Radical Self-Care

So Valentine’s Day is officially over, which means we will probably see a large decrease in talk about love soon. Boxes of chocolate will go on sale, and things will go back to the way they were before this holiday, right?

Wrong! While the spirit of love still lingers in the air, let’s talk about love for just a little while longer. If you read my weekly #WhitsWisdomWednesday newsletter yesterday, you would know that for me, this Valentine’s Day was all about dwelling in a space of self-love. I have had such a beautiful week so far, and here is why: I was in such a deep space of self-love that I intentionally made self-care a priority. 

To me, self-care means any action or strategy that is demonstrating a love for yourself while helping you do better and free yourself in mind, body, & spirit (& even finances). It means you don’t just care for your body, but then neglect your mental health. Or nourish your mind and neglect your spirit. To me, genuine self-care encompasses all 3, daily.

This may seem obvious to some, but foreign or even radical to many others, because I think most of us were not raised to make self-care in mind, body and spirit a priority. A lot of us were made to believe that physical health was more important than spiritual health, or even that spiritual health was more important than mental health. However, the older I get, the more I come to realize that tending to all 3 is what leads to living a more free and abundant life.

So this week, I did many things to intentionally engage in radical self-care. Can you figure out which category each action tends to? Here are just a few:

1. I brought home white roses

You ever just laugh at how God even answers the smallest of prayers? I had originally planned on buying myself some roses for VDay, but I lowkey didn’t want to pay for them. I knew I wanted to receive roses (white or pink to be more specific) by I surely didn’t expect or plan on waiting for someone to give them to me. Surprisingly enough, on Saturday, I attended a Self Love Workshop, put together by Nikkie Price. Her workshop was beautiful and funny enough, she left us all with a couple of white roses. Since there were so many extras, I ended up leaving  the event with a full bouquet of roses!

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2. I took my first heels class

I have been wanting to take a heels class for so long now, but always found an excuse to chicken out. Whether it was money or not having comfortable shoes, I kept telling myself I wasn’t able to attend yet, when the truth is I wasn’t’ fearless enough to attend yet. However, this week I was determined to fight that fear and attend Shirlene Quigley’s Street Stilettos class at Alvin Ailey (for basic beginners) and I am so glad that I did! Although I am aware that I am not a beginner when it comes to dance, I am definitely a beginner when it comes to dancing in heels. Going to class with my sis Catherine showed me that not only could I dance in heels and not get hurt, but I could do it well.

3. I rented a studio and danced with my bestie

As you may have noticed, I love taking photos and dancing. That is something my sis, Catherine, and I try to do weekly or at least biweekly. This week we decided to rent a studio and record a few videos. The pictures we took were stunning and we had the best time just vibing out to the music we played. We even choreographed a short piece in heels in about 5-10 minutes! Not only did we have a great time, but it also boosted our confidence to dance in heels right before taking class.

4. I drank lots of water

Right behind Jesus, water is probably my best friend! For the past few months I have been trying to stay consistent with drinking about a gallon a day of water. At first, it felt a little like a chore to keep up with, but now it has become   a part of my daily routine. I don’t drink much juice or soda (except ginger ale sometimes) but I fell off a little and have been drinking coffee more frequently so I wanted to make sure I was still getting as much water as possible. My hair and my skin definitely thank me!

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5. I got a mani-pedi

On Tuesday evening I went to Town Nails in Scarsdale and decided to get the Green Tea Spa Treatment pedicure, and a regular manicure. Initially I wasn’t going to go to the nail salon anymore since I had broken a nail and consequently had to cut all of my nails short, but then I decided that I still needed that time to be pampered. I am so glad I did! The Green Tea treatment was amazing and included a 10 min reflexology foot massage, half leg mud mask, callous treatment, oil treatment and hot stone massage. By the end, I left feeling like a whole new person!

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6. I gave myself a mini facial

This past summer, I began a new skincare routine. As a I had becoming more aware/intentional of what I put in my body, I realized it was just as important to do so with what I put on my body as well. So Monday night I decided to set aside 30 minutes to give myself a mini facial. For more details on my new skincare routine for radiant skin, be sure to stay tuned for my next blog post!

7. I went out to dinner with my mother

Spending dinner out with my mother is always refreshing. I love spending time with her outside of the house and we both love eating good food. We had such an amazing time at Yard House in Ridge Hill! I originally was hesitant to go there because I wasn’t too impressed the last time, but that was years ago, so I figured I’d give it another shot and I’m so glad that I did!

8. I read my Bible

Taking the time to read my Bible always makes my day or night better. It helps me re-center, stay aligned and get a fresh perspective on whatever I’m going through (good or bad). It also helps me prepare for teaching dance as well as prepar the weekly #WhitsWisdomWednesday newsletter. In addition, it is a great place to find inspiration and confirmation for the affirmations I like to say to myself daily.

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9. I bought a new pair of headphones

This one may sound silly but for me, music is LIFE! I was getting grouchy because my current headphones had broken in one ear and I felt like I couldn’t truly appreciate the music I had been listening to or fully zone out without distractions. So although they were just a cheap pair of pink headphones from 7-11, they helped me feel so much better and so much more like myself this week until I purchase a new, better pair.

10. I slept in

Okay so just a disclaimer: I probably have THE worst sleep schedule. I’m a creative person, and as life would have it, allllll of my creative energy decides to surface between the hours of 12am and 5am. I know, I know, I’m working on it. It is generally a struggle to wake up earlier and I have been doing much better at it. However, this Sunday I was so extremely exhausted, I decided to just sleep in and not feel bad about it. Yes, I missed out on church, but it felt good to listen to my body. In addition, it served as a great incentive to really work to improve my sleep schedule so I won’t have to miss out again.

I hope this list encourages you to engage in more radical self-care this weekend! If you’re not even sure where to begin, consider going through this Self-Care Check-in to see what you are in need of right now in mind, body and spirit.

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