The Courageous act of self care 
Valentines Day has had a few weird and wonderful versions along the way, we’ve had the old tale of slaughtering goats which lead to slapping women with goat hides to signify fertility - crazy sh*t went on back then! We’ve had the legend of Cupid and his powerful bow and the most recent trend of showering our partners with chocolates, flowers and an inspiring Instagram quote..... 
What is it about Valentine’s Day that not only creates a sense of societal judgment around whether or not you are dating someone for the grand event but it also seems to makes us totally abandon ourselves! (what is that all about?!) 
Somewhere along the line we have collected the idea that delivering our love and affection elsewhere is a better offering than giving it directly to ourselves. 
When I was a teenager Valentine’s Day felt like it was only available to certain people..... For far too long I abandoned myself and didn’t see my worth, I could not see the value in self care either, no one explained to me what it meant and what it would feel like to actually gift myself time. Self care looks and feels so different for so many and I just didn’t get it.
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For years I drifted around the idea of self care. When I finally grew into what I enjoyed & what felt good it was always something I would have to do and pay for. 
I would spend hours trawling the web and socials for the latest trends in hair and make up only to get someone else to help me achieve the finished look. I would leave the experience feeling pleased with myself knowing I had just done my ‘self care day’ and tick it off the list as if it was another simple chore. A ‘self care day’ was a rare occasion and usually booked in as a reward after a long stint of work burn out.
My own experience of self care has evolved over the years, I am now in my late 30’s and trust me it takes serious ‘COURAGE’ to show up for myself. In 2014 I made a choice to get to know myself better and I have been riding that beautiful wave ever since. I dreamt that one day I would be able to understand why I am the way I am. I look back and consider why I didn’t choose to do this earlier, I should’ve been looking after myself better, sooner. I now treat myself to different forms of Therapy and consistently find new ways to connect my body and mind. Self care is a most beautiful, courageous act in itself, we don’t get to hide from our truth. Our past simmers and moves through all our present experiences, I have learnt that the more I listen and honour myself, the better I can honour those around me. Self exploration doesn’t need to be scary, it can become a beautiful adventure 
This year I encourage you to get intimate with yourself. When I use the word intimate I mean it in every sense of the word, sexually, physically, emotionally & spiritually. 
For so many women something simple like allowing time for self care is one of the hardest things they could do. I don’t know about you but It takes huge ‘COURAGE’ for me to show up and face off with myself each and every day. We all have our own beautiful story that creates all kinds of feels and this almost always dictates how we show up in the world. 
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Only when we can see ourselves as someone who is deserving of love and acceptance can we then bring in beautiful self care routines. When we search for external validation and acceptance from others it can be tricky to navigate what we want for ourselves. This past year has shown us that time by ourselves doesn’t necessarily need to lead to loneliness and low self care, we absolutely can show ourselves compassion and love even in tough times. 
Each morning when you wake up have a super quick journaling sesh and ask yourself these treats.....
  • What would it feel like to gift myself some time? 
  • How can I honour myself today?
  • How can I honour my body today?
Take a moment to weave your way through the classic self sabotage process...... 
“ I don’t have time”
“ I don’t deserve this“
“ There are others worse off than me”
Now check yourself...... Get present with a breath and let’s get busy creating our very own Nourishment Menu!!!!!!
Consider these first......
  • What gives me all the feels?
  • When do I feel Zen AF? 
  • How do I get beautiful bursts of energy? 
As you are creating your own menu consider how you FEEL as you go through it. When we understand WHY we do something we can connect to the story behind it - we all have a beautiful story but we run different versions of it depending on our conditioning and beliefs from adult and childhood experiences. 
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Below is a mock up Nourishment Menu - a few things my friends and I have tried along the way
  • Hanging out in a green space (nature) 
  • Gardening
  • Creative colouring/drawing 
  • Chilled sounds & Meditation 
  • Play a game 
  • Wearing beautiful underwear 
  • Do your hair & make up
  • Bake something yummy 
  • Lose yourself in a fabulous book or Audible
  • Sofa snuggling & box sets
  • Nap time 
  • Group Circle - Safe space to show up authentically 
  • Jigsaw Puzzle
  • Move your body - intuitive movement
  • Dance like no one is watching 
  • Journaling around any thoughts/feelings you have 
  • Chakra body scans
  • Therapy 
  • Learn a new skill 
  • A fancy pants Bubble Bath 
  • Yoni fun 😘
And if all else fails, put your face on a fluffy cat 
Self care evolves, it doesn’t need to be complicated. Gift yourself the moments you dream of, embrace what feels good for you and be accountable for where your own emotions take you ❤️
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This year for me is all about ‘COURAGE’ and there is no bigger courageous act than diving deeper into who you are. 
I truly hope you recognise and appreciate your own ‘COURAGE’ this year, show up for yourself in this world and know that you are worthy just by being you 💕
I’ll be celebrating myself and all of you on our day of self love.
 GUEST Courage BLOG by The Soul Project Babe - Steph!
Steph xx

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