Embrace autumn with these seven peaceful poses.
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If you’re a busy millennial like me, sometimes you forget to take time to practice self-care. I am a full-time public servant, a part-time masters student at Boston University, a full-time lifestyle blogger...and many times I’m assisting my family with the care of my newborn nieces. With all that going on, it's imperative that I take at least one day to address my self-care needs. That whole “sleep when you’re dead” mentality is probably one of the most problematic lifestyles to lead. Proper self-care has many benefits for your physical, spiritual, and emotional needs. And if you truly practice self-care regularly, you ultimately become a better person for those around you.
With that said, I take Self-Care Saturdays very seriously. My ideal Self-Care Saturday starts off with waking up at 10:00 am to drop off laundry. Then, once I’ve gotten the heavy lifting out of the way, I start addressing my body’s physical needs. One activity I recently picked up was boxing! If you’re in the Boston area and you have the MINDBODY app, you should check out Peter Welch’s Gym. Boxing is a full-body workout, and it allows you to take out all of your stress on a punching bag or in the ring. The first time I used MINDBODY to book a class, my first session was free! Now, boxing has been a permanent part of my Self-Care Saturday routine.
The next step in my Self-Care Saturday is going to the spa to get a facial and massage. Let’s face it, between sweating at the gym, dealing with everyday emotions, and the all-nighters that us grad students have to pull off, our bodies need lots of hydration and tension release. I never skip a Saturday at the spa because my facials have been vital to keeping my skin clear, and my massages release knots in my back. I am not a princess by any means; however, you don’t realize how important it is to get rid of tension in your back and your face until you start aging.
Now that I am fully relaxed, it doesn’t hurt to head to a salon to get my hair and nails done. Honestly, if I wake up slightly under the weather, a great pick-me-up is investing in my outside appearance. A little polishing here and there goes a long way. By looking through the MINDBODY app, I identified three new salons that do natural hair. This is pretty exciting for me, because I was having a hard time finding one near me.
Lastly, before the ladies call me to paint the town red; I have to make sure I curl up with a good book that has nothing to do with work or school. Reading has always provided me solace in the craziest of times. When my emotions are high, reading my favorite fashion book or even Harry Potter book gives me great vibes. Sometimes I read for hours then take a nap on some fresh new sheets to conclude the day.
My Saturdays often feel revolutionary because my week is so all over the place. For this reason alone, I am such a big proponent for taking time to rest, recoup, and rejuvenate!
The intentions we set in our daily lives are often methods for healing wounds, whether they’re self-inflicted or have been passed down to us by others. Developing a conscious practice to get rid of negative thoughts or feelings we’re holding onto can help us move in a more positive direction toward letting go, healing, and being present.
Moving intentionally within our bodies allows us to fully notice how they feel so we can acknowledge and target the right areas. Some days we struggle to work hard enough while others, we push ourselves too hard! We do this both in class and in other areas of our life. It's important to remember to understand our bodies’ rhythms or fatigue while making space for our humanness, feelings, or need to be vulnerable.
Here are a few simple guidelines for following intentions during your workout:
Remember that just like in life, taking a moment to pause and build the appropriate foundation will undoubtedly support you to be 100% successful on your journey. At The Dailey Method, we refer to this kind of mindful exercise as a “meditation in movement” and begin our practice with intentions. During the warmup, instructors encourage students to set an intention for their workout, even if it’s just a focus on breath, and then revisit it during their final resting pose. Often, we associate these goals with our Word of the Month, a specific theme to help guide our practice each month. But there are so many intentions to choose from—moving with your breath, moving with grace, forgiving yourself, shining your light out, the options are limitless, and you can alter them each day depending on where you are right here and right now.
“Personally, I am so grateful for this process being part of my Dailey practice,” says Jill Dailey, founder of The Dailey Method. “It is a built-in opportunity for me to stay in the present, and when I wander (because of course I do!) a tool to guide my presence back to the here and now.”
When the workout gets challenging or you feel like giving up at any point during class, set an intention to pause and remember the fact that we are all on this same path, doing this exercise together. You have all the tools you need to be successful—even if it means taking a quick rest or resetting your alignment! Don’t compare yourself to others; just focus on yourself and your goals for the workout. Remember why you’re there.
As you leave class, move with deliberation and show up at your next appointment, event, family gathering, or grocery shopping excursion as the greatest version of you. You just rocked your class and brought effort, strength, perseverance, and commitment. Acknowledge that and bring it with you. Don't forget about the intentions you set during class; figure out how you can apply them to other areas of your life!
Make moving with intention part of your next workout by taking a class at The Dailey Method near you today!