Welcome to "Mindful Music Monday Mug" & "Love Yourself Challenge" . We are informal here. No perfect presentation of ourselves but loving the way we are with all the frizzy hair, laughing lines around our eyes and the messy home too!
Welcome back self-care ninjas! How has your week been? I hope it was wonderful and that the new week gives you much to smile about.
For the month of March “Mindful Music Monday Mug” has an added bonus: I am taking part in a challenge called “Love Yourself” by Carol Anne from “Therapy Bits” in which she invites us to find something we love about ourselves every day. One heck of a challenge I would say. But maybe it’s not so difficult for you?
Here is what Carol Anne wrote on the first day of the challenge:
"List something, or more than one thing, you love about yourself, for the entire month of march!
Each day, we’ll make a daily post calling it love yourself challenge, and list what you love about yourself!"
Self-care and Loving yourself!
I believe that part of caring for ourselves is to develop healthy self-esteem especially if you live with a mental health problem. I often find it rather hard to find things that I like about myself so finding 31 of them is definitely a challenge.
And I am taking the challenge, Carol Anne! Thanks for hosting it!!!
Love Yourself Challenge Day 3
It’s only day 3 (well day 4 really but I am one day behind) and I already struggle to find something to love about myself. Maybe there is something though:
I love about myself that I care.
I care about my family, friends, fellow bloggers and what goes on in the world. I might not always be too good at showing this but one of my daily self-care tasks is to send out blessings to those who need it. Ah, yes, I also love that I care about myself!
You can find Carol Anne's post to day 3 here.
Will you take part too?
And what about you? What do you love about yourself? And are you ready to take part in Carol Anne’s “Love Yourself Challenge”? If so, please head over to her blog and let her know!
Love Yourself Challenge on Therapy Bits
What’s in our mugs this week?
And why mugs in this blog feature?
If you have signed up for the Bee SelfCaring/The Bee Writes… newsletter you got a download about easy daily steps to self-care. One of which is my “Self-appreciation mug”. No, it does not mean to get arrogant about yourself it means to allow yourself a mug (or glass) of your favourite beverage while contemplating what you have achieved and giving yourself praise for it.
This is a great way to raise your self-esteem and to realise how far you have come which in turn will encourage to make more changes for the better.
Well, it’s more something for glasses than mugs this week but delicious all the same. One of the things that are important for physical self-care is to drink enough. We are told to drink water but not everybody likes to drink water in pure form. So I found a video by the American Heart Association which gives you several recipes for infused water. Enjoy:
Video Credit: American Heart Association via YouTube
That sounds rather refreshing, doesn’t it? I like these suggestions very much and will try them out soon but currently, stay with my cup of tea.
Experiences with “Singing in the Rain” Week 2 “Belly Breathing”
Have you had the chance to integrate or re-discover Belly Breathing that Rachel Kelly introduces you to in week 2 of her “Singing in the Rain” book? And what were your experiences?
Last week has given me a big aha moment. I am suffering from pains in my stomach/diaphragm area for some time. So far I had thought it is a sore stomach and changing my diet would make a difference. It has but that feeling of having a rock in that area didn’t go away. I used to have it when I felt very anxious but since I am not working anymore my anxiety has nearly gone away.
So when I started doing belly breathing again I realised that I had started to breathe more into the chest part of my lungs and that breathing into my belly felt rather difficult. It feels like my diaphragm is programmed to stop me from breathing into my belly. The diaphragm is a layer of muscles that build a barrier between your abdominal area and the area that contains the heart and lung. Now, I am not a doctor and also haven’t seen one but I assume with my unnatural breathing I created some sort of muscle pain in the diaphragm because it felt more relaxed and less painful when I started the breathing exercise. So I keep doing it daily to bring myself back to a healthy breathing rhythm
I hope your experiences were a lot more positive! Feel free to share them in the comments.
Singing in the Rain ~ Week 3 ~ Rising Early
Ok, this weeks topic from “Singing in the Rain” is probably a big NO-NO for many people: Rising early!
Rachel Kelly mentions that scientists found out that there are lark, owl and in-between people: Larks naturally rise early, owls are good at staying up late and the in-between people are a mixture of both. However, it is more healthy for us to rise early as this maintains a healthy sleeping rhythm and if we allow ourselves to be in sunlight early it helps us to fall asleep well too. She also explains that it helps a lot to go through the day balanced if you do not have to hurry to get to work. Sounds like a no-brainer but we so often just can’t get ourselves out of bed and rather hurry along without breakfast and our phones in front of our faces. I assume though we all had days when we got up early had a lovely breakfast and went to work without hurry and the rest of the day went incredibly well so we can easily see that she is right.
The question is how to get ourselves to rise earlier. Often we try to do it all at once and then wonder why it doesn’t work. Our bodies are creatures of routine and when our routine is broken they don’t react well. So Rachel Kelly suggests to get up five minutes earlier every day for as long as you reach the time you want to get up to have a hurry free morning.
That, of course, is different for everybody. It’s also different for everybody what to do with this extra time. The key is to do things that help you feel less stressed: do yoga, have a long luxurious breakfast, meditate, just enjoy a long cup of tea, write a journal, draw, dance or have a bath… you name your fav treat in the morning and allow yourself to do it and find out what difference it makes!
I encourage you to check out Rachel's book to find out more information on why rising early is a good idea!
Singing in the Rain ~ An Inspirational Workbook by Rachel Kelly on Amazon
(I am not affiliated with Rachel Kelly and get no rewards for this suggestion)
Mindfulness in March
This week I am introducing you to One Mind Dharma and a morning meditation that you might want to integrate in your more restful morning. It is a great way to keep yourself balanced and guided meditations are great especially if you are just starting out with meditation and mindfulness.
Video Credit: One Mind Dharma via YouTube who wrote there:
Listen to One Mind Dharma's 5 minute guided morning meditation to start your day off right! This is from a recent post in which we discuss morning meditation and how to get started with a daily practice. This is a mindfulness meditation practice, and suitable for beginners!
Visit us at www.OneMindDharma.com/morning-meditation for more about us!
This weeks Music
This week I encourage you to create a music list on your preferred music listening app/page/device that helps you to wake up. That can be something quiet like instrumental music or some raging rock or punk or a mixture of both. You can experiment what helps you best but it’s worth doing because everything goes better with music as they say in Germany.
My current morning list has to do with chakra clearing and this is one of its pieces:
Video Credit: Meditative Mind via YouTube
Mindful Music Monday Mug Chat
Self-care is especially important when times are rough and too much is going on everywhere. So I believe it is good to meet up and have a cuppa together and share your story. However, we cannot always do that physically and so I have started the "Mindful Music Monday Mug Chat". You can join in with this link every Tuesday unless differently stated at 1 pm GMT (that is London time ~ please find your time here)
The link will ask you if you want to open it in the Skype app but you can open it online too. You can either join as a guest or sign in with your Microsoft account. For now, we are going to have a written conversation but we’ll keep an open mind and see where it will lead us.
What else do you need? A cup of tea, coffee or any other of your favourite beverage, a song to share and a polite manner. If you join in on the web you can only share files from your laptop or computer but if you join with an account you can also share YouTube videos, searches and other files to make our conversation more interesting.
I am looking forward to meeting you there!
And to remind ourselves how to take part:
SUGGESTIONS ON HOW TO TAKE PART IN THE MINDFUL MUSIC MONDAY MUG
~ I invite you to appreciate yourself with a cup of your favourite beverage or the recipe I introduce in this post
~Additionally I offer you questions, exercises and ideas to explore self-care, self-love and self-improvement.
~ I invite you to share your ideas and experiences in the comments or write a blog post about it and leave the link in the comments.
~ Also feel free to visit the blogs of our fellow self-care explorer ninjas.
Now dear self-care explorer ninja’s
Come, chat about self-care
Share some great music
And have lots of fun!
I am not a health professional. My posts describe my thoughts, my experiences and my conclusions about life, mental health and self-improvement. My described actions always go alongside therapy and do not substitute professional advice by a health professional be it a doctor, therapist or counsellor.
I invite you to try out self-care tools, however, if any of these make you feel uncomfortable please stop and do not go further ahead. Also, if any of the tools suggested bring up issues that need dealing with do not hesitate to reach out for professional help. To recognise when you need to stop and when to reach out for professional or any other help is one important part to learn when it comes to self-care.
Please look here if you need further guidance:
Government of Canada
Please stay a little longer and discover music and good news on The Bee Writes... at Wordpress. You are more into photography? Please find my photo posts for Wordless Wednesday on Bee Wordless... on Blogger. Thanks!
Just one more thing before you go: The hospital that is treating me for cancer is fundraising for a dedicated breast cancer unit which would allow same-day diagnosis and better premises for patients and staff.
Please, if you can spare a little money hop over to their Just Giving Page and give as little or much as you can. Or share the page on your social media. Your support means a lot to me! Thank you very much.
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