With its dark nights and falling temperatures, winter can be said to bring a certain serenity and peace to the close of the day – the value of which should not be underestimated. A key part of self-care is self-reflection, and winter can be the perfect time to take stock, work out what’s important to you as you get ready to embrace a new year.
Mirror mirror on the wall, self-reflection and why it’s important
Self-reflection is defined as a mental process you can use to establish what your values are, and why you think, feel, and act the way you do . Once you have this insight, it becomes easier to identify personal stress triggers and once you’ve identified them, work around them or avoid them altogether. Yoga and controlled breathing are great for bringing mental quiet and stillness. Still having trouble stilling your mind? Try diluting 5 drops of Jan de Vries Relaxing Essence in a little water three times daily.
Tune into your inner rhythm
We all have our own internal body clocks or circadian rhythm, and sometimes it can need a little reprogramming, especially if we’ve been pushing ourselves too hard.
Establishing a routine that gently winds down the mind as well as the body will help you get a better night’s sleep, making you feel more refreshed in the morning. Remember, it’s not just about how long you sleep for but also the quality of the sleep you do get. If you can make it into REM sleep, you’ve bagged yourself some reparative sleep.
Herbal teas can be a perfect place to start when it comes to winding down after a busy day. Pukka Peace Tea for example is naturally caffeine-free and provides a calming blend of organic chamomile flowers, hemp and ashwagandha.
Soak away the stress
What better way to unwind than to soak in a warm, relaxing bath? Heat and warm water are naturally soothing, but bath flakes and salts can bring their own benefits. Epsom Salts naturally occur in English springs and have done so for hundreds of years. When added to water they break down into magnesium and sulfate, which are absorbed through the skin. Magnesium has a massive impact on the body. It is needed for over 300 biochemical reactions in the body, including nerve and muscle function , energy production and sleep. Use your time in the tub to reflect on the day, before wiping the slate clean as your body continues to prepare to close it out.
Once you’ve finished in the bath treat yourself to BetterYou’s Magnesium Lotion , a nourishing blend of magnesium and shea butter formulated to improve skin elasticity, soften skin and relax muscles. Even the motion of gently massaging the lotion into your skin will help to calm you.
Make over your sleeping environment
Disconnect from the outside world at least one hour before bedtime and keep all electronic devices, including mobile phones, out of your bedroom. The blue light that phones and tablets emit inhibit melatonin, and this can cause insomnia.
Get into your PJs and treat yourself to an SOS Soothing Night Face Mask from Natura Siberica. With Rhodiola rosea, organic Siberian Pine oil, Hyaluronic Acid and vitamin E, this nourishing masks intensively moisturises and soothes tired skin, alleviating the feeling of tightness. Apply to clean, dry skin and leave overnight.
Finally, spray your room with sleep-supportive lavender. Absolute Aromas do a wonderful Lavender Room Spray , which works just as well sprayed onto your pillow, or try dabbing a little lavender on your wrists, temples or neck. We love Absolute Aromas’ Goodnight Roll On . It combines relaxing lavender, vetiver, chamomile, ylang ylang and bergamot to help soothe the senses.