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Back To School Self-Care

back to school

Summer is almost over and the “Back to School” season is right around the corner. Students are probably getting overwhelmed and planning their back to school self-care routines but what about the teachers? I know you are expecting some self-care tips for all the students out there but this time’s different. As someone who works in education, I know how important self-care can be during the school year. So, today I wanted to share some tips to keep all the young teachers and support staff going through the year.

One of the biggest things I struggle with during the year is asking for help when I’m getting overwhelmed. Working in education, especially Special Education, is no easy task and it’s certainly not always easy to ask for help. Being a teacher, or support staff is a really stressful job. You might feel like you can’t ask for help but I promise that it’s okay. Asking for help has been one of the most difficult and helpful things I’ve ever learned.

Another tip I’d like to share with you is learning to practice mindfulness. This can be as simple as practicing meditation or conscious breathing exercises. Mindfulness might also come in the form of positive affirmations or acknowledging how you’re feeling. For me personally, acknowledging how I’m feeling throughout the day, week and even the year as a whole is a HUGE part of my self-care routine. I never really did that before and it made me feel like I was drowning. Now, I feel so much better about acknowledging my feelings. It allows me to reflect and take action, and it can do the same for you!

The final thing I’d like to share with you is an important one. Learn to set and maintain your boundaries during the school year. I know sometimes that school days can be stressful but don’t take your work or your stress home with you. It won’t do you any good there. I have done this all too often and it is so not worth the consequences that come with it. Your home life after school is for you to relax and take a breath, not for you to stress about work. Leave that stress in the classroom!

Back to school self-care is going to look different for every teacher and staff member out there. But no matter how you do it, remember to keep up with it because it work wonders for your mental health. It’ll keep you from getting burnt out too fast.

What self-care practices are you utilizing for the Back to School season?

Read the National Education Association’s article the Importance of Self-Care As a Teacher to learn why it truly matters.

Check out our Back To School Podcast here on TurningPointCT.org! 🙂

Summer Self-Care Matters Too!

blue illustrated hello summer facebook post

School’s out and summer is in full swing! Everyone’s so focused on having fun and going out that they forget to take care of themselves. I’m here to remind you that summer self-care is just as important as your regular routine!

I know that taking care of yourself probably isn’t your first thought during the summer but it really should be. I mean, don’t you want to feel good while you’re out doing doing fun things? The answer should be yes. Summer is the best time for self-care, the weather’s warm and there are so many things you can do to take care of yourself.

When I was younger, I didn’t care much about taking care of myself during the summertime, I just wanted to have fun. Now that I’m older, I know how important self-care is especially in the summer. I was going out with friends and going on vacation but it didn’t feel right because I wasn’t feeling good mentally or physically. I did those things anyways because I didn’t want it to keep me from the fun.

Having fun is great but so is feeling mentally and physically good, that’s why you can’t give up your self-care routine just because it’s summertime. Before you go out and do all those fun summer activities, make sure that you take the time to check-in with yourself.

Check out 15 Activities for Your Summer Self-Care Checklist from Mental Health First Aid for some self-care tips for the season!

Read Kailey’s post Getting Out In Nature Is My Self-Care right here on TurningPointCT.org as I’m sure she’ll be in nature all summer!

How I’ve Been Practicing Social Self-Care

The best breakfast from Muddy Waters on Bank Street

Last week, I shared different types of self-care and how you can practice them. So, this week, I’ve decided to put some time aside to practice a little social self-care. Just to refresh your memory, social self-care is setting time aside to nurture the important relationships in your life. Socializing is great for your mental health and has a variety of benefits. Social self-care is something that I often struggle with because I tend to shut people out when I’m feeling low instead of reaching out. I know I shouldn’t do that but honestly, I can’t help it.

Like I said, I’ve never been great at practicing social self-care. I’m trying to be better about it though, this weekend I took my little brother and two of my closest friends to my favorite breakfast place. It’s called Muddy Waters and it’s on Bank Street in New London, CT. They serve some of the best pastries, coffee and breakfast foods that I’ve ever had. I was incredibly excited to bring them all here because none of them had ever been there before and you can’t visit Bank Street without stopping here!

My friend Charisma & I

Spending the day out with my friends and my brother reminded me that it’s so important to maintain these relationships. I’m often on my own doing little tasks here and there but never taking much of a break. Charisma, Sienna and Dante are proof that taking the time to nourish your relationships can really go a long way. Spending time with them gave me a much needed break from all of the things that have been stressing me out. For a few hours, I had nothing to worry about but whether I was having a good time.

I will be spending more time nourishing the important relationships in my life because without them, I’m not sure what I would do. I never realized how important socializing and getting out with your friends was. I’m so used to drowning in my own misery and being alone that I forgot how wonderful it was to let go and just be with the people I love.

My brother Dante & my friend Sienna

Take care of your relationships and spend more time with your friends! It’s good for them and it’s most certainly good for you!

How are YOU practicing social self-care?

Check out Campus Well’s article Why Social Support Is The Most Overlooked Self-Care Routine on their website!

Read my post Things That Are Actually Self-Care But Seem Rude right here on TurningPointCT.org!

Self-Care Practices You Should Be Practicing

Many people view self-care practices as a luxury versus a priority. Taking care of ourselves should be just as important as anything else. It’s not only about pampering and relaxing. Self-care practices are for promoting better health and general wellbeing. There are self-care practices for every aspect of your life! There are practices to address your physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual health.

Physical Self-Care

Physical self-care is all about your body. It’s about making sure that the physical needs you have are being met. Physical needs can include sleep and diet habits. You should be asking yourself if you’re getting enough sleep or if you’re eating enough. Up until 2020, I really struggled with this. I wasn’t sleeping very much or eating well at all and my depression began to spiral. I was feeling stuck and I knew something had to change. Honestly, I just wanted to feel better. Now I eat better and I make sure to take care of myself though some days are still hard.

Mental Self-Care

Next, we’ll talk about your mental health. Mental health self-care practices involve keeping your brain active and staying healthy mentally. Practices for mental self-care can include doing puzzles, reading a book or even learning about something you’re interested in but it doesn’t stop there. You can practice mental self-care by also practicing self-love, self-gratitude and acceptance of yourself. When you are kinder to yourself, you can cultivate an inner dialogue that is healthier for you in the long run. Practicing self-love and acceptance is one of the best things I’ve ever taught myself to do. I don’t have as many negative thoughts about myself and I’m so much happier with who I am because of it.

Emotional Self-Care

Emotional self-care allows you become better aware of the emotions that you are feeling. It teaches you how to deal with emotions like anger or sadness with healthy coping skills versus trying to bottle it all up. You should be able to freely express and acknowledge the emotions that you feel. When you’re feeling emotions that make you feel uncomfortable, you should try talking to someone you trust. You can even try setting time aside for you to process your emotions and how they make you feel.

Social Self-Care

Believe it or not, socializing is actually great for your mental health. It’s also a critical part of self-care. While it is a critical piece, sometimes life gets crazy and you find yourself neglecting the important relationships in your life. Having close and intimate connections is vital to your overall wellbeing so you should be sure to care for them. The only way to ensure that you are taking care of these relationships is by putting time and effort into them. Unfortunately, remembering to take care of my close relationships is not exactly my strong suit. Before, I used to go weeks without speaking to many of my friends because I was in such a bad place but now I know when I’m feeling that way, that my friends and family are the people I should be reaching out to.

Spiritual Self-Care

Spiritual self-care involves nurturing your spirit. I know a lot of people see the world spiritual and automatically assume it’s about religion but what I’m talking about is not. Nurturing your spirit allows you the ability to develop a deeper sense of meaning, understanding, or connection with the universe and those who inhabit it. Practices for spiritual self-care can include activities such as meditation. I don’t personally practice spiritual self-care but it can certainly be good for you.

Self-care is so important. It’s not a luxury, it’s a necessity and we should all be practicing it. Please remember to take care of yourself because someone isn’t always going to be there to do it for you.

Check out Psychology Today‘s post Self-Care: 12 Ways To Take Better Care Of Yourself to learn how to improve your overall wellbeing!

Also read my post Things That Are Actually Self-Care But Seem Rude right here on TurningPointCT.org! 🙂

Things That Are Actually Self-Care But Seem Rude

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Sometimes, there are things we do and choices we make that might seem rude to other people. That’s not the case, it’s a form of self-care! We tend to put others feelings before our own and we should really stop doing that because what we need and want matters too. In fact, those needs and wants should be our first priority. I wanted to share a few things with you and remind you that these things you’re doing aren’t rude or selfish. I’ve shared a few below:

Saying No

It’s okay to say no. In fact, saying no is great for your mental health. It teaches the people around you what your boundaries are and how to respect them. Say no to things that make you unhappy or uncomfortable because you have to remember that what you need is just as important as everything else. When you choose to say yes when you really want to say no, you’re teaching yourself to put others before you. Don’t do that. Take care of you first!

Changing Your Mind

It’s okay to change your mind! Never let anyone make you feel bad for changing your mind. You are allowed to. We are always changing our minds. Think about it this way, when you were little you dreamed of becoming something but maybe that’s changed for you now. When I was younger, I wanted to be an artist and then a teacher. Eventually, I settled on being a nurse but I didn’t end up wanting to do that. Now, I’m working towards being a school psychologist and I’ve never been happier. I changed my mind and that’s okay. As we grow as individuals, we begin to learn what we like and what we don’t so never feel bad about changing your mind!

Setting Healthy Boundaries

Setting healthy boundaries is great for your mental health. It teaches the people around you respect as well as what your limits are. When you make your boundaries clear, people will begin understand what you are and aren’t okay with, and they’ll hopefully adjust their behavior to respect your boundaries. The people who don’t respect your boundaries are ones you should not want in your life. Healthy boundaries can also help you improve your self-esteem and make you more confident. Don’t be afraid to set boundaries, you deserve the same respect you give.

Putting Yourself First

This is a really big one. I struggle with this myself sometimes. Putting yourself first is NOT rude or selfish. It is the best thing that you can do for your mental health. We spend so much time trying to fulfil the needs of everyone around us and we forget about ourselves. I know that I’ve spent a majority of my time people pleasing and I forgot to take care of myself. What we need and want is just as important as what everyone else wants. Always put yourself first, no matter what anyone says.

Taking A Break

Please remind yourself that taking a break is okay. Sometimes, when we’ve got a thousand things to do we forget to take a break. We run ourselves into the ground until we’ve got nothing left to give. It shouldn’t be like that. We shouldn’t have to feel bad for needing to rest. Instead of running ourselves thin, we have to remind ourselves to take a break. We have to recharge and rest, it’s okay if everything doesn’t get done right away. Please know that it’s okay to need a break or rest.

Read The New York Times article Why Self-Care Isn’t Selfish to learn why practicing self-care is important and not selfish right on their website!

Check out Kailey’s post Getting Out In Nature Is My Self-Care here on TurningPointCT.org 🙂

Self-Care Plan: How To Create Your Own!

Welcome back to Self-care Sunday! This week I want to share with you the idea of a Self-care Plan. A self-care plan is a set a of tasks or activities that you should complete daily. Completing these activities will help you improve your physical and emotional well-being. Sticking to your self-care plan will lead to a fulfilling, happier, and healthier life for yourself. A plan like this can be extremely beneficial.

We don’t all need the same things to function and so that also means that we won’t have the same self-care plans. And that’s okay. We each have a special set of physical and emotional needs that are unique to us. The use of a self-care plan allows us to meet those needs with care. It allows you to better manage your stress and anxiety, improve your coping skills, and even put an end to harmful habits.

Creating your own plan can be very beneficial in improving your mental health. This plan is vital in managing your stress and anxiety. Taking the time to practice self-care allows your body to activate it’s parasympathetic nervous system. This nervous system is the one that allows your body and your mind to relax. Using a plan allows you time to rest which is important in maintaining stress and anxiety.

You can create your own plan in just a few steps!

  1. Start by taking a look at all of your current habits (the good AND bad ones). This will help you identify the habits that are most harmful to you so that you can get rid of them.
  2. After this you should take them time to identify your own needs. It’s helpful to compile a list of your emotional, mental, physical and professional needs as a good plan will take care of all these areas.
  3. Next you’ll want to think about what self-care practices will properly support those needs. Remember to make time for these practices so that you can keep up with your plan, this is important.
  4. Finally, get rid of your obstacles and I mean that. I’m talking about those harmful habits, get rid of them. You don’t need them anymore. You can take it one day at a time and try replacing one of your bad habits with a good self-care practice so that you can do better!

I have my own self-care plan in place, it’s not much but it’s what works for me! Saturday and Sunday are the days I practice a majority of my self-care because the during the week is usually hectic for me. These are the days when I have the most free time so I make sure to use these days to take care of me. Remember, self-care plans are different for everyone and that’s okay!

In order for these plans to be beneficial, you have to make sure that you keep up with it so you don’t lose any of your progress. Stick to your plan as best as you can and when things are becoming too overwhelming, remind yourself to rest. You should be caring for yourself like you do everything else because your mental health matters.

Check out Psychology Today’s post The Top 10 Tips For Beating Burnout!

Read Kailey’s video Easy Ways To Practice Self-Care right here on TurningPointCT.org 🙂

My Race Isn’t For You To Decide

All my life I’ve had people tell what I am and what I’m not based on how I look. My race isn’t for anyone else but me to decide. Growing up, a lot of people would assume I was Black, or Indian because that’s how I looked to them. Looking at me, you probably wouldn’t know that I was multiracial. Just because I don’t look it, doesn’t mean that you get to decide what I am.

I often tell people that I’m a “mutt” because I’m not just one nationality and neither are my parents. My mother is English, Irish, Filipino, Hawaiian, Portuguese and Chinese. And my father is African American, West Indian and Dutch (you couldn’t tell that by looking at him though LOL). Honestly, you wouldn’t have known that if I didn’t tell you. To most people, my dad’s just Black and my mom’s just Asian because that’s how they look. Which is what a lot of people do to me.

My dad & my mom

To most people, I am just Black because that’s how I present but I am more than that. I am multiracial and I love each and every part of who I am. Aside from being Black, a huge part of who I am is also being Asian. Like I said, my mother is mostly Asian. She raised my siblings and I on a lot of Asian culture. She definitely cooks some of the best homemade Asian food I’ve ever had. While you can definitely tell my mom is Asian, I don’t really look it (at leas according to most people). In fact, when I tell people that I am, they’re often kind of shocked or don’t even believe me.

Me & my cousin on my last day in Hawaii (we were moving to Connecticut)!

Once in middle school, I actually had someone tell me that being Hawaiian wasn’t even a real thing. I thought they were joking but they very much were not. When I was younger a lot of people would assume that I was Indian or Hispanic because that’s how I looked to them. I hated it. People would say things like, “You have beautiful Indian hair” or “Do you speak Spanish? You look Dominican.” I wasn’t those nationalities, I knew what I was but it still made me feel confused. Why would someone say something like that when it wasn’t true?

Eventually, I realized that it was because of how I looked. I didn’t look like all those nationalities that I listed before. Was I supposed to? Just to be clear, the answer is no. I’m mixed, I wouldn’t look like just any one nationality but I had dark skin and to a lot of people that would make me just Black. Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. When I got older, a woman told me that I got hired because I looked like I could speak Spanish. I couldn’t believe it, they didn’t ask me that in the interview nor was it a requirement.

A recent photo of my brothers and I with our mother

It still happens occasionally but I am truly proud to be multiracial. Because of my parents, nobody can place me into one racial category. I am so much more than that. I’m a blend of beautiful cultures and nationalities, I’m proud of that. I know that I may not look like those nationalities to you but they will always be a part of who I am. Nobody gets to tell me that except me. My race isn’t for you to decide.

Read NPR’s post Being Black In America: ‘We Have A Place In This World Too’, really great read!

Check out our Project Assistant Kailey’s post Being Mixed But White-Presenting here on TurningPointCT.org! 🙂

How Life Feels Is More Important Than How It Looks

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Social media and society have made us feel like we have to portray our lives a certain way. We want people to think that we live these exciting, beautiful lives when in reality, we’re kind of struggling to have them. How your life feels is much more important than how it looks. The people who see our lives have no idea how it feels and that matters.

Growing up I tried to portray myself and my life a certain way because I didn’t want people to know how miserable I was. It was exhausting and only made me feel more miserable than I already was. My life was falling apart before my eyes and all I cared about was what people would think if they saw it too. I felt like I was drowning in misery but nobody knew that because that’s not how I portrayed myself to the world. Though my life might have seemed like it was great, I was exhausted trying to keep the show going.

Eventually, I didn’t care what people thought about my life or how it might look to them. It wasn’t their life to live, it was mine. The life I present to the world is raw, authentic and truly me. Honestly, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love the adventures I go on, who I spend them with and everything in between. The life I am living, I am living for me and that makes me feel good. And when your life feels good, you give more room for positivity.

I promise you how your life feels is SO much more important than how it looks.

Check out Psychology Today’s article 10 Ways To Make Your Life Better, Starting Today!

Read Kailey’s post Avatar: The Last Airbender – Uncle Iroh’s Best Advice here on TurningPointCT.org!

In 2022, You’re Better Off…

There is no doubt that 2021 was a difficult year for a lot of us. For me personally, I learned a lot about myself and I’m finally understanding why I’m better off without somethings. There are so many things that I know now that I am better off without, things that need to be let go.

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You’re better off…

Choosing yourself than trying to convince someone to choose you.

You should not have to convince someone to choose you. Trying to convince someone to choose you shouldn’t be a thing. You are not an option, you are a priority. Your first priority is to always choose you. Commit to loving and trusting yourself above all and never be sorry for it. Even when it seems like choosing yourself might hurt someone else, put yourself first. Sometimes the choices you make that you thought would avoid hurting someone might hurt you more in the long run. You can only determine what’s best for you, not anyone else.

Being unapologetically “too much” than apologizing for being yourself.

Stop apologizing for being who you are. You deserve to be unapologetically yourself without someone telling you that you’re “too much”. You’re not too much, you are you and that’s the best thing you can be. You should never have to apologize for being yourself. And if that’s too much for someone, tell them to find less because you certainly deserve more.

Losing someone than losing yourself.

I don’t mean this is in the sense that someone has passed away but maybe there are friends, relatives or even romantic partners that you don’t want to lose. Sometimes losing those people is better than having to lose yourself. You should not have to lose who you are just to hold onto someone that’s not appreciating you for you. Holding onto who you are and being proud of that is much more important than someone who can’t see how spectacular you are.

Starting over than continuing something that no longer serves you.

It is okay to let go of things that are no longer making a difference for you. Starting over can be scary but I promise you are better off doing that than trying to continue with something that’s not working. Starting over can open so many new doors and opportunities for you. May even give you a chance to try something new and different. Don’t miss out on new things because you’re trying to make something work that clearly isn’t.

Being disappointed by the things you tried and failed than regretting the chances you never took.

It’s okay to feel disappointed when something you wanted to work out didn’t work out. All that matters is that you tried. It is so much better to have tried and failed than to not have tried at all. Those failures are meant to teach you, not discourage you. Having to live a life full of regret is much worse than having a few failures on your lineup. Keep trying!

What do you think you’re better off without in 2022?

Check out The Wall Street Journal’s article Modest New Year’s Resolutions for 2022!

Listen to TurningPointCT’s 2021 Winter Holidays & New Years Podcast right here on the website!

Positive Self-Love Affirmations

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Positive self-love affirmations can have a huge impact on both our self-esteem and our self-worth. Now, let’s talk about the difference between self-esteem and self-worth. Our self-esteem is often based on how much we like and appreciate ourselves for who we are. On the other hand, self-worth is naturally knowing that we have some sort of value outside of our own abilities.

We know that there is power in finding people or objects that will boost our confidence. We can’t always rely on outside entities to do this for us though. Sometimes, we have to be able to do it for ourselves. Honestly, I think that we should be our own biggest fan. Positive self-love affirmations can really help with this!

Believe it or not, the negative self-talk that we engage in is a learned behavior. The use of positive self-love affirmations can change negative self-talk. I mean this in the sense that it can decrease, and even stop, negative self-talk from happening. These affirmations help us to rewire our brains to accept more positivity.

You can practice self-love affirmations in a variety of ways! A lot of people, including myself, like to practice affirmations verbally to themselves. If you’re not into that, you can even practice it by writing your affirmations down somewhere. Some people even turn their affirmations into mantras for meditations. How you choose to do it is really up to you! It’s all about making YOU feel good!

Here are 3 self-love affirmations that I love:

  1. My being is worthy of love.
  2. I am whole just as I am.
  3. I learn and grow every day.

You can find more positive self-love affirmations here! 🙂

Also check out my post Reminding Yourself That You Are Enough here on TurningPointCT.org!

Why Dating Yourself Matters

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Have you ever heard the phrase, “you should take yourself on a date”? I know it might sound kind of silly but it’s actually worth trying. Dating yourself isn’t just something you do because you aren’t receiving the affection or attention that you need from your partner or you just got out of a bad relationship and need to show yourself some love. You should be doing this regardless of where you’re at in life or your relationship status.

Dating yourself is a form of self-love AND self-care. This form of self-love and self-care focuses on showing yourself appreciation, love, and respect. By doing this you are teaching yourself metaphorically how to fill your cup before you fill those of others. Self-love is crucial in preserving positive, healthy self-esteem and emotional health. Self-love is so important and also rewarding, which is why I think dating yourself should be a part of your everyday self-care.

Taking yourself on a date can mean anything, it just has to be about you! One of my favorite dates to take myself on is a coffee date. I love pretty much every coffee out there so this is something I really enjoy. Sometimes, I like to go get iced coffee and enjoy my time alone especially when I’m not feeling so great. I take this time alone to reflect on my emotions and how they’re affecting me. I try to remind myself that I will be okay, even if it doesn’t feel that way. This time alone to reflect and appreciate yourself is crucial in maintaining our mental health.

As corny as it sounds, I urge you to take yourself on a date and really spoil yourself. You deserve it. You deserve to feel loved, appreciated and everything in between, even if those feelings have to come from you.

What kind of dates have you taken yourself on? I’d love to hear all about it!

You can learn more about dating yourself here! 🙂

Please also check out my post Reminding Yourself That You Are Enough here on TurningPointCT!

Why Saying No Is Okay

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Saying no can be incredibly difficult sometimes. This is because we think that saying no might come off as rude or selfish depending on the situation. And we don’t want that. Instead, we tend to put aside our feelings, and sometimes our morals, just to people-please. But I want you to know that saying no is okay.

I’ll be the first to say that I’ve always been a people-pleaser. Honestly, I don’t people-please as much now, but I used to do it all the time before. I never felt like I could say no to people and that got me into a lot of horrible situations. Situations that I really should have stood my ground in. Learning to say no is something that took me a really long time to understand. I’d just say yes to everything until I was physically and emotionally exhausted. I knew that I had to do something about it.

I was going to have to learn to say no. And eventually I would learn that on my own. I would like to pass that lesson onto you. One of our greatest superpowers is saying no, but this is something that we don’t always remember. Sometimes we don’t say no to things that we aren’t interested in because we don’t want to seem rude or even selfish. Saying no actually means you’re aware of your own worth and respect yourself enough to stick up for what you believe in.

Please remember that saying no is okay. Deciding what we’re okay and not okay with is entirely our choice, not anyone else’s. Saying no allows us to set our own boundaries with others. Without this power, people may take advantage of us or treat us like door mats. We absolutely cannot let them. It is absolutely better to say no to things you’re uncomfortable with than to suffer through it for the sake of someone else.

Your thoughts and emotions are more important than trying to please everyone, don’t forget that. Saying no is your right.

I’ve included a link to PsychCentral’s article Saying No (Kindly) And Then Letting Go here! It was a really great read.

When In Doubt, Paint Your Nails

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Welcome back to Self-care Sunday! This week I want to talk about pampering! Pampering yourself is one of the best forms of self-care because it’s your chance to really take care of you. I never made time for self-care and pampering before but it’s now a vital part of my routine. Without it, I know I would absolutely fall apart. I love pampering myself and I do it in more ways than one. Pampering is different for everyone and that’s okay because it’s supposed to be all about YOU!

For me, pampering means sitting down to paint my nails, taking a bubble bath, or even just taking a nap. I love all of those things but painting my nails is one of my favorite things to do. As silly as it sounds, I change my nail color every two weeks. That might sound ridiculous to some people because it’s quite a bit of work but I love doing it. I love starting over, filing my nails, and painting a fresh coat of new color on my nails.

Bare nails just aren’t for me. I need a little touch of color to look at every once in a while. While I love painting my nails, I’m also incredibly impatient so I lean towards “quick dry” polishes. Let me tell you, they are absolutely FANTASTIC. Some of the best brands include Sally Hansen and Maybelline. Sally Hansen’s Insta-Dri polish is in my top 5, the colors are beautiful and it dries in minutes. Although Sally Hansen is fantastic, Maybelline has a line of polishes called Fast Gel, these are great for when you want a quick gel manicure. These two are my absolute favorites, I think I’ll always want to buy them.

I know that painting your nails may not be for everyone but there are other ways to pamper yourself! It could be as simple as lighting a candle and sitting down with a good book. Or it could be treating yourself to a massage. The possibilities for pampering are totally endless! Pampering is whatever you want it to be. As long as it is something that brings you joy, then who cares what it is? You are allowed to do things for YOU, everyone else has to come second sometimes. NEVER let anyone make you feel guilty for taking the time to take care of yourself, you deserve that time.

What are some things that you consider to be pampering? I’d love to hear about it!

And The Baker’s Gonna Bake, Bake, Bake!

Happy Self-care Sunday everyone! I hope that you’ve all had a great week and a restful weekend. Self-care is such an important part of maintaining your mental health. I often found myself putting other people and their needs before my own, and that really takes a toll on your mental health. You have to remember to take care of YOU too.

Gluten-free chocolate chip coconut scones, yum! 🙂

There are so many different forms of self-care that people practice. One of my favorite personal forms of self-care is baking. I’ve loved baking since I was a little girl, my dad used to bake a lot when I was growing up. The warm, delicious aromas of fresh baked goods has always been soothing to me. If I was having a bad day, the smell of fresh brownies being baked would always turn my day around.

When I was old enough to bake on my own, I baked as often as I could. It was mostly simple treats like cupcakes or brownies but I absolutely loved it. I must have baked something at least once a week, it was just my way of relaxing. Baking gave me a a chance to just focus on myself and what I was making, plus my family always enjoyed the treats I made.

These are my ‘famous’ tres leche cupcakes, my friends and family always ask me to make these!

In the last few years, I’ve learned to make so many new things. Things that I never thought I’d be making. I’ve made so many different kinds of breads, scones, muffins and more! I could list everything I’ve ever made but that’s just so many! I amaze myself every single time I try a new recipe and it comes out better than expected.

This is my favorite form of self-care because it’s something that genuinely brings me joy when I am having a hard time. I think I’ll always love baking, I mean how could you not?

Two fresh loaves of homemade brioche bread, this is definitely one of my favorite bread recipes to make!

What’s your favorite thing to bake? 🙂