CULTURE

5 Step Guide for Your Complete Festive Season Self-Care

Festivals are a time of celebration and sharing happiness, but it can be easy to get carried away in all the festive activities and forget to look after yourself. To unwind and rejuvenate yourself during this busy time, follow this complete 5-step self-care guide.

By SHREYA MAJI

5 Step Guide for Your Complete Festive Season Self-Care

With the vibrant season of Indian festivals just around the corner, there will be many exciting new additions to your daily to-do lists. Planning, shopping for gifts, decorating your home, cooking elaborate meals, socialising, and visiting your family—the festivals and all their associated activities bring with them their own share of joy and happiness. But in your busy schedule, making time to take care of yourself and your own needs can take a backseat. Staying on top of things is key to having the most fun during these few days, and self-care is part of how you can enjoy this time without getting overwhelmed or feeling stressed.

Self-care is defined by the World Health Organisation as the process of taking care of yourself to maintain health, improve productivity and prevent disease. It might look different for different people based on their individual needs, but generally, self-care helps you de-stress and take care of your body and mind so that you are well-equipped to handle your daily challenges, and have more energy and enthusiasm to deal with them. Keeping your stress levels low and feeling energised is especially important during the festive times. Some mistakenly think of self-care as a luxury, but that is far from the truth: taking a little time for yourself out of your busy schedule to unwind and relax does not have to be an expensive endeavour. Here’s how you can easily take care of yourself in 5 simple steps during the festive season.

 


Step 1: Treat yourself to a face massage
Skin care is slowly becoming synonymous with self-care: this is because while your skincare routine might be for maintaining healthy skin, taking 10 minutes every day at the beginning and end of your day to go through the steps of your skincare regimen can be relaxing and therapeutic, as it is a time reserved just for yourself. Facial massage is an excellent way to get started on your self-care routine. Various studies, such as research done by L’Oréal Research and Innovation, Chevilly Larue, France, show that facial massages can help in increasing blood circulation and alleviate headaches, reduce tension from your facial muscles, and also help you achieve that glowy skin you want for the festive season.

 

 

To give yourself a massage from the comfort of your home, cleanse your face and hands. Take a good amount of your choice of serum, facial oil or moisturiser to make the massage smooth. You can choose from a variety of techniques, or make use of massage tools if you have any, such as the Gua Sha or a jade roller. For a simple massage, do the following steps, focusing on each for about 20 to 30 seconds. Remember not to tug on your skin too roughly.

  • Start from massaging your temples and inwards on your forehead with your fingers in small circular motions.
  • Use your index and middle fingers to press under your eyes, and move slowly upwards to your temples.
  • Use your fingertips to press under your cheekbones and gently move outwards to the sides of your face.
  • Press your thumbs into your chin and glide them outwards along your jaw.

 

Step 2: Relax with the help of guided meditation
Meditation is not only a way to de-stress and unwind after an exhausting day, but it can also help you to develop a deeper connection with yourself, and become more mindful in your work and your relationships. According to a 2018 study published in Journal of Consulting Psychology, meditation can also help you deal with signs of anxiety. Guided meditations are led by an experienced meditation teacher, and can be helpful for if you are new to the practice. Click here for a complete guide to a session of relaxing meditation by Eddie Stern, New York based yoga teacher, author and meditation expert.

 

Step 3: Make a wellness shot or a bowl of comfort food
Looking after your nutrition and giving your body adequate fuel to run on is an essential part of physical self-care. Too much stress has been proven to suppress your immune system, making you prone to falling sick often, which is something all of us would want to avoid during festivals. According to the June 2016 review in the Journal of Nutrition and Food Sciences, a well-balanced and nutritious diet was the most important ingredient for good health. Try out this nutritious Sweet Potato Stew for comfort in a bowl, or this Chocolate Chip Bar With Peanut Butter as a healthy sweet treat. Make yourself a DIY wellness shot for a quick supply of vital vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

 

Step 4: Take out some time for a quick session of restorative yoga
For your body to run efficiently and for your mind to think better, nothing is more effective than yoga. Yoga can be both relaxing and rejuvenating, helping you to recharge your body and mind, improving your mood and helping you to sleep better. Yoga teacher and author, Ira Trivedi suggests the shashankasana (the rabbit pose), which improves blood circulation in your upper body, gets rid of headaches, and relaxes your muscles. It can also be effective in reducing digestive issues caused by erratic eating during festivals.

 

How to do Shashankasana:

  • Kneel on the ground with your palms resting on your thighs in Vajrasana position.
  • Inhale and raise your arms above your head, keeping them shoulder width apart and your elbows straight.
  • Exhale slowly and bend your torso forwards until your forehead touches the ground.
  • Bend your elbows a little and rest your arms on the ground. Relax and take deep breaths.


Step 5: Connect with Your Friends and Loved Ones
When life gets busy, it can be hard to maintain relationships and keep up connections. But socialisation is an essential part of self-care. Loneliness can make you feel isolated and increase your feelings of anxiety and stress, but socialising will help you feel included and cared for. In times of distress, it is important for you to have a network of loved ones that you can reach out to for your physical and emotional needs. Give your close friends a call and have a good laugh with them. Take some time to spend with your family outside of the busy schedule of festivities, where you do something relaxing like watch your favourite film together or share responsibilities to cook a quick meal. Go on a short drive with your friends and put on your favourite music to relax and lift your mood instantly.

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