I’m one of those people who can read about self love, make notes about self love, hell even podcast about self love. But I struggle to actually DO it. Understanding the principles is basic. We can all read an article on things ‘to do’ but how do we actually go about putting it into practice? We’re all time poor, all busy and each of us barely has time to grab lunch away from our desks let alone go and mediate for 2 hours.
It got me thinking. Am I practicing what I preach? Well not really. It’s only since the dawn of this new year that I’ve really ramped it up and started spending more time with myself. And boy has it been worth it! I’m enjoying myself. The truth is, finding the time for self love is not easy. It’s taken me lots of trial and error, different strategies and a host of effort to get it right. So much so that I want to share it with you. Here’s how I’ve followed through with my self love promises and easy ways that you can too. Taking in just a few will make you feel amazing!
For me there was something so overwhelming about trying to get a structure into my working week alongside my baby. I’d nearly always lose track of time and would be so hard on myself for not using the 3pm slot for myself. I’d be wearing myself out with house chores. So I began a deal with my husband. Every Saturday morning he wakes with Mia and takes her to his parents so she can see her Aunty Lucy and cousins (and Dan gets to spend a couple of hours quality time with the family). Meanwhile I get to have a lie in. I so look forward to a Saturday morning rest and whenever I feel worn out or defeated, I always think “ah well I can get a lie in on Saturday’. Now I know those who don’t have kids probably do this without thinking but for those who do have babbas, you’ll get me!
Self love often requires a little help from others. If like me you’re solely responsible for chores, childcare, cooking – and on top of that you’re running businesses and don’t have parents nearby, delegating tasks on your to do list is a must. We’re only human and you need some time for you. When I remember how important self love is I feel less guilty when asking for support. Sometimes you may not have someone close to help out. So if it means using robots like Alexa and Google Home or online supermarkets that deliver to your door, remember that these things are designed to make our lives easier. I call out my shopping list to Alexa as and when I think of things and use Amazon Prime Now to deliver it. It saves me time and effort schlepping to the shop.
How many times have you gone out and had a really disappointing night – even though you didn’t want to go in the first place? This can often lead to you being super hard on yourself! So next time, just say no. “No sorry I’m going to the gym / watching Netflix / reading / getting an early night” are totally valid reasons to not go out.
According to Fortune, those aged between 18 and 34 are online around 6 hours per week. People over 50 spend about 4 hours a week on social media. Millennials however are spending about 27 hours on social media! That’s not even including how long we spend watching the TV or chatting on the phone. Imagine what you could do on a digital detox. You can see how I got on doing mine in this post.
be a toddler.
Ok I don’t mean throw a tantrum. Mia is in a strict routine of sleep, bath time and meal time. In around that she has her exercise, her play dates and her reading time. If she doesn’t have her snack like clockwork she’ll let me know about it. Funny isn’t it how we can pick up cues from toddlers but we can’t listen to our own hunger pangs, our moods and our bodies. So many times I’ve been feeding Mia or giving her her nap time but skipping everything for me. Missing meals and erratic sleep patterns are detrimental long term and leave us little time to know what’s going on in the future. Or when we get ‘self love’ time.
This was a new one I’ve recently learned. Having something to look forward to motivates you to striving a particular goal. More than likely this goal involves yourself. For me? I’m off paddle-boarding in the Summer. I want to be in shape for it and I want to be fit to make the most of it. So I know how long I have until the event happens and I know that if I start walking a bit more now or going to the gym, I’ll get there. I find things like this easier to prioritise in my busy week.
I went OTT on notebook, planner and diary purchases last year. I ended up with my CEO Life Planner and a Collins timed day per week diary. This year however, I’ve found exactly what works for me. Aspinal of London have a diary that shows you the week on two pages in vertical columns rather than horizontally. Each column is then sectioned into time slots. I have no idea why I didn’t look for this structure sooner – it’s so much clearer. Oh and they’re now reduced!
shop the post.
Dress – ASOS
Bag – See by Chloé
Boots – Kurt Geiger
Words & Styling by Lauren Silvester
Photography by Zoe Griffin