To lead with love is to be patient and kind to one another, but first it is important to be kind and patient with yourself. In order to give to others, we must give to ourselves. It is sort of like when you are watering plants. If you don't have any water in your pot, what can you give your plants?
Lets begin by discussing Ephesians 5:29. "For no man has ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it." It is important that we provide our body with key nutrients that give us energy, joy, and allow our body to work properly. A great diet to follow to obtain these key nutrients is the Mediterranean diet (see below for details). What does it mean to "cherish" our bodies? The simple google definition of cherish is "to treat with affection and tenderness; hold dear." The LOVE ALWAYz team came up with a 10 of our favorite ways to cherish ourselves and we listed them below.
1. Healthy Meal Prep
Chances are when you are super busy, you do not take time out to cook, but instead order DoorDash or fast food. This is why meal prepping is important! You will have your dish already prepared so there will be no need to waste money eating out when chances are that meal is not good for you. The Meditteranean Diet is effective a reducing and improving so many diseases including diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. We encourage you to follow this diet closely. Check out Pinterest for healthy meal prep ideas!
Headspace is a great app for morning meditation! Start your day off with a clear, relaxed mind. Set daily affirmations every morning and live by them that day. You can begin your day with a scripture on the Bible app. Meditation can reduce anxiety, and enhance self-awareness. Try mediation every morning for 1 week, and let us know how it made you feel!
3. Home Spa Day
Its time for that favorite face mask, bath bomb, or hair style. Relaxation is key! Enjoy whatever activity you pick without worrying about other tasks you have scheduled. Indulge in that Indian Clay Mask for your skin, hair, and body. Pinterest has awesome DIY spa activities at home. Don't forget that this works for children as well, add your children or younger siblings to your spa day!
Exercise is really important for humans. We were made to move and it keeps our bones and joints strong! The key to consistent exercise is finding what suits YOU best. Its so tempting to want to jump into your favorite instagramers work-out plan, but maybe your body wants something else. We encourage you to find the best type, intensity, and duration perfect for you! Start by purchasing your favorite kettle ball and trying a youtube challenge! Want to do something with less intensity? Grab a yoga mat and check out YogaWithKassandra on YouTube for her inspiring 30-day yoga challenge!
5. Read and/or Write
Journaling can be a great way to decompress and express yourself! Sometimes we don't want to feel like a burden on others or maybe we have a secret that we don't want anyone to know. Journaling is a great way to just write our thoughts while they are still processing. Reading is fundamental. Find a series that interests you, or a novel written by an author similar to you! If you love relationship/family/friend drama check out Butterfly by Ashley Antionette.
6. Deep Clean!
A clean space, is a clean mind! It doesn't have to be spring to deep clean! Organization is key! Pinterest has tons of organization ideas. We encourage you to donate no longer wanted items/clothing to your local Salvation Army or donation boxes around your city! Try organizing your drawers, makeup, or hair accessories with some small plastic storage bins from amazon!
7. Listen to Music/Podcasts
Music is God's gift to the soul! Make a bomb playlist! Follow a bomb playlist! Discover a new artist from a different country (Check out Mahalia from the UK- She's the best :) Podcasts are a great listen while on a walk, driving, or even in the shower! Its a great way to stay in touch with the world and get different viewpoints on different topics. Want to make your room more at zen? Whats better than adding a bluetooth vinyl record player and grabbing some classic vinyls to listen to with a candle lit and bottle of wine?
8. Face-time Someone You Love
Social isolation leads to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and many other horrible conditions and it can even cause death. We encourage you to find your "in-group". Quarantine definitely makes this challenging for those of us in "Zoom-school", but I encourage you to DM a new friend in class or on social media that shares similar beliefs/hobbies as you. When you feel lonely, face-time your family! For those of us blessed to have grandparents, I am sure they would love to see your face!
9. Dress to Impress (Yourself)
Wine and dine yourself! Quarantine has made this super important! We get comfortable laying around in lounge wear, but it feels so good to dress to impress every now and then! Grab your favorite wine (or sparkling juice), put on your favorite outfit, grab those shoes you have been wanting to wear, and SHOW OUT! We encourage social distancing, so some bomb pics for social media and go on a face-time date with your bestie!
10. Plan time for YOU.
We saved the best for last! When creating that To-Do-List, or when scheduling your weekly/monthly/yearly plans, it is important to schedule in time for you! Our founder is a entrepreneur and medical student, so you can only imagine how busy her schedule is. She encourages break time, and off-days at least once a week to do something you genuinely love or to do nothing at all and just decompress.
Self-care can improve our physical health, mental health, and spiritual health. We encourage you to explore some of the ideas we mentioned and comment some other self-care ideas that we may not have mentioned.