Self care is easy

self-care isn’t Just bath bombs and face masks

Self-care is simpler than you think.

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What's first comes to mind when you hear the words "self-care"? If it's photos of glamorous celebrities, showing off their fluffy white robes, while wearing a face mask and holding an expensive bath bomb, you're not alone.

Recently, self-care has become so trendy that posting videos of your bath bomb dissolving into water or showing off your freaky new face mask look receives praise and increases your social media likes exponentially.

It's hard not to feel slightly deflated if you're unable to practice self-care in a way that's been so glorified and saturated all over social media. To start, self-care doesn't have to be expensive, and if the price stresses you out, it's doing the opposite of its intention. There are a lot of different ways that you can take care of yourself and are little self-care practices that you can do every day that aren't quite as glamorous or Instagramable. And that's okay.

Self-care has helped me do more than simply exist in the chaos that is NYC and life as a full-time graduate student. I want to emphasize that like many other skills, self-care is a practice and takes time to get the hang of, and therefore it is important not to be too hard on yourself while you're just starting out.

Self-care looks different for everyone. It's about nourishing yourself throughout the day—both physically and emotionally. This helps me feel less burnt out, more energized, and more able to do everything that I need to do. I often feel anxious, drained, and irritable when I haven't engaged in enough self-care. In these times, it's glaringly obvious to me that I need to make myself more of a priority and slow down, even just briefly.

As someone who struggles with mental health, it is important that I prioritize my well-being and take care of myself. I've done the "too busy to slow down, never stop, never take care of yourself" thing before, and spoiler alert-- it doesn't end well. By not actively engaging in self-care, I'm passively hurting my mental health.

There are a number of simple things I do for self-care that do wonders for me. This means remembering to take my medication every day, morning and evening, even when I'm in a rush. It means that I always make sure I'm eating consistently throughout the day and that I drink lots of water. It means that sometimes I need to say "no" to plans so that I have time to rest and recharge. It also means setting boundaries in my relationships and working on my communication with others. And sometimes, it can be as simple as taking extra time when I get home at night to take off my makeup with a face wash that smells good instead of using a makeup wipe.

I encourage you to find a self-care routine that not only feels accessible and simple to do but something that's unique to you. That could mean that you decide to spend a little extra time in the morning making yourself a cup of tea and reading or going for a run, or painting. The point is, self-care is necessary and unique to each individual person. I've noticed that my mental health has improved and I've felt happier as I engage in self-care. It takes time to find the right balance, and again, that's okay, but you'll never know what will work and make you feel great if you don't try. It's important that we take care of ourselves for all of the time that we have here in this world.

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20 Small Tattoos With Big Meanings

Tattoos with meaning you can't deny.
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It's tough to find perfect tattoos with meaning.

You probably want something permanent on your body to mean something deeply, but how do you choose a tattoo that will still be significant in 5, 10, 15, or 50 years? Over time, tattoos have lost much of their stigma and many people consider them a form of art, but it's still possible to get a tattoo you regret.

So here are 20 tattoos you can't go wrong with. Each tattoo has its own unique meaning, but don't blame me if you still have to deal with questions that everyone with a tattoo is tired of hearing!

SEE RELATED: "Please Stop Asking What My Tattoos Mean"

1. A semicolon indicates a pause in a sentence but does not end. Sometimes it seems like you may have stopped, but you choose to continue on.


2. "A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor."


3. Top symbol: unclosed delta symbol which represents open to change. Bottom symbol: strategy.


4. "There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls."


5. Viking symbol meaning "create your own reality."


6. Greek symbol of Inguz: Where there's a will, there's a way.

7. Psalm 18:33 "He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights."


8. 'Ohm' tattoo that represents 4 different states of consciousness and a world of illusion: waking (jagrat), dreaming (swapna), deep sleep (sushupti), transcendental state (turiya) and world of illusion (maya).


9. Alchemy: symbolizes copper, means love, balance, feminine beauty, and artistic creativity.


10. The Greek word “Meraki" means to do something with soul, passion, love, and creativity or to put yourself into whatever you do.


11. Malin (Skövde, Sweden) – you have to face setbacks to be able to go forward.

12. Symbol meaning "thief" from "The Hobbit." It was the rune Gandalf etched into Bilbo's door so the dwarves could find his house.


13. “Lux in tenebris" means “light in darkness."

14. Anchor Tattoo: symbolizing strength and stability, something (or someone) who holds you in place, and provides you the strength to hold on no matter how rough things get.

15."Ad Maiora" is translated literally as “Towards greater things." It is a formula of greeting used to wish more success in life, career or love.


16. A glyph means “explore." It was meant as a reminder for me to never stop exploring.

17. "Aut inveniam viam aut faciam," meaning roughly, "Either I shall find a way, or I will make one."


18. Lotus Flower. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives forth the flower's first and most literal meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment.

19. The zen (or ensō) circle to me represents enlightenment, the universe and the strength we all have inside of us.

20. Two meanings. The moon affirms life. It looks as if it is constantly changing. Can remind us of the inconsistency of life. It also symbolizes the continuous circular nature of time and even karma.


SEE ALSO: Sorry That You're Offended, But I Won't Apologize For My Tattoos


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10 Things You Should Think To Yourself Every Time You Look In The Mirror

There is more to us than what we see in the mirror.

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I know I am not the only one when I look at the mirror that tends to notice the negatives and things I wish would change about myself. I am my own worst critic, and sometimes I wish the one thing I could change about myself is the way I view myself. Whether we are 100% confident with the way we look or we struggle each day looking in the mirror, let's all work to think these 10 thoughts every time we take a glance in the mirror.

1. My hair might not be "perfect," but that is OK 

Princess Dairies

Whether you have long straight hair, short curly hair, or no hair at all, it is okay. Understand that each of us is cut from a different cloth, making us each unique and perfect the way we are. Know that no amount of frizz, texture, or color will decide what is considered the perfect hairstyle.

2. I am more than the size of my clothes 

Size Doesn't Matter

The number on the waistline of your jeans and the tag on your shirt is not a rank of who you are. Don't let a number decide how you feel about yourself because you're worth more. There's a difference between being excited because you are losing or gaining weight on purpose, and you've changed in size. That's a goal you set out to achieve and should be proud of for accomplishing.

3. My legs may jiggle, but they help carry me through the best and worst times  

Running

Who honestly cares about you having a thigh gap beside you? No matter your physical strength, your legs are strong, and they help move you every step you take. Be proud of them, be proud of you.

4. Beauty is not one size fits all 

Body Positivity

This world is filled with all sorts of people, and we all look different. Understanding and loving the diversity that this world brings will help you find the much-needed acceptance and love from yourself.

5. I'm going to be me today, bumps and all 

I'm just me.

You are not a walking, talking, real-life photoshopped photo. No matter how hard it is to admit, we all have our bumps on our skin. We can't let them hold us back.

6. My superpower is being me 

Behind the scenes

We all have our own weaknesses, strengths, and little personality quirks that make us who we are. Beauty is not just on the outside. We have so much inner beauty with who we are, and understanding that you are a gift to this world is something we need to remind ourselves every day.

7. My body is always ready for a swimsuit 

Every body is a swimsuit body

Need to know how to get a swimsuit body? Put on a swimsuit, and there you go! I think we all struggle during the time of year when the temperatures rise and the idea of strolling around in a swimsuit, whether a bikini, one piece or swim trunks.

8. I change for me, not you 

No Way

If you decide to lose weight, gain weight, change your style, or anything, that is okay. It is your life, and you shouldn't change yourself for others. If you make these changes, do them solely for yourself—not your family, best friend, significant other, or anyone.

9. My self-worth isn't defined by others 

I am amazing.

It can be easy to fall into the trap of listening to critics about yourself, and something we all need to realize that we are worth more than gold. We shouldn't decide our value based on other people, because, in the end, they don't know the full picture of us. The only person who does is yourself.

10.  I love me 

Learn to love yourself.

To love yourself is to embrace all of the good and bad things about yourself, and then understand each little part about yourself makes you. If you can't love yourself, who can? Loving yourself isn't easy, but in the end, is 100% worth it.

Whether you have these written on Post-It notes stuck to your mirror or these are mantras you say in your mind each morning, these thoughts can help you find a more positive outlook about yourself. This isn't a cure, but a step in the right direction. Our world is hard enough, and we shouldn't make it any harder on ourselves by tearing ourselves every chance we can.

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