Blog, Health & Wellbeing

100 Ways To Practice Self-Care.

We are busy people living in a busy world.

We often spend our days abiding by a schedule, ticking off metaphorical and physical to-do lists, splitting our day into sections of what needs to be done and what we need to do for our family, friends, partners and children. What we don’t allow time for is time for ourselves, a small part of each day to focus on our physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.

Self-care is not selfish, it is necessary. We need to allow ourselves some time to unwind, relax, be creative, be expressive, or sometimes.. simply… just be.

Here are 100 ways you can start practising self-care and make it a top priority in your daily life.

  1. Go for a walk and get some fresh air.
  2. Treat yourself to a box of chocolates.
  3. Write in a journal.
  4. Have a relaxing bubble bath.
  5. Cuddle your pets.
  6. Take a yoga class.
  7. Meditate.
  8. Pamper yourself at home or book a spa day.
  9. Eat popcorn.
  10. Have a movie night.
  11. Stretch!
  12. Have a digital detox.
  13. Book a holiday.
  14. Have a good cry.
  15. Read a book.
  16. Listen to a podcast.
  17. Go dancing.
  18. Make a smoothie.
  19. Look at old photographs that make you smile.
  20. Listen to your favourite song.
  21. Bake some cookies.
  22. Declutter your house.
  23. Paint a picture.
  24. Draw.
  25. Go to the gym.
  26. Write a letter to your future self.
  27. Make a fort or den in your living room.
  28. Watch your favourite TV show or movie.
  29. Do some gardening.
  30. Go to the cinema.
  31. Write a list of goals.
  32. Drink hot chocolate.
  33. Light a candle or wax melt.
  34. Cook a new recipe.
  35. Buy yourself some flowers.
  36. Cuddle your favourite human.
  37. Buy a gift for yourself.
  38. Take a road trip.
  39. Make a cup of tea or coffee.
  40. Dance in the rain.
  41. Watch funny videos.
  42. Colour.
  43. Cross stitch/sew/crochet.
  44. Build something.
  45. Have a nap.
  46. Have a board games night.
  47. Read a magazine.
  48. Wear your favourite PJ’s.
  49. Learn a new language.
  50. Go to a museum.
  51. Look in the mirror and compliment yourself.
  52. Go to the beach.
  53. Play a sport.
  54. Create a scrapbook.
  55. Sing.
  56. Go shopping.
  57. Go to the theatre.
  58. Play on the Playstation/X-Box.
  59. Get a massage.
  60. Go to the hairdressers and have your hair done.
  61. Write your worries on a piece of paper, then rip them and throw them away.
  62. Get rid of a material possession that doesn’t bring you joy.
  63. Drink a glass of water.
  64. Get a manicure or pedicure.
  65. Laugh.
  66. Do a puzzle.
  67. Make a new cocktail.
  68. Write a poem.
  69. Watch the clouds go by.
  70. Have some CBD oil.
  71. Ride your bike, skateboard, or roller-blade.
  72. Go for a picnic.
  73. Have a glass of wine.
  74. Acupuncture.
  75. Meal prep for the week.
  76. Have a lie-in.
  77. Read the newspaper.
  78. Go stargazing.
  79. Call in sick and have a day off work.
  80. Smile.
  81. Create a musical playlist of feel-good songs.
  82. Learn how to play a musical instrument.
  83. Have a long, hot shower.
  84. Pick flowers.
  85. Stay on the couch ALL day.
  86. Plan your future.
  87. Buy a plant.
  88. People watch.
  89. Go to your favourite cafe and order a slice of cake.
  90. Order your favourite takeaway.
  91. Reread your favourite book.
  92. Declutter your social media.
  93. Unsubscribe to spam emails.
  94. Start a DIY project.
  95. Rearrange the furniture.
  96. Go to a fancy hotel.
  97. Do something adventurous eg: skydiving, rock climbing.
  98. Practice deep breathing techniques.
  99. List everything you like about yourself.
  100. Spend a morning or afternoon doing NOTHING.

Blog, Yoga

50 Reasons Why You Should Do Yoga

Yoga is a spiritual and physical practice. It’s a combination of breathing techniques, stretching exercises and meditation. Yoga has various benefits, all of which help to improve health and wellbeing. In the ancient Indian text The Bhagavad Gita, yoga is explained simply as “Yoga is the journey of the self, through the self, to the self.”

I believe that yoga is not just stretching. Yoga isn’t a competition to see who can bend the furthest. Yoga is a form of self-expression, an escape from the daily struggles and stresses of modern life. Being on the mat is about the journey, not the destination. It isn’t about trying to touch your toes, it’s what you learn on the way down. There are a lot of preconceptions about yoga and some believe that is not for them. But believe me when I say that yoga is for everyone. If you are young, old, flexible or inflexible, disabled or have special needs, there is a form of yoga for you. I think yoga is incredible. There are as many as 50 reasons why I believe you should start yoga today.

  1. Yoga improves flexibility
  2. Yoga helps to build muscle
  3. Yoga can correct your posture
  4. It’s good for your joints
  5. Keeps your bones strong
  6. Yoga can reduce blood pressure and your heart rate
  7. Yoga can improve glucose tolerance and can help manage diabetes
  8. Practising yoga helps to maintain your immune system
  9. A single yoga session can lower your levels of the stress hormone cortisol
  10. Yoga helps to lower your blood sugar levels
  11. Yoga releases muscle tension
  12. Practising yoga can improve overall lung function
  13. Certain yoga poses can clear your sinuses
  14. Yoga can improve your digestion
  15. Yoga is effective in managing chronic pain and can help those who suffer with lower back pain and arthritis.
  16. Yoga is particularly good for pregnant mothers and can reduce the length of labour
  17. Yoga can reduce inflammation and can help migrate the effects of seasonal allergies
  18. Practising yoga can regulate metabolism
  19. Yoga can lower your risk of injury by ensuring your muscles are flexible and your joints are well supported
  20. Regular yoga sessions can ease migraines and reduce frequency and intensity of headaches
  21. Yoga can balance hormones and increase chances of fertility
  22. Yoga can lower the risk of heart disease
  23. Certain yoga postures and breathing techniques can ease the symptoms of asthma
  24. Yoga corrects the under activity of the parasympathetic nervous system through stimulation of the vagus nerve. The parasympathetic nervous system relaxes the body and is known as the ‘rest and digest’ nervous system.
  25. Yoga can reduce menopausal symptoms
  26. Yoga can improve your balance
  27. Regular yoga practice can significantly improve core strength and stability
  28. Yoga trains the brain to focus, which enables you to learn new skills
  29. Regular yoga and improve your sleep
  30. Yoga is an effective tool in treating anxiety
  31. Practising yoga can boost your self-esteem
  32. Regular yoga practice can increase your levels of body satisfaction
  33. Yoga can help to relieve depression
  34. Yoga encourages you to cultivate a deeper self-awareness
  35. Yoga can improve relationships
  36. Yoga can make you more compassionate
  37. Practising yoga can increase your tolerance to stress
  38. A regular yoga practice helps you to adopt healthy eating habits
  39. ​​​Yoga can boost your sexual performance
  40. Daily yoga sessions can improve your memory
  41. ​Yoga promotes feelings of vitality and vigour. Relieving stress and symptoms of depression and reducing the severity of fatigue
  42. ​Yoga nourishes the soul
  43. Yoga tones the skin and can reduce cellulite
  44. Yoga expands your consciousness
  45. Yoga protects your spine
  46. Some studies have shown that regular yoga practice can delay the process of ageing
  47. Practising yoga encourages you to be more mindful in your daily life
  48. Yoga can increase your energy levels
  49. Yoga can lower your cholesterol
  50. Yoga improves the quality of your life
Blog, Yoga

Dear Yoga

A letter to yoga in honour of International Yoga Day 2019

Dear Yoga,

You have changed my life.

You’re a daily gift, a wonderful blessing and a beautiful reminder that love and light exists within me. Thank you for waiting patiently as I jumped on and off the mat with hesitation for all of those years. I am here now and I fully appreciate and believe in the power of being on the mat. I am listening to what you have to say and I just wanted to say thank you for always being there, for being my safety net, for catching me when I fall and giving me a mountain to climb.

When you came into my world, you changed it. Yoga, you give me strength, you give me hope, you bring me joy and you are always there when I need you. Thank you for giving me the chance to find unity between my body and mind. Thank you for helping me find the power in my breath and love in my heart. Thank you for giving me a new passion and career path to follow. I want to thank you for teaching me that I am enough and I can do anything. You push me beyond my limits and show me that with time, discipline and patience, my body and mind are capable of amazing things.

I want to also thank you for teaching me the most important lesson of all – to let go. You give me the time and space to be present and to appreciate the moment for what it is, not what I want it to be. You give me the gift of silence, the chance to slow down, to exist only between my next movement and my next breath. You are my sanctuary, my safe space, the place where my happiness lives.

Yoga, you continue to teach me, challenge me and change me. I am ready to explore, learn and embrace any further lessons you wish to teach me. I hope to encourage those around me to feel the same way as I do about you, yoga. I will continue to spread the message about how you change lives and I won’t stop until everyone experiences the same joy you have given me. You have truly transformed my life in the best way imaginable.

Thank you.

Your yoga-obsessed friend, Emma-Jane

Blog, Yoga

Om Yoga Show Manchester Review

This year was my first time at the Om Yoga Show. After rekindling my love for yoga after leaving my job, I found myself on the mat every day, pushing myself to be better. I was scrolling through instagram when I saw the advertisement for the Om Yoga Show.

I persuaded my best friend to come with me and we bought tickets. General admission tickets were only £7.50, which I thought was great value for money.

When we got to the OM Yoga Show, we spent some time looking around the different stalls, watching the open classes that were happening and soaked up the atmosphere. There was lots to see and do. I understand why some people experience it over two days.

I absolutely loved the OM Yoga Show event! Every stall holder I spoke with was helpful and friendly. I learned about different styles of yoga that I knew nothing about before the event. I picked up some different leaflets for future yoga courses and retreats I would like to do. There were many stalls selling yoga pants and clothes, yoga mats and equipment and logo t-shirts. But there was also lots of niché stalls that were selling health and beauty products.

After viweing the stalls, we sat down to eat. There were a few options for dining at the OM Yoga Show this year. All of them were selling vegan and vegetarian food. Some were selling noodles, others sweet potato fries and wraps and there was even a stall selling smoothies and fruit juices.

We both got some food and made friends with two other yogis at our table. After lunch, we decided to stop by one of the yoga talks. Find Inner Happiness with Mukesh Pancholi. He we was speaking about happiness and how achieving it comes from within, not from external sources. It was an inspiring speech and we enjoyed it.

We looked around more stalls and bought a few items. I bought some yoga pants, a yoga block, a namaste t-shirt, a metal water bottle and some organic chocolate. My best friend bought some yoga pants.

In the afternoon, we did one of the many free open yoga classes. The session we took part in was Traditional Hatha Yoga with Emily Weathers. It was a relaxing session and we both found it was the right level for us. Next year, I think I will attend more open sessions throughout the day, or maybe even get a ticket for Saturday and Sunday.

Overall, my first OM Yoga Show definitely didn’t disappoint. It was a fantastic day that sparked even more joy that I already had for yoga. I will definitely be going again next year!