This is the second in a series of 5 self-care rituals to help you BE IN BALANCE. The rituals will come out on #selfcaresunday.
As a mother, “Maintaining the basic day-to-day with NO extraordinary circumstances, keeping all those balls in the air, is a really demanding endeavor, and it leaves very little time for moms to be able to have fun, relax, rest and have downtime,” says Aimee Danielson, director of the Women’s Mental Health Program at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital in the District.
Life has become so busy and we are pretty good at keeping up but some days we need to “power down to power up” or we run the risk of burnout. Taking some downtime for self-care can leave you feeling:
1 less resentful toward others who demand your energy and time.
2 validated about your own worth, which builds your self-esteem.
3 replenished so you are able to function at your best.
4 more present and compassionate to yourself and thus others
This self care ritual is about finding some time for you. We all talk about changing our habits but that is hard because habits mostly are extrinsically motivated and subject to change. When we make self-care a ritual then it is easier to keep going because rituals are habits with meaning and connect us to our inner truth and the now.
Do something (anything can be a ritual) to fill you up as a person. (this is not the time to catch up on laundry). 5 minutes is all you need to start.
My self-care ritual is that I do “tea time”.
I like to use tea for rituals because it is difficult to prepare in a rush and gulp. It forces you to slow down.
The Japanese are known for their tea ritual so I thought I would share that with you and how to make it your own.
Japanese tea rituals (known as “sado”) use matcha tea but use your favourite as it is the ritual that is important.
Preparation - Set a specific time and place for your tea time. Make it meaningful to you.
On the day/at the time - Traditionally, guests would enter through a small door that forced them to bow to show respect. Wash your hands to represent a symbolic cleansing of the outside world.
Cleaning the tool - Take out your tea pot and tea cup that you reserve just for this ritual. Appreciate the form and be mindful with all 5 senses.
Mind your words - Keep it quiet. Unnecessary words and movements are considered contrary to the harmonious aim of the event. Time to slow down.
Making the tea - As the water flows, a little water at a time, over the tea, be mindful of how it changes colour and the smells that rise up.
Serving the tea - Sit in your special spot with your tea and take a sip. Appreciate the warmth and the flavour as it travels down your throat. Let your mind be still. The traditional pairing of matcha with Japanese sweets ask you to consider the full spectrum of the universe via your tastebuds. It is all about balance.
Closing the tea ceremony- Take deep breath of contentment and a moment to bow your head slightly to show your respect and gratitude to yourself for this time.
Leave the tea ceremony - Set an intention for how you will enter back into your daily activity.