attention for your own body, mind, and soul.

The following ideas are tiny self-care activities you can fit into a short amount of time, usually with little cost.

Pick one from each category, and include them in your life this week.

Tiny Self-Care Ideas for the Mind

1. Start a compliments file. Document the great things people say about you to read later.

2. Scratch off a lurker on your to-do list, something that’s been there for ages and you’ll never do.

3. Change up the way you make decisions. Decide something with your heart if you usually use your head. Or if you tend to go with your heart, decide with your head.

4. Go cloud-watching. Lie on your back, relax, and watch the sky.

5. Take another route to work. Mixing up your routine in small ways creates new neural pathways in the brain to keep it healthy.

6. Pay complete attention to something you usually do on autopilot, perhaps brushing your teeth, driving, eating, or performing your morning routine.

7. Goof around for a bit. Schedule in five minutes of “play” (non-directed activity) several times throughout your day.

8. Create a deliberate habit, and routinize something small in your life by doing it in the same way each day—what you wear on Tuesdays, or picking up the dental floss before you brush.

9. Fix a small annoyance at home that’s been nagging you—a button lost, a drawer that’s stuck, a light bulb that’s gone.

10. Punctuate your day with a mini-meditation with one minute of awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and sensations; one minute of focused attention on breathing; and one minute of awareness of the body as a whole.

11. Be selfish. Do one thing today just because it makes you happy.

12. Do a mini-declutter. Recycle three things from your wardrobe that you don’t love or regularly wear.

13. Unplug for an hour. Switch everything to airplane mode and free yourself from the constant bings of social media and email.

14. Get out of your comfort zone, even if it’s just talking to a stranger at the bus stop.

15. Edit your social media feeds, and take out any negative people. You can just “mute” them; you don’t have to delete them. 

Tiny Self-Care Ideas for the Body

1. Give your body ten minutes of mindful attention. Use the body scan technique to check in with each part of your body.

2. Oxygenate by taking three deep breaths. Breathe into your abdomen, and let the air puff out your stomach and chest.

3. Get down and boogie. Put on your favorite upbeat record and shake your booty.

4. Stretch out the kinks. If you’re at work, you can always head to the bathroom to avoid strange looks.

5. Run (or walk, depending on your current physical health) for a few minutes. Or go up and down the stairs three times.

6. Narrow your food choices. Pick two healthy breakfasts, lunches, and dinners and rotate for the week.

7. Activate your self-soothing system. Stroke your own arm, or if that feels too weird, moisturize.

8. Get to know yourself intimately. Look lovingly and without judgment at yourself naked. (Use a mirror to make sure you get to know all of you!)

9. Make one small change to your diet for the week. Drink an extra glass of water each day, or have an extra portion of veggies each meal.

10. Give your body a treat. Pick something from your wardrobe that feels great next to your skin.

11. Be still. Sit somewhere green, and be quiet for a few minutes.

12. Get fifteen minutes of sun, especially if you’re in a cold climate. (Use sunscreen if appropriate.)

13. Inhale an upbeat smell. Try peppermint to suppress food cravings and boost mood and motivation.

14. Have a good laugh. Read a couple of comic strips that you enjoy. (For inspiration, try Calvin and Hobbes, Dilbert, or xkcd.)

15. Take a quick nap. Ten to twenty minutes can reduce your sleep debt and leave you ready for action.

Tiny Self-Care Ideas for the Soul

1. Imagine you’re your best friend. If you were, what would you tell yourself right now? Look in the mirror and say it.

2. Use your commute for a “Beauty Scavenger Hunt.” Find five unexpected beautiful things on your way to work.

3. Help someone. Carry a bag, open a door, or pick up an extra carton of milk for a neighbor.

4. Check in with your emotions. Sit quietly and just name without judgment what you’re feeling.

5. Write out your thoughts. Go for fifteen minutes on anything bothering you. Then let it go as you burn or bin the paper.

6. Choose who you spend your time with today. Hang out with “Radiators” who emit enthusiasm and positivity, and not “Drains” whose pessimism and negativity robs energy.

7. Stroke a pet. If you don’t have one, go to the park and find one. (Ask first!)

8. Get positive feedback. Ask three good friends to tell you what they love about you.

9. Make a small connection. Have a few sentences of conversation with someone in customer service such as a sales assistant or barista.

10. Splurge a little. Buy a small luxury as a way of valuing yourself.

11. Have a self-date. Spend an hour alone doing something that nourishes you (reading, your hobby, visiting a museum or gallery, etc.)

12. Exercise a signature strength. Think about what you’re good at, and find an opportunity for it today.

13. Take a home spa. Have a long bath or shower, sit around in your bathrobe, and read magazines.

14. Ask for help—big or small, but reach out.

15. Plan a two-day holiday for next weekend. Turn off your phone, tell people you’ll be away, and then do something new in your own town.

Little and Often Wins the Day

With a little bit of attention to your own self-care, the fog will lift.

You’ll feel more connected to yourself and the world around you.

You’ll delight in small pleasures, and nothing will seem quite as difficult as it did before.

Like that car, you must keep yourself tuned up to make sure that you don’t need a complete overhaul.

Incorporating a few of these tiny self-care ideas in your day will help keep you in tune.

Which one will you try first?

Ellen Bard’s mission is to help you shine more brightly at work and in life. She has a fancy degree, works with those who are too tough on themselves, and loves all things that sparkle. For the free cheat sheet: 5 Unusual Ways to Take Care of Yourself, click over to EllenBard.com.

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Personal Care

Pelosi: ‘Americans Celebrate the Beauty, Bravery and Vibrancy of Our Cherished LGBTQ Communities’

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Speaker Nancy Pelosi in the San Francisco Pride Celebration & Parade, June 28, 2015. (Photo by Rick Loomis/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) put out a statement on Tuesday—the beginning of LGBTQ Pride Month—to express her commitment to serving the LGBTQ community in the United States.

“Every June, Americans celebrate the beauty, bravery and vibrancy of our cherished LGBTQ communities and commemorate the remarkable progress our nation has made toward full equality,” Pelosi said.

“Tragically, hatred and bigotry still linger today: an alarming wave of anti-LGBTQ legislation is sweeping statehouses across the nation, while transgender women of color are suffering rising violence in our communities,” said Pelosi.

“As these dark forces threaten to erode our hard-won progress, we cannot relent until our LGBTQ friends, family and neighbors can live with safety, dignity and pride,” she said.

“Pelosi Statement on LGBTQ Pride Month

San Francisco – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement in honor of LGBTQ Pride Month:

“‘Every June, Americans celebrate the beauty, bravery and vibrancy of our cherished LGBTQ communities and commemorate the remarkable progress our nation has made toward full equality.  Just five decades ago, proud activists at the Stonewall Inn boldly rejected centuries of hatred and persecution in a moment that changed America and, indeed, the world.  During Pride Month, we carry on what began in the streets of New York City, proudly marching to demand an end to bigotry and to advance the cause of justice.

“‘Our nation has taken important strides toward full equality, thanks to generations of leaders and activists who rallied support for the gay community during the HIV/AIDS crisis, passed protections against discrimination and hate crimes, defeated the appalling ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy, secured the right to marriage equality and more.  Tragically, hatred and bigotry still linger today: an alarming wave of anti-LGBTQ legislation is sweeping statehouses across the nation, while transgender women of color are suffering rising violence in our communities.  As these dark forces threaten to erode our hard-won progress, we cannot relent until our LGBTQ friends, family and neighbors can live with safety, dignity and pride.

“‘That is why, in February, the Democratic House once again passed the landmark Equality Act, which must become law.  The House salutes President Biden and Vice President Harris for their leadership, ensuring that LGBTQ Americans are protected against discrimination under the Civil Rights Act, ending the shameful ban on transgender service members, working to protect transgender youth and stopping anti-LGBTQ discrimination in our health care system.  This Pride Month, let us recommit ourselves to finally realizing our nation’s founding creed: that all are equal.’”

This content was originally published here.

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Personal Care

Dolly Parton on New Fragrance, Going Into Beauty – WWD

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Two years after signing a licensing deal with IMG, multihyphenate entertainer and philanthropist Dolly Parton is making her first plays in beauty.

In her first bid for the beauty consumer, Parton — who has had a busy year, from funding coronavirus vaccine research to the opening of Dollywood, her theme park in Tennessee — is introducing Dolly — Scent From Above, her first fragrance line in partnership with Scent Beauty.

The fragrance line includes two eau de parfums, which will launch on HSN on July 28; a body cream; an eau de toilette, and a body mist in Walmart, Walgreens, Scent Beauty’s website and an Instagram store. Prices range from $40 to $65; industry sources think the range will surpass $40 million in sales during its first year at retail.

Fragrance made perfect sense for her first beauty product, Parton told WWD, given her own relationship with scent. “When I signed my branding deal with IMG, I thought, ‘I’m going to start with perfume.’ Everybody has always told me how good I smell,” Parton said. “I felt like a mad scientist trying to find the right combination, but we did and it took us about two years. I’m going to be doing wigs and accessories and makeup.”

Scent Beauty’s licensing deal with Parton was a coup for the company, which is optimistic about the line’s performance — and its tailored approach to distribution. “Dolly Parton is a cultural icon that’s resonating with Americans and people all over the world — she’s cross-generational,” said Steve Mormoris, chief executive officer of Scent Beauty. “Given this broad appeal and icon status, we decided to not pursue any one channel, but to have a broad-base distribution strategy from luxury channels to mass.”

HSN shared Mormoris’ enthusiasm. “As an admired musical icon and adored philanthropist with her endless contributions spanning over several decades, we are excited to add Dolly’s fragrance to our portfolio and share her inspirational story with our customers,” Bridget Love, general merchandising manager, vice president of beauty merchandising, QVC and HSN, said in an email.

Mormoris added that Scent is eyeing other categories, such as hair mists and home fragrances, for expansion, and will be sold internationally as well.

Parton has more products in mind, too. “I’m going to be doing wigs, and accessories and makeup,” she said. “I’m going to hopefully create a scent for the men in my life, too. Although Dolly — Scent from Above smells so good, I think the boys will want to wear it.”

Although Parton and Scent Beauty are casting a wide net with the distribution strategy, Parton is still making the process her own. “I actually wrote a song for it, called Sent From Above,” Parton said. “I don’t think that Liz Taylor ever wrote songs [for her perfume].”

“I think I’ll have a fun time promoting it and enjoy getting out there and talking about it,” Parton continued. “I really want to see how people respond to it.”

She has no plans to slow down, either in or out of beauty. “I’m working on a lot of new music and some fun, exciting things at the end of the year,” she said. “I’m working on different projects, but right now I’m occupied with hawking my goods.”

FOR MORE FROM WWD.COM, SEE:

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Exquisite Oil Paintings Capture the Beauty of Cloudy Skies

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Exquisite Oil Paintings Capture the Beauty of Cloudy Skies

Exquisite Oil Paintings Capture the Beauty of Cloudy Skies

Cloud Paintings by Ksenya Verse

Looking at one of Ksenya Verse‘s paintings is a good reminder to look at the sky more often. The Arizona-based artist captures the nebulous forms of clouds and their numerous colors in her exquisite oil paintings.

Originally from Russia, Verse moved to Arizona at the age of 19 to “broaden her visual and cultural perspectives.” There, she fell in love with the striking landscape of the American Southwest, finding particular fascination with the uninterrupted horizons, dramatic cloud formations, and shimmering bodies of water. “My work is all about the innate connection between the external sky and our internal emotions,” she explains on her website.

Verse creates her mutable clouds by layering different colors in soft, rounded shapes, and by emphasizes light and shadow. This connection to the sun and how it affects the appearance of the clouds is what brings the amorphous shapes to life. In addition, the artist uses composition to accentuate the size of her cloud formations by taking up most of the space with the sky and leaving the landscape as a thin strip at the bottom of the panel.

You can purchase original artwork via Verse’s website, and learn more about her painting process by following the artist on Instagram.

Arizona-based artist Ksenya Verse creates exquisite paintings of cloudy skies.

Cloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya VerseCloud Paintings by Ksenya Verse

Watch these videos for more insight into Verse’s creative process:

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A post shared by Ksenya Verse (@ksenyaverse)

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A post shared by Ksenya Verse (@ksenyaverse)

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Ksenya Verse (@ksenyaverse)

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Ksenya Verse (@ksenyaverse)

Ksenya Verse: Website | Facebook | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Ksenya Verse.

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READ: Exquisite Oil Paintings Capture the Beauty of Cloudy Skies

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