By Ariel Putman
When we think of Warmth in our bodies, we think of our heart. Love is the fuel for our heart, and sometimes our tank can run low or empty. There is no “one self-care practice fits all” - it’s important we tailor it to ourselves. It can take some time, especially if you are new to any form of self-care but it’s always good to start with the basics: your love language. Gary Chapman is an American author who wrote the book The 5 Love Languages that was meant for couples to help better understand each other and connect deeper. There are free quizzes you can take online if you don’t already know your dominant language. It’s easy to overlook our very own relationship with ourselves, so why not implement our own love language into our respective self care routines? If you ever feel your tank is running empty or notice unhealthy habits, take the time to realign yourself with self care habits that cater to you.
Inspirations for igniting Warmth within based on your love language:
Quiet time! Writing and journaling is very essential because it just requires you to be fully present with yourself and give your thoughts some undivided attention. It’s important to find a space to be alone, no scrolling or responding to emails, just have things by you that bring you peace. Maybe it’s listening to music, doodling, dancing, staring at nature, maybe it’s all of the above. Customize it to you, make a cozy space for yourself to do this. Grab yourself a beverage, like ice water with lemon, or hot tea, and wear comfy clothes.
Words of Affirmation
Mantras! Whether it’s listening to meditations with positive affirmations, saying empowering phrases out loud to yourself repeatedly, or even writing it down, charge those words with love and gratitude. Even when it feels hard, that’s the most important time to do it. Maybe write love letters to yourself. Leave post-its around the house, set reminders on your phone of how amazing you are. If we share and expect words of love from others, the very least we can do is do the same for ourselves. You know the feeling of getting a super thoughtful card? Take the time to write one for yourself. Maybe you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and smile, tell yourself you’re beautiful, feel that warmth.
Get in tune with your body! Those who need a lot of physical touch can really be suffering right now in this time of quarantine, especially if you live by yourself. Along with physical exercises of your choice, yoga is great for supercharging the body with love. I particularly enjoy yin yoga when I feel my tank is running low, it is slower and focuses on relieving tensions through the body with longer stretches and deeper breathing. We hold so much tension, fear, anxiety, in all different parts of our bodies. Thankfully you can access a lot of yoga via youtube, I like Yoga With Adrienne for all of the variety. If you don’t already, get into some essential oils. Peppermint is great for when you wake up, rub a little on your hands and put your hands up to your nose and do a couple of deep inhales. At night, take lavender and do the same thing and maybe spend some time massaging your temples. And sometimes giving yourself a good ole hug is so important. Wrap your arms around yourself as tight and comfortably as you can for at least ten seconds and think of a least one thing you are grateful for and usually multiple grateful thoughts will follow and it’s just like you gave your heart a little boost.
Acts of Service
Set up a relaxing atmosphere! When I’m feeling a little down, I pull out all of the bath goodies: epsom salt, essential oils, candles, and I like to make my own shower sprays. I have a 16 oz spray bottle that I fill mostly with water and will do 20 drops or so of essentials oils, my personal favorite is eucalyptus. Also if you’re into chakra sprays, those are great too to spray into the steam which is how i begin every bath. I’ll start the shower first to help steam up the room, spray your homemade spray, then when I feel like it’s steamy enough I switch it to the regular bath faucet. Acts of service is all about planning and being extra thoughtful with yourself. It can be preparing a treat that is nourishing, one of my favorites is making a homemade sipping broth for the week, or making healthy homemade dressings for salads ahead of time.
Gifts with intention! Buy yourself a book, plan a solo trip, buy yourself a Master Class, paint yourself a picture, etc. It’s not necessarily spoiling yourself, it's always the thought and intention behind the gift. If you love clothes, maybe first go through your closet and reconnect and reorganize your pieces. This is where I always find Marie Kondo’s methods very useful. You can read her books or watch her Netflix show to get the basic idea. It can also be spending the time to make yourself a fun baked treat. Whether it’s homemade cookies, cupcakes or maybe even a more extravagant meal like homemade pasta. You already have the mind for thoughtful gifts so get extra creative when gifting yourself!
These are just inspirations but really take the time to curate self care that gets you excited. Rather than pick up your phone, turn on another reality show, or stuff your face with a bag of chips-allow yourself to explore different activities that bring you peace. The most important thing in your home is you. Connecting with these love languages help you vibrate with love. Think of your home as a plant, and self care is the root-we must keep it nourished and strong because balanced and loving homes that radiate Warmth start with the self.