Summer Self Care Intentions

 
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Recently I started listening to the Hey Girl podcast by Alex Elle again. I picked up in the middle of this season, and have been catching up with an episode or two every day. Alex’s mini episode on her self care intentions inspired me to set my own.

From October 2018 - April 2019, I really let my own self care go. I stopped going to yoga, I wasn’t working out, or eating well. I was working nonstop and allowing myself to be run fully into the ground. I wasn’t protecting myself through self care, so this summer, and especially as we move into the busy seasons of fall and holiday in the small business world, I want to make sure I move more mindfully and make time for myself.

So here they are- my summer self care intentions

  1. Stretch every day. I started going back to yoga a few weeks ago after a six month hiatus, and it shook me to realize how much I had let my body go. I had lost so much strength and flexibility that I thought my constantly-on-my-feet job would keep even if I wasn’t making time for the mat. So very wrong. So in addition to having a regular yoga practice at Bluebird Sky Yoga, I’m also making time to stretch in the evenings on the floor, on my mat, and with my pup who loves to lay under me while I’m in plank pose.

  2. Run and work out. I’m trying not to add too much to my schedule, especially as I’m finally finding a little space in it, but running for 10-15 minutes once a week has been waking me back up mentally and physically. I have never loved running, but this little task has made me feel the power of being in my body, and feeling more capable than I have in a long time. With some space in my schedule, I’ve also been tagging along with my husband to the local skate parks to watch him get back on his board after a few years. For my birthday, he got me a skateboard of my own (probably because he was tired of me stealing his while we were there lol), and I’m thoroughly enjoying the balance challenge.

  3. Making time for flowers. This is something I have always done, but we moved to a more floral part of our neighborhood in February, and I’m so excited to watch it bloom this season. My dog Roze and I take daily walks around to drink it all in, but I am also making a list of flower spaces to visit this summer. A sunflower maze, the Kennilworth Aquatic Gardens when the lotuses are in bloom, and the National Arboretum are just a few spots on my DC-area list, and Prospect Park, Central Park, and the Brooklyn Botanical Garden are on my NYC list for after the long show days are over at NY NOW this summer. If you have any other flower recommendations, please send them my way!

  4. Art therapy. In 2017 I did a 100-day challenge to reawaken my artistic side as opposed to just my maker side and I loved it. I really don’t want the pressure of doing another long-term challenge, but about a month ago, I bought a fresh small 6”x6” sketchbook and I’m trying to fill it’s pages with new scenes. Lately I’ve been experimenting with watercolor paintings, and I’ve been loving the informality and imperfection of working in just colored pencil. This season, I hope to continue my practice, and venture into a new / old form- ceramics - which I love but haven’t explored with my own hands since high school. I signed up for an 8-week ceramics class at Kuzeh Pottery to shake up my routines and make space for making pottery, which is something that I’ve been saying I’ll do for a long time.

  5. Reading. Reading is something that restores me, but in our digital age, I rarely make time for books. I’ve had a stack of books to read staring at me for months, even years for some of them, and I’m determined to get back into them this season. Right now I’m reading Ta-Nehisi Coates’ We Were Eight Years in Power, and next I’m planning on diving into The Omnivore’s Dilemma. I have so many books on my list and love having an excuse to borrow them from the library. Libraries take me back to my youth, and tbh, I miss them.

  6. Exploration. Exploring museums, coffee shops, gardens, little towns, big cities, whatever I can explore. When I first started my business, my weekends were filled with markets and pop-ups, and I never had time to explore. As the business shifts to more of an online and wholesale focus, I’m very intentional on making time for exploration with my favorite co-pilot, or pilot most days since driving is not my favorite, my husband. And also spending time cultivating new friendships, old friendships, and more relationships with good people in cool spaces.

Essentially this season is about making space for me, and the things that I love - art and beautiful art spaces, yoga and slowness, good books, inspiring people, delicious croissants, and living well. It’s a challenge to keep up with and to continue to make a priority when you are a creative entrepreneur, but what I find when I let it go is that I become stale, unfocused, and uninspired. Summer in all it’s energy is also such a great time to reconnect with those things that are the most important. This sunny season is indulgent, and why not indulge in our own selves?