The Gift of Self Care

It’s that time of year again! It’s the time when we prepare ourselves, consciously or unconsciously, for endings and beginnings, celebrations and hibernations. The end of year holidays are a time when our thoughts turn to family, celebrating, time off from work and gift giving, although not necessarily in that order. For many people, and for many reasons, this time of year and the holidays are more stressful than they are pleasurable.

These days of festivities and transitions can be a time when we give ourselves special permission to indulge and extend ourselves in many ways. We might allow ourselves to overindulge with both food and drink (just one more…) at the various parties we give and attend. We relax our grip on our wallets and purse strings as we spend more money than we have to buy those perfect gifts (But it was such a good deal!). With extra time off work, we might also allow ourselves to sleep in a little longer and more often. Though these are some of life’s little perks to which we look forward, they can also be underlying contributors to yearend tensions.

Overindulgence in spirits and edibles can result in physiological stress as our bodies endeavor to process, assimilate and eliminate the excess. Additionally, overconsumption can contribute to emotional and psychological stress as we try to process, assimilate, integrate and eliminate, if necessary, our feelings about our behavior. This is true particularly if we feel remorse or guilty for them. Chastising our selves after the fact and projecting negative outcomes for our actions (I can’t believe I made such a pig of myself. I’m sure I’ve gained ten pounds overnight!) only make matters worse. Financial excess can elicit similar emotional and psychological responses while a change in sleep patterns may also contribute to physiological stress as the body’s routine is interrupted. Practicing the old adage, “Everything in moderation.” doesn’t exactly allow for a good time!

Consider, however, that there just might be a healthy compromise between indulgence and moderation that also satisfies the festive and transitional aspects of the season. This compromise can be given as a gift, kept for oneself or become a shared experience. Though it can be thought of as indulgent, caring for oneself can also be considered a healthy response to the stressors of the endings, the beginnings, the celebrations and the hibernations. Indeed, some might consider it a necessary component to the season! At New Body Therapeutics in Northville, self care is considered a necessary component not just for the season but for a healthy life throughout the year.

The gift of self care is likely the greatest gift one can give, not only to others but just as equally, if not more importantly, to your self. Another way of thinking about self care is that you cannot draw water from a dry well. In this season of giving, it is crucial to our well being to make sure we are replenishing ourselves so we have enough to keep giving. Helping those you love to replenish their wells is a wonderful way to show you care. The easiest and most fun way to give the gift of self care is to gift a massage, bodywork or facial. Bodywork can be an essential experience before, during and after the holidays. It can help relax the body, relieve muscle tension, reduce mental tension, renew our spirit and help to regenerate our physical beings.

Gifting massage, bodywork or facials can also offer variety in the giving. Massage can be combined with a facial, can be experienced with a partner (or a really good friend) as a couples massage, they can be purchased as a package for extended benefits or for multiple giving. New Body Therapeutics in Northville offers a selection of services and a terrific package deal for the holidays.

A facial is a self care gift worth considering. Another old adage says, “When you look good, you feel good.” Facials, however, are not just about looking good. Not only are they extremely relaxing but they are considered a preventative measure for maintaining healthy skin. Our face is the main portal through which we sense and perceive the world and the world senses and perceives us. Next to our internal systems, our face is likely the most active part of our bodies. Particularly rejuvenating is the facelift massage offered at New Body Therapeutics. The combination of deep cleansing and extended facial massage truly uplifts both the skin and the spirit.

The reverse of the quote above is also true: When you feel good, you look good. This year, give the gift of self care to yourself and others. It will contribute to a happier, healthier and more beautiful holiday season and a more beautiful world!

Written by Karen Drescosky, NCTMB, ABMP of New Body Therapeutics.

New Body Therapeutics is owned by Angela Avigne and is located at 335 N. Center St. in Northville. They are open 7 days a week, staffs 15 massage therapists and 4 estheticians, contact them at: 248-348-2770 or visit: www.newbodytherapy.com.

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About the writer: Penny Golden

Publisher of the Body Mind Spirit Guide

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