Dropping the F-Bomb

Self-care 101

Brittany Tiplady // Columnist

I know what you’re probably thinking: why is this so-called feminist writer not talking about the viral #MeToo campaign that has swept our social media feeds this past week? The truth is, that topic is near to me and one that I don’t think I could truly delve into without taking weeks to process and write with full integrity and vulnerability.

In the meantime, I want to tap into the topic off self-care and how I changed that buzzword from major eyeroll, to a personalized ritual.

Rewind to three months ago: I was in the thick of planning my (expensive, stressful, demanding) wedding, my business was (and is) growing rapidly and requiring more and more brain power, my freelance career was overwhelming, and so, as I often do, I relied on my age-old unhealthy habits to cope with the stress and anxiety.

I cringed when the women in my life would talk about their self-care routines and necessities. Meditation? I don’t have time for that. Walks in nature? I’m more of an indoors, Netflix and mindless Instagram scrolling kind of gal. Clean eating? Catch me in a drive-thru pondering what I can eat to quickly absorb my feelings while I’m racing down Highway 99 to my next gig.

When my fellow woman cohorts would explain that they needed a day of rest or dropped the self-care buzzword, I would incessantly cringe. My immediate (albeit, judge-y) thought was always: that sounds like laziness to me. I don’t have time for that.

I know, I sound like an awful tyrant. I’m sorry. It’s all about learning, right?

What I really needed was to find what self-care tactics and rituals worked for me, and also let down my guard and come to the realization that I can make time for ritual, I just have to find the ones that suit my lifestyle and my needs.

Disconnecting from my phone and the internet isn’t really my thing. I love feeling connected to the world, and I work in social media, so that’s not the most viable option. I like the odd hike and picnic, but a walk in the forest isn’t cleansing any of my problems. I eat well on a daily basis, but fuck it, if I want to order a large pizza on a Thursday afternoon when I haven’t had time to grocery shop, you bet I’m going to have Panago cued up on speed dial.

So, now that I’ve divulged what doesn’t work for me, let’s bring infuse some good ol’ positivity into this article and talk about what has.

Morning coffee ritual

I drink coffee every morning anyway – and I almost always prefer to start the day with my own brew, so pumping up my jo with some adaptogens felt right. I am definitely reliant on caffeine, but was starting to feel betrayed by the post-coffee jitters and anxiety that has recently started. I began adding a teaspoon of Anandamide “Bless Alchemy” from Sun Potion into my coffee each day. Easy. Stress-free. And full of goodness.

My Anandamide blend activates and harmonizes the nervous, digestive and immune systems and is said to help brighten the mind and open the heart. Caring for myself and my mental health in this little way has become a subtle ritual in my mornings that shows my body: “Hey, let’s take two seconds to put this brown delicious powder in your coffee, and start the day taking care of yourself.”

Skincare

I went through puberty at the ripe age of 23. I take late bloomer to a whole other level.

My body skipped the pimply teen years and I was instead greeted with hormonal acne (amongst other pleasantries), in my 20’s. Up until a few months back my skincare “routine” looked like this: take makeup off with a baby wipe at night, maybe scrub my pores in the shower with the same Saint Ives Apricot Scrub blend I’ve been using since I was 15, lather my face with coconut oil. Repeat.

During my stagette weekend, my best friends were connecting over skin care routines, and products, swapping research and recommendations, and I decided to let their enthusiasm (that I truly found really silly), provide some education.

Following their lead, and reading up on skincare routines and products, I started to invest in my own skin. I now carve out time each night and morning to take care of my face. Come hell or high water. Come raging hangover, or looming deadline, I take a few minutes for my face. In truth, it’s the only one I got, so why wouldn’t I nurture it?

It sounds so gratuitous but showing myself some love in this way has improved my mental health and the way I approach myself in the mirror. Whether it be doing a face-mask, or gently applying serum, or researching organic ways to care for skin, this act of self-love has been bomb for my confidence. And maybe will keep the crow’s feet at bay for a bit longer.

20/20 Vision

I have legit superhero vision. It’s something that I am proud of and hope to have for a long time. Now that my life is primarily spent in front of a screen, I recently started getting headaches and sore eyes after a long day of tapping away at my Mac. I purchased a cute pair of “digital protection” glasses to wear while I’m at work, or when I feel my peepers start to get strained. They were under $100 (let’s be real, writers are broke bitches so this price was right), and show my body that I care, once again, in a way that feels right for me.

The discussion on self-care rings “millennial,” and after developing my own routine, I’m totally fine with that. You only have one vessel to do life with, and life is like really, really hard. Your body carries you through joy, pain, loss, stress, work, sleep, drunken nights, declined credit cards and hardships. Show it some fucking love.

 

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