Saturday, July 28, 2012

The Five Minute Daily Self-Care Scan

This week's theme in the July Self-Care Retreat is Inward Reflection, and as such, I'm going to direct you away from me, away from this blog and the internet, and towards yourself. 

Today I'm going to teach you my Five Minute Daily Self-Care Scan.

It starts by doing something for me right now. I want you to step away from the glare of your computer and find a comfortable spot to sit for five minutes. You can set your timer if you need to.

I want you to take five minutes. That's it. Five minutes to do absolutely nothing except take care of yourself.

But rather than spending that five minutes focusing on your breath as you might in meditation, I'd like you to sit with the question, What am I feeling right now?

Answer that question in as much detail as you can. Think about the emotions you're feeling, the physical sensations you're feeling, breathe into the complexity of who you are and all the myriad emotions and feelings that come with being a human being. Feeling anger? Where is that anger lodged in your body? Feeling sad? Can you pinpoint where your body feels that sadness? Happiness? Where is that felt? Really explore what's going on in your body and your mind right now.

Then ask yourself another question. What do I need to do to take care of myself right now? Take a deep breath in as you ask yourself this, and as you exhale, give yourself permission to answer honestly. Come up with as many answers as you can think of, normal answers, silly answers, impossible answers. Think like a child with no boundaries. Make yourself laugh.

Out of all your answers, choose one thing that you can do right now to take care of yourself. It can be as simple as giving yourself thirty more seconds to breathe before going back to whatever you were doing. It can mean picking a mantra to carry you throughout your day. It can mean standing up and stretching, putting on a song and dancing, giving yourself permission to cry, taking a walk, giving a loved one a hug, calling someone, making yourself something good to eat... It can mean doing a cartwheel. It's whatever you need right now to take care of yourself. That's all.

Make this a daily practice. The Five Minute Daily Self-Care Scan. Give yourself permission EVERY SINGLE DAY to take care of yourself in whatever way you need to. I know you won't always have an hour to do yoga or the extra money to get a massage, but you can always give yourself five free minutes a day.

Tomorrow, I'll be sharing with you a meditation that I've been promising for a while. A few weeks back, I asked you to leave a comment letting me know what gets in the way of your self-care. What I heard was that time is your biggest obstacle. And so instead of posting one of my longer meditations, I decided post a shorter one for all of us with inflammatory problems (and really, this is everyone because we all experience inflammation at different points). Tomorrow, to continue the week of self-care through inward reflection, I'll be posting my Healing Meditation for Inflammation, a 15 minute meditation that you can do daily.

To learn more about The 2nd Annual July Self-Care Retreat, read my post here. And check out more posts from our other hosts:



Cheryl Harris said...

Love it, Iris. Even 5 minutes can be a powerful break in the day.

gfe--gluten free easily said...

So simple and such a common sense concept, but no doubt life changing. Thanks so much for sharing it with us, Iris!


Anonymous said...

I start my day off by doing two rosaries while drinking my coffee. It gives me a sense of peace.

Farty Girl said...



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