Journaling has become one of my favorite forms of self-care. For me, I appreciate it because it encourages me to face the thoughts and feelings that I’ve been avoiding all day. I am definitely one to suppress my emotions just to put on a smile, so journaling gives me the space for self-reflection and venting. Though, as much as I enjoy pouring my heart out, for some, this form of writing can seem like a daunting task.
However, a date with your notebook does not have to be some sort of huge formality or become a big ordeal in the slightest. In fact, your journaling experience should not at all feel like a meeting with your shrink. Instead, it should be viewed as an easygoing outlet that is there for you whenever you may need it.
I’d like to think of myself as a self-care advocate. I love nothing more than to practice self-love and to promote it to those around me.
Now, although “self-care” goes a lot deeper than the surface-level face masks and manicures, these types of DIY spa days are not to be overlooked! Sometimes, giving your physical body that little bit of extra love can be just the thing you need in order to get yourself in a better mindset for the day.
That is why I decided to compile a list of my all-time favorite, summer self-care staples that I’ve incorporated into my day to day routine.
Better yet, for all of you college students struggling financially, don’t stop reading! Self-care does not have to be expensive. In fact, most of these products can be found at your local Walmart or drug store.
Bloating. Even the word itself is ugly. It feels round and insulting. Normally, these descriptive words would translate directly to how I feel towards my own bulging belly. However, now, I am working towards the opposite (even as difficult as it is).
This past summer, my body was in the absolute best shape that it has ever been in. I was exercising regularly, eating well, and just giving my body some much-needed attention. It was definitely the definition of a self-care summer.
So, to no surprise, I spent the summer taking a record-winning number of mirror selfies. And, not just any mirror selfies. I had my (almost) abs exposed and my leg muscles flexed. I felt good, baby! During those months, I actually enjoyed wearing crop tops and never passed up the opportunity to take photos at the beach.
Seeing genuine evidence of my personal growth made me feel incredible.
I feel it most at night, when I’m laying awake by myself. There are only so many things that can distract your mind when you’re in the silence of a darkened room.
It happens with long car rides too. Car rides can actually be the worst. I have an hour and a half drive from my university to my hometown, and doing it alone is enough to drive me mad some days. Podcasts aren’t so effective if your brain chooses to ignore them, no matter how hard you try to listen.
My mother was an incredible gardener, filling our yard with gorgeous flowers season after season. And, to this day, my father works wonders in our vegetable garden, growing all of the beautifully delicious vegetables that feed us all summer long. Yet, even with their talents in tending to plants, I have never been one to have a green thumb.
I bought a cactus and another small succulent last summer to have as decoration in my dorm room. However, I over-watered my cactus, rotting it out only a short two weeks after buying it. Then, I almost killed the remaining succulent the exact same way (because I clearly didn’t learn anything from it), until my dad came to the rescue. Here we are a year later, and he has kept my little “succy” alive and well. Though, he did not let me take it back to college with me.
So, inevitably, this summer I got three new plant friends as replacements. Does my dad know? He sure does. Is he going to end up caring for them when I begin to kill them off? Absolutely not! I am determined to not let it happen again.
It has gotten to the point where I have simply forgotten how to take care of myself. Funny, because this blog is all about empowering people to take part in self-care and self-love, yet I can’t even do it myself.