But First: Self-Care

8 soothing ways to wind down after a stressful day.

I had so many plans. So, so many plans for today, for this week, for this year…for my life. But it’s late, I’m out of energy, and the to-do list is still not done. I’m also emotionally and energetically exhausted from coping with not one, but two pandemics. 2020 has gone entirely pear-shaped, y’all. And your girl is tiiieddd. For now, the best thing I can do for myself is rest and recharge. Tomorrow is another day. If you’re feeling the same, or you ever have, here are eight self-care strategies to help you refill your cup at night, so that when you wake up you’re ready to slay the day.

1. Unplug.

Go screens-free. Take a break. For at least an hour – more if you can manage it – leave your phone, TV, iPad, and computer turned all the way off. Especially your phone. Rest your eyes from the blue light of the screens, and rest your spirit from the craziness of the comments section.

2. Move.

Do some light exercise. Some yoga maybe, or a little stretching. Nothing to strain your system; do just enough to release some of the stress from your muscles and prepare your body to cycle down for the night.

3. Eat.

Make or order in your favorite meal. Have a treat. Maybe have two. Indulge yourself a little. There will be time to work off those calories, but now is not that time. For now, feed your body as a means to feeding your soul.

4. Drink.

If it’s your thing, have a cocktail (in moderation), or a pour yourself glass of your favorite wine. I’m not much of a drinker myself, so I would likely choose decaffeinated or herbal tea. Probably chamomile.

5. Soak.

Either take a full bath, or if that is too much effort, just soak your feet. Put some Epsom Salts in the water, add some essential oils (lavender is great for relaxation), and wash the stress away. Listen to some relaxing music while you’re at it.

6. Meditate.

Go within. Self-reflect. Pray in whatever way is meaningful to you. And don’t forget to listen. Listen to your breath, your heartbeat, your inner voice. If you get any insights, write them down. Some (actually, many) people find unaided meditation difficult. If that applies to you, head over to YouTube. There is a plethora of guided meditations for you to listen to.

7. Journal.

Write away your stresses. If you need to, vent about any frustrations. Your journal is your safe space. Make sure you end on a positive note, though. Write 3 things that you’re grateful for, 3 people that you’re grateful for, and 3 things that you love about yourself.

8. Sleep.

Prepare your room in advance so that when you’re ready to go to sleep you can just get into bed. Pretend you’re in a hotel and give yourself turndown service. Dim the lights, turn down the covers, and put a little lavender essential oil on your pillow. When it’s bedtime, you’ll float away into a deep, restorative sleep. Namaste.

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Text and images ⒸLisa Hurley/@happyhappyphoenix



  1. Kathleen Hurley says:

    Well said, Lisa. All so needed if we are to thrive, especially at this time.

    1. Yes, at this time it’s especially important.

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