Ten Essentials For A Relaxing Self-Care Session

Ten Essentials For A Relaxing Self-Care Session

I share my weekly self-care routine, in the hopes of inspiring others to create something similar.

Life as a student or “almost-adult” can be a very tiring activity. It often feels as if responsibility outweighs relaxation and you will never have any time to yourself. I am a firm believer in self-care practices and making sure you don’t devote your entire life to working. This is why I propose to you to set aside a few hours each week to spend completely away from work and responsibilities and solely focus on your well-being. Working constantly will have negative effects on your health and it’s important to prevent that.

My personal self-care time is a Sunday evening, after my work has been completed and I have eaten dinner. This is the time that personally works for me because it gives me a fresh mind before the week ahead. I understand that everyone has different schedules and this may not work for everyone but I highly recommend it. Your self-care routine can consist of anything that would be beneficial to your mental health such as activities, food, talking to others etc. To those having trouble developing a routine that works for them, I have decided to share ten essential parts of my self care routine, because I believe that everyone could benefit from aspects of it.

1. Spa Treatment

In my opinion, one of the BEST ways to participate in self care is to give yourself the spa treatment. Run a nice warm bath with a bath bomb, bath salts, or bubbles and just allow yourself to have a nice soak. I also recommend using a face mask during this time too and maybe giving yourself a mani/pedi afterwards. (PSA: Freeman’s masks are like $5 a bottle and have multiple uses and make your skin super soft!!)

2. A Nice Beverage

Treating yourself also means treating your taste buds. I prefer to drink warm beverages like hot green tea or chamomile tea but if you are of age, a glass of red wine or champagne may be a nice addition, as long as it’s in moderation.

3. Snacks

What’s the drink without the food? What you have as your ~healing snack~ is up to you, but I usually lean towards sweeter things like chocolate or fruit. I recommend keeping these snacks on the lighter side so you do not have a stomach ache afterwards, defeating the purpose.

4. Books

There is truly nothing better than curling up with a book and having no worries. I prefer reading light-hearted fiction or “beach reads” during my self-care time. I don’t often turn to non-fiction or darker stories because I don’t want to stress myself out.

5. Comfy Clothes

Alright so after you’ve sat in the bathtub for so long you’ve started shriveling into a raisin and you’ve covered yourself in scented lotions, it’s time to change into the comfiest pajamas you own. My go-to is an old oversized t-shirt, pj pants from old navy, and fuzzy socks!

6. Talking to a friend

This is the point where I will curl up with a blanket and my phone and scroll through my social media and text a few of my friends to catch up and talk. I always like to keep in touch with those who are important to me, especially because I can be so busy throughout the week I forget to check up on them. Remember to always tell the ones you love that you love them, because you never know what could happen tomorrow.

7. Netflix

Occasionally, I will watch a few episodes of a favorite show such as Friends, How I Met Your Mother, or The Office. I like to watch things that are light-hearted and comedic because I don’t want to watch a stressful show during a time when I am trying to relax.

8. Pets

If you happen to have pets, it’s time to cuddle with them! I have two cats who I absolutely adore and they will always come and cuddle with me which makes my heart happy. If you don’t have any pets, watch some cute kitten/puppy videos on youtube and you might just cry because of the cuteness. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

9. Candles

I love to have a candle burning while I’m just chilling in my room because it adds on to the relaxation vibe I’m trying to create. You can find many lower-prices candles at Target or Bath and Body Works or you can get a wax melter and use that instead. Either way, find a scent that will make you feel at home and burn it in your bathroom or bedroom.

10. Yoga/ Meditation

As a final step before I go to sleep, I like to incorporate some simple yoga and meditation. Yoga helps stretch muscles and relax the mind and meditation can help mindfulness and regaining inner strength. After meditation I’m very drowsy so it’s usually at this point I will turn off the lights and go to sleep.

Cover Image Credit: Steemit

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.

Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

Suicidal thoughts are thought of in such black and white terms. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is there are some stuck in the gray area of those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble; and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead. You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time, until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling; whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die," or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you, you are not alone.

If you're thinking about hurting yourself please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit suicidepreventionhotline.org to live chat with someone. Help it out there and you are not alone.

Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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To The Girl Who Hasn't Yet Found Herself, Keep Looking

You will eventually find her in all the right places, I promise.


They say you are supposed to go through your awkward transition phase during middle school, but you still feel like you haven't quite figured it out. They say you are supposed to join a club in order to "find yourself", but then you end up sitting in the back watching everyone laugh and catch up. You feel out of place--like you're existing somewhere you just don't belong. Let me be the voice telling you that you are exactly where you are meant to be right now. Every decision you've ever made has led you to this place. This is, of course, much harder to grasp than to just say. Really though, you're doing just fine!

Finding out the things you don't like to do are just important as discovering your passions when it comes to finding your true self. Don't be afraid to join that club, talk to the girl next to you in class, and explore your interests. You might hate it. You might want to run away, but at least you're learning about yourself and where your comfort zone lies. Finding yourself is a life long process, so don't expect an Aha! moment where you have finally hit your destination. Think of it more as a sense of confidence of comfortability in who you are and what you stand for.

Stepping away from friends and family for some time may also lead you to who you are. Often, we grow up and mature only to have the same beliefs, morals, and political opinions as our parents. It's not our fault and we aren't childish, we just trust our parent's judgment and see their conscience as nothing but truth. Part of gaining independence is questioning your own biased beliefs and reevaluating them so they reflect your character better. Same goes with friends. Try to spend a Friday night in with yourself. See what you do. Do you watch a movie? Do you catch up on homework? Do you paint your nails? What is it that makes you feel happy when nobody else is around? By considering the answer to this question, you're one step closer to figuring this whole life thing out.

You may also want to try stepping away from your phone. Your social media (this shouldn't come as a surprise) is giving you the false idea that everyone around you knows exactly what they're doing and enjoys doing it all. Not true. So not true actually, everyone else is struggling to find out just who they are. You and your phone need some distance.

Finding yourself doesn't just happen. You need to explore the world around you and you'll eventually find out where your place is. Be patient with the process and know the right steps will surface when you're ready to take them. Be kind to yourself and have the bravery to discover the girl inside you (I hear she's really cool).

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