Taking a few minutes a day to reflect on yourself can be incredibly beneficial to your physical, emotional, spiritual and mental wellbeing.
Taking this time for yourself can assist to release tension and help with relaxation, improve sleep and increase happiness. Like with all change, take small steps and be consistent. Give yourself 3-6 weeks to create new, improved habits. Use this time to discover new things you enjoy doing alone. Most of all, have fun! Here are a few tips to help your self-reflection each day.
Learn to slow your breathing. This is a simple breathing exercise to slow the breathe and help your re-focus when you are stressed or at any time you wish to relax. Close your eyes and breathe normally. Now imagine a clock. Start at the 12 position and count to 3 as you breathe in, then hold your breath for 3 counts as , now breathe out for 3 counts, now hold your breath for 3 counts. Now repeat the cycle of breathing as many times as you need. Each clock rotation is a full breath so that a full breathing cycle takes 12 seconds. Breathe in, hold, breathe out, hold. I suggest 10 full breaths if you are stressed for example before a meeting or interview. If you are can't sleep or your mind is racing, keep breathing until you fall asleep or until you feel relaxed.
Meditation is easy, it just requires a little practice. Start with the breathing exercise above each day or search for a guided meditation. Start with a 5 minute meditation. There are many free meditations online for relaxation, to help focus, for healing, pain management, visualisation...You name it and there's a meditation for it. Visualisation is almost the same as most meditations will ask you to visualise something. Some meditations will focus on breath awareness, body or mind awareness rather than visualisation. Find the one that suits you and change it when you want.
Start a gratitude journal. Any small notebook is good or buy one and a pen that you love. Each night before sleeping and before doing your breathing before bed, write down 5 things you are grateful for each day. It may be as simple as: Thanks for the clean air that I breathe, the clean water that I drink, the food that I ate, the bed that I sleep in, the shelter that I have, my health, my family, our happiness. Listing the things you are grateful for helps you focus on the many things are are going right in your life and help foster a positive attitude to your life.
Nature has a way of healing. Spending just 5 minutes outside in a natural environment, even on a lawn or near a tree, will help relax you. Get some fresh air and some sunshine or some rain on your skin. Walk on the grass or the sand barefoot. Place your palms on a tree trunk and breathe, it will help to ground you to feel calmer and more centred. Holding a small stone can also help to ground and calm you. If you are lucky enough to be by a beach, walk barefoot on the sand and wet your toes in the water. Go for a swim or wade in the water. Water refreshes and cleanses the skin and the energy field around the body.
A salt water bath is the next best thing to a swim in the ocean and if you don't have a bath, a small scoop of kitchen salt, rubbed all over the body, when you're in the shower, is also a refreshing and inexpensive exfoliant for the skin. It's also a cleanser of the skin and the energy field of the body. After a tiring day a salt water bath or salt scrub can help to refresh and soothe the body and mind.