5 Things Women who are Happier are Doing
I grew up hearing my mom tell me that a lady’s hands, hair and feet should always look good. For all my mom’s faults, she did teach me to take care of myself and I very much value that to do this day. She was a single mom with no child support who worked 2-3 jobs at any given time, so much respect to her for still taking care of herself. I figure if she can do it, I certainly can!
As Moms, we’re too busy running after and caring about everyone else. I’m not saying it’s easy to change that bad habit, but it’s not impossible! It just requires some consistent effort. And with any change you’re initiating in your life, there will be a transition phase where you’re back and forth between old and new habit until you have completely dropped the old one and implemented the new one. It’s not a perfect, straight road so be patient with yourself.
“Beautiful girl, take care of yourself. No one else knows what your soul needs.” — AstonC
Whenever I make time to take care of the little things, it always makes me feel better about myself. You are important and the time you give to yourself is vital, it’s a necessity not a luxury. We can’t truly give our best selves to the ones we love if our cup is empty. Similar to how airplane emergency instructions advise you to put the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping others.
Try really hard to find some time in your day, week, month where you are making small choices and decisions that help you to focus on your own growth change and well-being. Some people might think a lot of items on this list are vain and I’m fine with that . I think part of this road to self-discovery, especially as a mom, is being a bit selfish and a bit vain. As women I think we should take pride in our appearance and help make ourselves feel feminine and beautiful.
Choose something that might be outside of your comfort zone. We don’t grow from doing the same old thing, we grow from challenging ourselves. So if you’re not someone who typically gets their hair done, why don’t you go do that and see how it makes you feel?
Here are my top tips to taking care of myself:
1. Get your hair done
Most women in their mid-30’s are coloring their hair. Either because you’ve always colored or darkened it or because the Grey has set in. I’ve been coloring my hair since I was like 18— no lies; guess how much that has cost me! I was a toe-head as a child but slowly lost my bright blonde so I’m on a continual 6-week cycle to reclaim the locks of my youth. Shit could be worse, I say.
Make sure that you’re pre-booking your appointments at the correct time when you know your color is due so that you don’t get unsightly regrowth or allow the little springy grey buggers to get out of control. I like to time it juuuuuust before my hair looks really crappy , so I’m balancing the line between what I’m spending and how bad I actually look if left undone.
The thing I love about getting my hair done is that it’s a real treat! Throughout my life I’ve always felt very grateful for this luxury— I love having my hair blow dried and leaving the salon feeling like a million bucks. There have been times in my life where I couldn’t afford the blow out and left with wet hair and it never felt quite the same. I also rotate having my hair cut to every third time I go, to be more frugal.
Good hair products are vital
Having a great shampoo and conditioner is so important, especially if you color your hair. I’ve also noticed that rotating my products keeps my hair feeling fresh and not dried out. Companies are innovating all the time so if you’ve had the same old products fo-evaaaaa, then try something new!
I have been a big fan of Kérastase for as long as I can remember. They’re a brand that’s synonymous with elegance and luxury products at an accesible price point. They have a new to-die-for range, called Aura Botanica . This range is free from all the chemicals you don’t want to be putting near your body and they contain Moroccan Argan Oils, which unless you’ve been living under a rock you should have heard does wonders for damaged hair (it’s naturally high in fatty acids and vitamin E!). If you can’t afford to get the whole set and you had to pick just one product, I would get the AURA BOTANICA SOIN FONDAMENTAL (Deep Conditioner).
Point is— beautiful locks really make you feel pretty and confident. Which is what we’re after….(Right?!)
2. Hands and Feet
I do feel like ideally it’s best to try get to your local nail salon every couple months at least to get a clean up. We all know how quickly our hands and feet start to look yucky, even with a fresh coat of paint. In Southern Cali you can get a very affordable basic Pedi for $25. I don’t always get a mani because with a gel polish they clean your hands up anyway so I can get out of there for under $50, which is not bad. In a perfect world you would go every 2 weeks and if your budget allows, I think that makes for a nice mommy treat. But in truth, I don’t find the time to go that often so normally end up picking my gel polish off. Everyone does it, right?
If going to a nail salon doesn’t fit into your budget, DIY nails has become super easy these days. When I was younger I used to do my own pedi’s and got really good at a doing a great French paint on my toes. It looked professional y’all (See how I sounded so American there? You forgot I have an accent, right? ).
Sally Hansen has come out with white tip pens but, in my humble opinion these don’t work as well as painting it. Here is a link to and old-school white polish kit and the ‘Sheer Rose’ color is also the nicest out the SH range.
If you want a plain color, these extremely little handy nail polish stencils will help you keep your paint lines straight for a more professional look.
I know some of my friends are not big fans of doing makeup and a lot of women feel like they don’t know how to do it properly. I feel like I used to be very good at doing makeup but as I’ve gotten older, I don’t have the patience to deal with my drooping face, lol.
I do find if I have a few minutes that watching some Youtube videos is always inspiring for some new tricks. I love Lauren Curtis, and yes I realize she is like 12, but her production is professional and she is real— blotches, pimples and all. This is a fab video because it shows you super quick, 6 min makeup, all in one drugstore brand, Rimmel. So you can pop to your local Target and pick all of these products up for super cheap.
Whenever I’m feeling really down on myself, I try to spend just a few mins doing my makeup in the morning and I swear it makes me feel better through the day. Even if all I’m doing is dropping the kids off at school and working from home.
“Love is the great miracle cure. Loving ourselves works miracles in our lives.” — Louise Hay
4. Burn Aromatherapy Oils
I suspect many a guest that’s been entertained in our home, might have felt they’d been transported to an Indian Ashram or Thai Spa . We like to burn incense and oils in the house and we started doing it long before aromatherapy oils became cool
My love for oils started on my first trip to Thailand when I was 21. Oh-em-gee, don’t get me started on Thailand… my absolutely favorite place in the world. It’s one of those once in a lifetime places that transforms the way you see the world.
Aaaanyhoo, I digress… back to oils. Whenever we have guests round I like to light a burner in the guest toilet and in the main living area. I always used to do my own oil mixes before ready-to-buy Blends made it easy. I am a bit of a ‘bargain betty’ and generally like to find the place I can spend the least while not sacrificing on quality.
I searched high and wide and found the perfect solution— Spark Naturals! The reason I love Spark Naturals is because their oils are pure and expertly sourced from appropriate locations, ie: their lavender oils are sourced in France and Lemon from Italy— I kid you not! Also, their price point is around 40% cheaper than another popular brand making its rounds on the mommy marketing circuit. I don’t see a reason to spend more than you have to to get a great product.
Here are my top 4 blend recommendations:
- My own personal favorite DIY blend: Rose and Geranium. If you want your home to smell like a Spa, you have to try this blend. It is sheer bliss! (Also try Geranium with Lemon and Bergamot.) Note: You don’t need a pure rose oil for this to work in a Diffuser blend, so I’ve linked to Amazon where you’ll find a great alternative at a more affordable price.
- My second personal favorite blend is: Lemongrass and Lavender – this very up-lifting. A great one for summer entertaining. I find this one transports me to faraway places!
- Harmony Blend by Spark Naturals: This blend was expertly designed to balance hormones and manage symptoms of PMS. Need I say more? I’ll take whatever help I can in that area, thank you!
- Zen Grounding Blend by Spark Naturals: Designed to promote clarity, calmness and an overall feeling of good and peace. A winner in my book!
5. Meditate/Sit quietly
Ok so realistically, as moms, this opportunity ‘aint easy! If you have very young kids, you do have opportunities when they are napping. I know, I know, this is the time you clean the kitchen and do the laundry. But try to carve out some time, even if it’s just 10-20 mins a couple times a week. For moms with older kids, give them their ipad or some cartoons after lunch (it won’t kill them, I promise!). For mom’s who work— take some time out of your lunch break to do this or do it when you’re home and the kids are down. There is always an opportunity, you just have to carve it out.
“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” Dr. Wayne Dyer
Some people find meditating difficult— I have found this more so since having kids, I just can’t get to that calm place and my mind is racing from thinking of things I have to do. If that’s the case, you can still benefit from this by listening to some healing audio. My favorite inspirational speaker of all time is Dr. Wayne Dyer . My favorite Wayne Dyer audio recording of all time is: The Secrets of an Inspirational (In-spirit) Life. (Ssshhhh, don’t say I said but….buying direct from Hayhouse, especially on audio tracks is cheaper than buying off Amazon!)
I used to listen to this on my iPod (remember those?! lol) riding the train into London. Over and over again. Each time I would gain a new nugget of wisdom. And I loved that it’s a live recording because you get a real sense of his personality as he speaks to the people watching him. Do yourself a favor and download that audio. I guarantee you, if you’re feeling stressed, or anxious, or lonely and you put that on. Just the cantor of his voice will make you feel better within minutes.
Each tip I’ve given you is something pampering that you can do for yourself to bring a little inner peace and happiness to your life. Something just for you. There are things you can do daily, weekly and bi-monthly. I have a host more ideas coming your way so keep an eye on your inbox for some more tips and fab recommendations.