February is coming… the shortest month of the year but it always feels the longest. It’s cold, dark and it feels like you haven’t seen the warm sun in years. All you feel like doing is hibernating in your house with a fuzzy blanket and Netflix. It’s the “February Blues” and we want winter to be over!
Ok, so there’s no question that February is my least favourite month (Sorry Dad, I know it’s your birthday month). How can we make it through this miserable time of year? Focus on self care! What is self care? Well, it’s taking time out of our crazy schedules to focus on things that reduce your stress, improve your wellbeing or quite simply, make you happy.
Here are some simple suggestions to help get you started with your self-care practice
This can be something you do at the beginning or end of your day. It doesn’t have to take long but this can be a great way to bring some mindfulness into your daily life. Meditation can reduce stress, increase happiness and can increase concentration and self awareness. Have a look online. There are a ton of apps out there that can help guide you in your meditation practice.
Spending time outside in nature has shown to decrease stress. I know, it’s cold out there but there are lots of fun winter activities that you can be apart of. You don’t have to go too far to experience nature. Toronto has a great outdoor trail system where you can actually see some wildlife (I’ve seen both deer and fox on the Lower Don Trail). You forget that you’re actually in the city. Skiing, skating, snowshoeing, and dog sledding are all fun activities that can get you outside and get that body moving during the cold month of February.
Go for a massage
Take an hour out of your day and get a massage. I know, I’m an RMT and a bit biased on this, but having a massage is a great way to let go of the stress and tension in our bodies. I don’t know how many people have said while on my table “Wow I didn’t realize how tight I was.” Massage can help to reduce anxiety, improve sleep, reduce pain, and improve immunity.
Remember, Self-care doesn’t have to take up a lot of your time. By just adding some little things that make you smile or allow you to let go of the stresses in your daily life, can provide you with a more balanced lifestyle.
Registered Massage Therapist
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