Having a self-care routine that fits seamlessly into your lifestyle will level up every other area of your life. As the saying goes, ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup’. The intention of ‘Ahimsa Week’ is to help you to create a 7 day self-care routine that is tailored to YOUR needs and goals, that you refine over time. My suggestion is to take these next 7 days to see how what you plan out works for you, and then make any changes needed to make this a sustainable part of your life. Are you wondering what ‘ahimsa’ is, and how it relates to self-care? Check out my post, ‘What Is Ahimsa?’ here.
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The key is: be gentle with yourself.
Self-care isn’t about having more chores to tick off, it’s about bringing more joy into your life and doing things that uplift you. For people who struggle with anxiety, sometimes taking care of themselves only adds to the overwhelm. This week is about having it written down in black and white so it’s not taking up any negative space in the back of your mind.
Often when we feel low, we neglect taking care of ourselves. This can manifest in a myriad of ways, but often our self-care suffers. Simple things like moisturizing, meditating, doing yoga or putting on a face mask is a way of reminding ourselves that we matter and that we deserve our own love and nurture.
A word of advice:
Don’t try to do too much too soon. My self-care schedule below is simply a means of inspiration. You’re welcome to copy it, but I encourage you to take the time to build out a plan that feels wholesome and healing for you. Maybe that means scheduling in time just to play with your dog, or just sitting in the sun.
In my own journey, I wrote down something I wanted to do every day and 1-2 other things for each day of the week. Having this simple schedule helped me to stay accountable and recognize how achievable having a self-care routine really is.
For me, ahimsa week represents the foundation of my self-care routine. Of course, some weeks I do more but I very rarely do less, which is an improvement from just six months ago!
The broad overview:
- It can be any 7 days, you don’t have to go Monday – Sunday.
- Write down 1-2 recurring self-care activities each day, and 1-2 others activities each day.
My ahimsa week example:
For me Day 1 is Monday. I meditate for 10 minutes in the morning before doing anything else and then get onto my workout. Then, in the evening I use my derma-roller.
Then on Day 2, or Tuesday I start the day with a short meditation again, then do yoga instead of a workout. In the afternoon I head outside for a walk or bike ride in nature, unless it’s raining!
Humpday Wednesday, or Day 3 is very similar to Monday, except I do a face mask instead of using my derma-roller in the evenings.
Thursday, Day 4 mimics Tuesday with a morning meditation, yoga and a walk or bike ride in nature.
I finish the week on Friday, Day 5 the way I started it – with a morning meditation, a workout and a derma-roller session in the weekend.
On Saturday, Day 6 I repeat Wednesday’s routine with a morning meditation, a workout and a face mask.
And Sunday, Day 7 is a morning meditation, an extra long yoga practice and time spent giving myself a manicure and pedicure.
Is this the 7 day self-care challenge for you?
Ahimsa Week is for you if you’ve tried to master a self-care routine and found it overwhelming and unsustainable. It’s the perfect way to start a self-care regimen that you’ll want to stay consistent with and maintain over time. Instead of outlining what I think you should do, I’m sharing the simple formula that I’ve used to tackle self-care so you can design a routine for yourself.
To get the printable checklist sent straight to your inbox, click here, (on that link you can also grab my three other freebies!) You’ll get an email with the download link, as well as my favorite self-care ambient music, a mantra and a reflection on how ahimsa can enrich your relationship with yourself and everyone else.
Once you’ve completed Ahimsa Week, I recommend reflecting on the week and writing your new self-care routine into your schedule. For example, Day 1 is Monday for me. So, I have a meditation, a workout and my derma-roller session built into my weekly planner. By the way, if you’re wondering what a derma-roller is, you can learn about it in my, ‘9 Habits of People Who Have Clear Skin’ post here.
Nine self-care goodies I love:
In my healing journey, I’ve come across so many amazing self-care products that have added value and joy to my life. Here’s a round up of my all time favorites that I think you’ll love too:
Silk + Sonder’s Monthly Self-Care Journals
These monthly self-care journals from Silk + Sonder are absolutely beautiful, and strike the perfect balance between providing structure and allowing you to fulfill your own unique needs. They’re designed to help you focus on self-care in order to build a happy, productive and vibrant life. You can choose between a 3, 6 and 12 month subscription, which is much less overwhelming that using an annual planner. I just love the feeling of starting fresh each month. Here’s an overview of their pricing:
- Monthly Subscription – $19.95/month cancel anytime
- 3-Month Subscription – $54
- 6-Month Subscription – $90
- 12-Month Subscription – $160 (saves $79)
Check them out here.
The Spirit Almanac by Emma Loewe and Lindsay Kellner
As someone who loves rituals, loves self-care and is fascinated by ancient cultures, this gorgeous book was a no-brainer. It’s written by two of mindbodygreen’s top editors and is a completely engrossing read that leaves you feeling more connected with the natural world. You learn to practice and personalize dozens of routines that incorporate science-backed techniques like breathwork, meditation, and aromatherapy, as well as more esoteric offerings like astrology, crystals, and tarot. You also learn the fascinating history of ritual and trace these ancient spiritual practices through the ages to modern day applications. I love that it’s divided by the four seasons because the rituals teach you to:
- Honor the quiet of winter and the start of the year by setting new intentions with a seed planting ritual
- Use a breathwork ritual to release blocks and move forward in spring
- Celebrate summer with a forest bathing ritual to clear your mind
- Wind down in fall with a self-soothing full moon ceremony to reflect on the year
Check it out here.
SoWell’s Fair Trade Himalayan Salt Lamps and Bath Soak
One of my most exciting discoveries in my self-care journey has been SoWell’s comprehensive range of high quality Himalayan Salt products. What is Himalayan Salt? It’s simply ancient sea salt that’s been turned into a crystalline form, in a process similar to how coal gradually becomes a diamond. The 84 essential minerals and electrolytes in Himalayan Salt help to remineralize the body, which boosts your immune system, and reduce inflammation. It also helps with skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema and is anti-microbial and anti-bacterial. I like this Stress Relief Bath Soak and their Crystal Cube Salt Lamp.
Check out SoWell’s range here.
Love Beauty & Planet Body Lotion Argan Oil and Lavender
Love Beauty & Planet is one of my favorite cruelty free, ethical beauty brands. Their Argan Oil and Lavender lotion smells amazing, lasts for ages and really helps me nod off at night. I love taking a hot bath, slathering on this lotion and then going straight to bed with a good book.
Check it out here.
The Empowered Highly Sensitive Person Workbook by Amanda Cassil, PhD.
If you’re an HSP (Highly Sensitive Person), this comprehensive workbook will be a great asset for you. You might be an HSP if you process your environment more deeply than others, are easily overstimulated and have a high level of emotional intensity. If you already know you are, you might’ve found the lack of resources frustrating. This workbook contains the latest research on the HSP traits, as well as useful exercises that will teach you how to prepare for stressful situations, manage your expectations, set healthy boundaries, and communicate better.
Check it out here.
Therabox – A Monthly Self-Care Subscription Box
Therabox is the ultimate self care subscription box! Each box includes 1 research inspired therapeutic activity to wire your brain for more joy plus 6 to 8 self-care wellness goodies to reduce stress & enhance your life! Each box is put together by therapists and aims to inspire more love & happiness in every box through mindfully curated products to feed the mind, body & soul. Here’s a brief overview of what you can expect:
- Over $100+ in retail value in every box
- Curated by therapists to increase happiness & reduce stress
- 1 happiness activity plus 6 – 8 self care wellness goodies (i.e., aromatherapy, natural/organic bath, body, skincare products etc.)
Begins at $30.99 per month (Use code CJFIRST10 at checkout to get 10% off!)
Upbox – A Christian Self-Care Box
- Each box has 8-10 thoughtfully sourced items to encourage you to make time for soul and self-care
- All beauty, body and bath goodies in our boxes are vegan and cruelty-free
- They often support other people’s passion projects, especially women-owned businesses. A preference is given to natural and organic items too.
- A portion of every box purchase supports women’s rehab.
- Only ships within United States
Begins at $35.00 per month (Use code UPBOX50 at checkout for 50% off 3, 6 & 12 month plans!)
Stress Less Card Deck – 50 Mindfulness & Meditation Exercises
Because of it’s compact size, the Stress Less Cards Deck is designed to be taken with you everywhere you go. It’s a fantastic resource to get your hands on if you struggle with social anxiety. The deck contains 50 effective exercises to help you relieve stress and deal with anxiety whenever you need it the most. You can use them on the bus, at work, at your desk, while queuing at the supermarket or before going to bed at night. They’re based on Neuro-Linguistic Programming techniques, as well as powerful mindfulness meditation exercises that are known to help reduce anxiety and stop the mind’s automatic stress response. You’ll learn to focus on your breathing, observe your body and awaken positive emotions through effective visualizations. Each deck costs $13.15.
Check them out here.
Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by Dr. David Burns, M.D.
I love this book so much I put it as one of my top eight empowering resources in my free eBook, Revamp. I believe this book is the single most important book anyone struggling with chronic anxiety and depression can read. It was written as a manual for patients, not for psychiatrists. The book starts off by covering the ‘why’ of anxiety, depression and other mood disorders; essentially setting out the fact that we feel the way we think. It then gives us a lot of practical exercises to deal with low self-esteem, anger, guilt and criticism. I did a lot of those exercises with the help of my therapist.What I found most helpful was learning about the ten cognitive distortions, which are the thought patterns common to everyone struggling with anxiety and depression.
I hope you find both and Ahimsa Week and some of those amazing self-care goodies helpful. Are you going to give Ahimsa Week a try? Let me know in the comments! If you haven’t already, sign up using the button below. Feel free to grab my three other freebies while you’re at it.
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