The faster our lives spin, the more we tend to fly apart. You understand the need for relaxation and self-care – but fitting dedicated time for things like yoga or meditation in our hectic day can seem impossible. Why not adopt easy practical self-care and simple methods of indulgence? Give yourself five minutes here and there to reconnect with good quality coffee, tea or chocolate. You don’t just deserve it – you need it!
Simple Indulgence: How to really fit easy practical self-care into a hectic life
There are a million blogs out there offering helpful advice to slow down, treat yourself, and get some time just for you. What they don’t seem to explain is how to fit easy practical self-care rituals into an already hectic life.
We all know that there are scientific studies saying how much we need to factor some relaxation and mindfulness into our lives to stay healthy. What we don’t always have is the time to follow through with scheduling me-time for many of these activities, although we know it would be good for us.
And somehow being unable to schedule in the yoga or formal mediation or daily exercise makes us feel even more guilty and stressed!
Easy practical self-care is so important
Especially for busy women and working mums, we know that self-care is important. But we can’t always cut parts of our life out to squeeze in a chunk of time for full self-care.
We can’t easily reduce the career demands, child-raising duties, and household tasks that make up every day. And don’t get me started about all of the extra brain-drain of holding every conceivable piece of information necessary to run your family all in your head at the same time. That itself is as draining as physical work!
The good news is that you can get your simple and easy self-care and indulgence time in, without the guilt of feeling like you should be exercising or following proper organic relaxation techniques. You take mini-breaks. And you do this through the Caffeine Trifecta of coffee, tea and chocolate!
Me-time, by its very definition, should be what YOU want and need it to be
A mind that is very busy darts here and there, and can be overwhelming. A mind so conditioned may make you less likely to experience life deeply by not being in the present moment, as it is always running ahead of yourself.
You need five minutes here and there across your day to just down your tools. Say to yourself, take five, breathe and reground. It can be nourishing and rewarding in many forms.
In this busy life, it is so important just to remind yourself to slow down – even if it is just for a moment. Take this time to reconnect with yourself and remember who you are and perhaps why you are doing all of the things that you do.
Good quality simple indulgences
Indulgences do not always need to come with a flourish. We can have small, day-to-day indulgences, by making time for ourselves with a simple, good quality coffee, tea or chocolate.
It should be good quality because you are good quality, and also because your time is so incredibly precious. When you only get five minutes here and there, you don’t want to waste it on bad coffee, or even mediocre coffee.
I don’t subscribe to instant coffee usually, it’s not quite special enough for self-care or me-time. It’s fine in a pinch or when you really need a jolt of energy to face a day. But instant coffee is for drinking on the run, not the practical indulgence moment we are talking about today.
Source better, slower coffee for a quality self-care break. Order a take-away coffee (take along your reusable coffee cup), and go somewhere different every time to sit and just observe. Or sit down for five minutes at a beloved local café if you have one within reach. But if you don’t, make sure you have some lovely proper stuff at home.
There are many ways to make good coffee at home. A stovetop moka pot works well, as does a French press. I use both at home, coupled with a milk frother.
If you have a higher budget, a coffee machine is a good way to go. It can seem like a bit of a splurge when you pay for it in one go. But think of it as an investment item, or a ‘cost-per-use’ piece. The money you will save on takeaway coffees, plus the sanity rewards points you will get back every time you take five minutes in your day for a freshly brewed cup, are totally worth it!
Tea is a particular favourite of mine because you can force yourself to slow down for a moment by using proper loose leaf tea. Select a special teapot and cup as well, and let the tea leaves steep while you inhale the relaxing aroma. Sit still, observe the leaves unfurl and hold the cup in both of your hands as you drink – no multi-tasking right now!
Tea has a unique ability to be both energising and relaxing at the same time. So, slow down and recharge your batteries. Then get up again with renewed vigour and that extra oomph you needed to go again.
I have many types of teas at home, but at the moment I am really enjoying indulging in Japanese green tea (asatsuyu specifically). This tends to be more umami in taste than the Chinese green tea that I am used to. That is the fun of tea, the tasting notes are so varied and there are always nice surprises around the corner – all just in 5 minutes!
A friend of mine once said that somehow just by having good quality tea, you feel as though you are worthy, haha. I would say that loose leaf tea just screams ‘SLOW DOWN’ to me, except tea would never scream. It just whispers it quietly in your ear until you can ignore its call no longer. All tea (loose leaf form or not) deserves to be enjoyed slowly and mindfully.
Chocolate can be a slightly more controversial practical indulgence because it does add calories to the waistline. You might find it harder to justify as healthy ‘self-care’. Surely you can’t count sitting and eating chocolate as good a definition of ‘me-time’ as meditation, exercise or yoga?
Of course, you can!
A healthy diet is all about moderation and using your calories wisely. You have a certain amount of ‘sometimes’ foods you are allowed. Why not use your ration properly? You can use it on a small quantity of exquisite quality chocolate, rather than just sneaking in a rushed, cheap and big chocolate bar from the supermarket or servo because you’ve been denying yourself for too long?
Good quality chocolate should be mindfully enjoyed. Stop what you are doing and sit down. Close your eyes and focus entirely on the sensations offered up by the chocolate. Consider the silkiness on your tongue, the richness on the back of your throat, the creaminess in your belly.
Hold it in your mouth and savour it as long as you can. You didn’t realise it, but eating with conscious awareness in this way could be as mentally beneficial as formal meditation practice. And far easier to squeeze into your day!
Just the coffee, tea or chocolate and you. No pretensions, no expectations to be or do anything, except to just be in the moment and savour the taste.
Simple indulgences – three easy practical self-care methods that can be fitted into your hectic life. You don’t even need to make excuses to give yourself this treat; it should be a prescribed necessity in your daily routine.
Wishing you a great day,
Suk-yi is a caffeine lover, blogger, entrepreneur, air quality consultant, environmentalist, world citizen, wife and mother. She explores various topics related to coffee, tea, chocolate and everything in between on her blog. Make sure to follow her on her Facebook Page, Instagram Page and Pinterest Page.