We all face hard situations at some point in our lives. Some of us face those difficulties with friends or family by our side. Others of us do not have a community of loved ones to support us through those challenges. If you have experienced either of these realities, then you know the importance of connection. This week’s self-care opportunities are intended to help cultivate connections in your life—both with yourself and others.
Burn the Candles
If you are like me, then at least once a year someone gives you a candle as a present for your birthday or Christmas. I love a good candle because it calms me down and just the right smell can take me back to good memories. My favorite candle growing up was Dream by Gap. I loved it so much that I never burnt it because I did not want to waste it. So I would look at it, smell it, return it to the shelf, but I never touched it with a flame. Until one day, I decided to light it. Shauna Niequist’s blog entry “Burn the Candle” triggered this memory. In her blog, she encourages her readers to burn their candles, wear the expensive perfume that is still in the box, and wear the sparkly earrings. “Because it’s not about candles or coffee. It’s about believing that you’re worth the good stuff, that someone wanted you to feel loved and seen and known.” She is right. You are worth the good stuff. Spend time this week remembering that you are worth the good stuff while that delicious candle burns. Hopefully, it will calm you down, take you back to good memories, and help you connect with yourself again.
Practicing Breath Prayer
There are seasons in life when hurting people surround us. Your friend’s parent has cancer. Your sister lost her job. Your grandmother is not doing as well as she was last month. Your best friend shares heartbreaking news of another miscarriage. No one is immune to these tragedies and often you become like a sponge only soaking up heartache. You may say a prayer for your friends before bed, but as the list of petitions grows longer sometimes you feel like you cannot absorb any more. One way to help release this overwhelmed feeling is through Breath Prayer. This kind of prayer helps create awareness and connection with those who are hurting. Throughout your day, or even while you are with others, you can begin to pay attention to your breathing by taking deep, slow breaths. As you breathe in pray for healing. As you breathe out pray for peace. This practice is one that is helpful in the midst of a busy day or during a season of life when you find yourself surrounded by many in need of healing or peace. By regularly carrying out this practice you will find yourself connecting to others in a whole new way.
If you are still feeling stuck connecting with yourself or others, then feel free to call me at (615) 979-4167 for a free 15-minute phone consultation. I’m happy to hear about what is happening and help direct you to a person right for you. If you are looking for more self-care ideas, then be sure to check out previous recommendations or check back next week for other ways to invest in a better you.