Revolutionizing Self Care

by Jasmine Grace

Recently I was introduced to Lori Guth Moffet who inspired me with her concept of a “Self-Care Revolution in 2012”. When I heard this it sparked something in me that I wanted to embrace for myself, my students, and all of Yoga on High. Knowing that Lori was going to be teaching the Urban Zen classes, classes, thinking about the values of Yoga on High, and our personal missions we decided to embrace this self-care revolution at the studio.
Like most things in life we should always start with ourselves before we can even hope to reach others. As a teenager I think back to how I would start my day:
Wake at dawn and go for a run. Go for a swim in the ocean and watch the sunrise over the Pacific at Kings Beach, Queensland, Australia. (This is such a meditative, contemplative, grounding and inspirational act. I know living in Ohio we don’t have the ocean but if you are ever traveling and have the chance to do this safely I highly recommend it. If you are not a morning person sunsets work well too.) Eat a healthy breakfast, shower and get ready for school. Bike or walk to school (at least a 30 minute walk).
Besides the surfers I was perhaps the youngest one awake. There were the familiar faces of all those invested in a similar morning routine. In what could have been one of the most traumatic times of my life (perhaps another story) I was grounded by the beauty of nature, the positive effects of exercise and the power of a self-care ritual. Somewhere in my twenties I lost this connection, strayed from my source, discovered different priorities, had adult responsibilities, took on too much, and forgot how to care for myself.
My personal journey of rediscovering self-care has been one that has happened over the last few years. Unfortunately (or fortunately), I became quite sick and was forced to care for myself. My hope for everyone is that we can create healthy and balanced lifestyles that help us cope in today’s high tech, overcommitted and low connection society. We are all different and so are our personal needs to maintain a healthy mind, body and spirit. It is about striking a balance that works for us, our schedule, our health, and our current resources. I recently attended the Aveda Nurtur Salon Stress Fix event as a “stress expert” sharing stress reduction techniques like breathing, yoga and basic Aurevedic principals. I giggle at this title because like most I am still learning to balance it all but a few things that I have discovered along my journey are:
1. Start the day with gratitude and a personal meditation practice.
2. Use a dry skin brush and Auryevedic body oils like sesame and coconut oil.
3. Sweat once a day – yoga, run, walk, and be fit – move!
4. Drink lots of water.
5. Eat colorful fresh fruits and vegetables.
6. Get out in nature.
I call this my sunshine recipe. In moving to Ohio after spending the majority of my life in the sunny lands of Australia and Florida I created this personal recipe of wellness. It is essentially what I need to do daily to feel good, to take care of myself.
I recently spent 6 days with Ashtangi Tim Miller during his annual trip to Yoga on High. One of the many things he said that inspired me was that doing your yoga practice is like brushing and flossing your teeth. It is part of your daily hygiene routine. Simple. The discipline is there for my yoga practice but not for my self-care strategy. As soon as I get busy and stressed the first things that goes away are the extra things I do for myself to feel good, and it is a downward spiral from there. This brings up my passion for cultivating a daily self-care ritual and how the small things we do for ourselves can make a huge difference to our quality of life. My husband Jeremy Grace is an inspiration to me in this way. He has his routine and takes care of himself and in return he seems to have plenty of energy left for work and family.

Jeremy Grace - my husband and self-care guru! Photography by me taken Whangamata, New Zealand.

It is interesting to observe what you resist and avoid in life, especially if it is something that is good for you! If you need help figuring it out I highly recommend Victoria A. Vetere. She wrote the recent blog on the benefits of restorative yoga, is a personal life coach and friend of Lori Moffat Guth.
What is your self-care ritual and how do you fit it into your day?
Classes at Yoga on High that promote self-care include our restorative, Urban Zen, and meditation classes. We have taken the self-care concept a step further to say we have a Yoga on High self-care team, although come to think of it just taking time to do any style of yoga in your day is self-care!