Rituals can enhance your life by reducing stress, putting you more in touch with the present moment, and connecting your body, mind and spirit. These rituals don’t have to be religious or grandiose. It’s the small rituals in our life - performed with consistency and care - that make a big difference. Whether you realize it or not, your day is already full of self-care routines, such as brushing your teeth, bathing or combing your hair. However, when we put intention and meaning into these small practices, they can transform into impactful rituals. Read on to learn how you can create more balance in your life by incorporating wellness rituals to your every day.
If your goal is to get into a positive, balanced and productive mindset, mornings are essential. Fresh from sleep, this is the time when you set the tone for the rest of the day. Especially if you have a busy day ahead, try to wake up an hour before you leave the house so that you have time to calmly create a solid and sound base for the rest of your day.
While you’re having breakfast or your morning coffee, set your intentions for the day and run through a list of things that you would like to accomplish - whether it’s for work, your personal life or for your family and friends. If you’re running short on time, save time by multi-tasking such as using your shower or toothbrush time to set affirmations. You can even write them on Post-It notes and leave them on your bathroom mirror.
If you’re in need of extra grounding, carve out some time in the morning to bring more mindfulness into your day by lighting some incense or using some aromatherapy and do a guided meditation or breathing exercise. You can also use this time to visualize what you most want in your life. You’ll be surprised how much a simple practice like this can impact your life.
Once you get your day started right, the rest of your day can flow with more ease. Mornings are the foundation of your day so it’s important to utilize them to your best ability.
During the day it can be difficult to remember to be mindful, especially if you’re particularly busy. However, that’s all the more reason why you need to make time for wellness rituals. To stay centred and calm throughout your day, you can place a notification or alarm to remind yourself to sit or stand straight and be conscious of your inhale and exhale for at least 10 counts. Try to slow down your breath to 6 counts in and 6 counts out so that your nervous system has time and space to relax and recalibrate. Take deep belly breathes and if you’re extra stressed, exhale through your mouth.
You may also incorporate ritual into your lunch break by saying a few words of gratitude before a meal, having your lunch outdoors by your favourite tree or going for a quick yoga class, run or meditation during your lunch hour.
Mid-afternoon you can also commit slowing down and brewing a pot of your favourite herbal tea. During your tea ritual, be mindful throughout the entire process - while you prepare the tea, as you enjoy the tea and while you clean your mug.
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The evening time, when your day starts to unwind, is the time for reflection and relaxation. Incorporating wellness rituals into your nighttime routine is easy. When you get home, hop into the shower or bath and use this time to visualize the stresses of the day melting away. Using a relaxing aromatherapy bath and body products such as lavender or geranium can help you bring your attention to the present moment.
Establishing a solid skincare routine can also be a beautiful self-care ritual where you lovingly slather yourself in luxurious creams and spray your skin with nourishing tonics and serums. While you’re doing your skincare routine, you can make it extra nurturing by reciting positive affirmations about yourself.
Spending time with your loved ones is an important aspect of your wellbeing. So it’s important to take the time to incorporate quality time with your friends and family. Make it a point to unwind with your partner on the couch after dinner while sharing your day and emotions with them. If you have children, tucking them into bed with a bedtime story is also a beautiful ritual.
Before you nod off to sleep, you can also spend a few moments journaling and writing down things that might be weighing heavy on your mind or journaling about your hopes, goals and desires. Before your head hits the pillow, spend a few minutes massaging your favourite aromatherapy oil onto your pulse points to ensure you have a restful night of sleep.
By Marisse Gabrielle Reyes