ON THE IMPORTANCE OF SELF-CARE

I love Valentine’s Day because I love, to love.

Truthfully I’ve only been in love during this holiday once or twice. Which was great, they were extremely powerful experiences for me. But what about the other countless vdays spent alone? The way I see it, being single on Valentines can be just as intimate as those shared with a partner. Each year I choose to participate in this holiday because I am so grateful for the incredible people in my life and proud of all that I’ve become.
The key to receiving love, is giving love within. Self-care has been a huge part of my life for many years now. I am consciously aware of how I speak to myself and accept my imperfections with sincere kindness. I’ll admit some days are harder than others but the trick to all of this is you. Be clear about what you desire, then decide to give yourself those things regardless of whether you’re in a relationship or not. I mentally take note of what brings me bliss throughout the day. Here are a few of my favorites in hopes of inspiring you:

1. Stretch immediately upon waking. Every movement charged with health and vitality. Notice your body’s beauty and pamper the hell out of it. Here’s a super short yoga flow for a quick boost when you’re on the go.
2. Start every morning with a warm glass of lemon water. Not only does it aid digestion, it boosts your immune system and purges toxins from the blood, which helps keep skin clear. Take it from a girl that’s struggled with acne most of her life, this is a must!
3. Treat yourself to a deep tissue massage every few weeks. Those tense, cramped muscles will thank you.
4. Coconut oil is a gift from heaven. I use it as a lotion and my skin has never felt so soft!
5. Wind down a long day with a warm bath and a good book. My favorite combination.
6. Dance often! Notice every vibration running through your body and embrace your childlike nature. 
“Thinking is the biggest mistake a dancer can make. You have to feel it.” —Michael Jackson
7. Always make your bed. Walking through the door and seeing my bedroom peacefully together reminds me to stay productive and thankful for a comfortable resting space.
8. The secret to making all of this work? A full night’s sleep. I aim for about 7 hours each night.
9. Start a journal. Writing has taught me about vulnerability, forgiveness and my emotional well-being. Even if you don’t do it daily, I encourage you to use this wonderful outlet on those not so great days. I promise the result will be worthwhile.
10. Buy yourself flowers. Growing up I remember other girls always receiving flowers from admiring boys. And it made me sad to never be one of them. One birthday, when I was much older, my sister gifted me my first ever bouquet of pink roses. I cried and realized the love I longed for was already surrounding me. I began buying flowers for myself and often. There’s a power in showing up for yourself that simply cannot be matched.
My favorite Valentine tradition: Write a love letter to yourself.
Next year, while everyone is rushing around buying flowers and chocolates celebrate your self-worth by writing a letter of adoration for all that you are, have been and will be. It’s perfectly okay to praise those long lashes of yours and quirky sense of humor. Cherish it all and reread these letters anytime you need a little pick me up. 
xoxo
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