The Witch's Book of Self-Care: Magical Ways to Pamper, Soothe, and Care for Your Body and Spirit - Arin Murphy-Hiscock 2018
Starting Your Day with Self-Care
Mental and Emotional Self-Care
Carving out a quiet space for yourself before your day begins in earnest is a valuable practice that helps you slip into a grounded headspace from which to approach your routine. If this routine doesn’t work for you, tweak it until it addresses your needs.
Daily 5-Minute Self-Care Routine to Start the Day
This is a regular self-care version of this routine. For a specific spiritual version, see the Daily Kickoff Ritual in Chapter 4. You could also pair the two for the best possible way to start your day.
What to Do:
1. Wake up. Stretch. Suggested yoga poses you can do without leaving your bed: Child, Cobra, Cat/Cow, Pigeon.
2. Sit cross-legged and close your eyes. Breathe deeply and run your awareness over your body. Is there anywhere that hurts, that feels off, that might need extra attention today?
3. Get up. Drink a glass of water with awareness. Notice the sensation of the liquid in your mouth, the muscles moving as you swallow.
4. Mentally review your schedule for the day, perhaps while you have your first cup of tea or coffee. Take a moment to open your mind and accept your upcoming tasks. Don’t go into detail about how you’ll execute them; just accept that they’re on the list of things to do.
5. Choose an affirmation for your day based on your physical body scan, your upcoming schedule for the day, and your general mood. Affirmations like “I am enough,” “I meet challenges with grace,” and “I am calm and capable” are good all-purpose statements, but it’s preferable to tailor your affirmation to your needs.
♦ An additional 5 minutes to work with your self-care journal can be a beneficial complement to this basic morning self-care list. (You could write out your chosen daily affirmation a few times to help it sink in!) See the Daily Kickoff Ritual in Chapter 4 for more ideas.
Self-care can be tough. You need to see who you truly are in order to take care of yourself properly. Defining the different parts of yourself is a great exercise in self-acceptance. The following spell will help you discover and acknowledge all the different parts of who you are, and the affirmations that follow will help you keep in mind how great that person is.
Authenticity: A Spell to Help Recognize the Real You
Here’s a spell to help with insight into who you are, so that you can more easily embrace yourself.
What You Need:
♦ Pencil or pen (or colored pencils/markers; see instructions)
What to Do:
1. Center and ground. Take a few deep, slow breaths.
2. Write your name in the center of the paper.
3. Start writing words around your name that reflect who you are—not who you wish you were; who you truly are on the inside. Shy? Scared? Melancholy? Geek? Scared of rejection? Feel left behind by friends you knew in college? Worried your supervisor doesn’t understand your approach? Enthusiastic fan of various film franchises? Write it down. No one is going to see this but you. Be precise. Don’t judge. Don’t make excuses. But don’t leave out the good stuff. Do you make a terrific cheesecake? Are you a sympathetic listener? Do you have an excellent sense of humor? Are you a runner, a knitter, a gamer?
4. Hold the paper and say:
Past the outside,
No more hiding.
I am myself,
I am enough,
I am worth love.
5. Fold up the paper and slip it into your self-care journal. Review it every once in a while when you feel like you’re losing the sense of yourself.
♦ Write a new authenticity spell a few times a year, if you feel the desire to. Make sure to date each one so you can properly trace the evolution when you review them. You should see core concepts pop up again and again. Those describe you at your center.
Staying authentic to who you are at heart and in your spirit will be an ongoing challenge. When you feel like you’re slipping into pretending to be someone else, or when you’re making choices because they seem easy instead of right (we all do it sometimes, but when it becomes habit because it’s simpler than the alternative, that’s when it’s time to revisit the previous Authenticity spell), working with authenticity-themed affirmations can help you remember to stay on track.
Perhaps you’re nervous about making the changes that family, friends, or colleagues may question or challenge. Reinforce your commitment to being authentic by using these affirmations to remind yourself that you have the right to be who your spirit tells you to be.
What to Do:
These single-sentence affirmations can be written down, spoken aloud as part of meditation, repeated in your heart or aloud while looking yourself in the eye in the mirror, written on sticky notes and posted around your cubicle, typed out in a beautiful font and used as the lock screen on your phone, and more. The possibilities are limitless.
♦ I am valid.
♦ I am the person I wish to be.
♦ I am the best version of myself that I can be.
♦ I release all false projections of myself and embrace my true spirit.
♦ I am vibrant and creative.
♦ My actions and choices reflect my values.
♦ I am at home in my heart and spirit.
♦ I honor who I am.
♦ Want to use all these statements as part of a litany? Go for it!
♦ As always, tweak these affirmations if you feel the desire to, and write your own to tailor them exactly to your needs.