Busy to Intentional in 5 Steps

There can be fine line between living life and enjoying life. The line gets even thinner when you add being a caregiver and/or kids into the mix. If you know, you know.

Many of us have to work for a living and when you add in family, friends, school, sports, activities, errands, and appointments the list seems to constantly grow. I saw a survey a while back from Pew Research Center that said over 60% of adults (in the U.S.) felt too busy to enjoy life, at least sometimes. And 12% said that they felt that way all or most of the time. Yikes, that’s not good!

If you know me at all, then you know how important I believe it is to create a self-care routine. I also know many of you shake your head yes to the idea of self-care, but at least 60% of you also feel like you just don’t have time for self-care.

It’s really about reframing what you think self-care is and being willing to train yourself to support your body, mind, and soul.

Trust me, I get it. I may [only] have one kid, but there are times I overly involve myself with things that aren’t fulfilling, and I work myself into a busy schedule too. The one thing that I may do differently however is ensure that I have time built into my day to nourish and edify my mind, body and soul. 

I’m going to share 5 simple steps to incorporate self-care into your daily routine and a road map to what that can look like so you can turn your time from simply being busy to being intentional. 

Though you don't have to use oils, you'll also learn how to incorporate essential oils into each of the steps with ease. I do believe self-care is personal, meaning it should be customized to your own likes. So, use this as a framework to help turn your time from busy to intentional, and take some control in your own self-care journey by cultivating a routine to improve your overall state of being.

Turn Your Time from Busy to Intentional in 5 Steps

1. Hydrate 
I told you these were simple! The idea here is to ultimately drink half your body weight in ounces each day. This is one of the simplest forms of self-care and yet one that eludes many of us because of our routine, access to a bathroom, habits, or because water is just not satisfying. 

Here are a few tips that work for me. One of the first things I do in the morning is drink 20oz of water. This helps to quinch thirst, balance the lymphatic system, boost metabolism, supports healthy skin, and clears out toxins. Some people enjoy sipping on water that has essential oils added to it – citrus oils are a super popular choice because of their taste and health benefits. At least one of my glasses of water in the morning has essential oils added to it. Mine is usually a 12oz mug of hot water and I rotate between 3 choices: 1-2 drops of Lemon, 1 drop Peppermint and Lemon, or 2 drops Lemon and 1 drop Ginger with some raw honey.

If you're open to trying essential oils in your water, here's are some top suggestions and what the oil can do for your health.

2. Gratitude 
Creating a gratitude practice helps with our mindset. It encourages you to lean into more positive emotions and appreciate the little things (too). If you add a little note as to why you’re grateful for it, you can also look back on them and have a short and sweet journal of some of the simple things in life that bring you joy and why. There are many different suggestions when it comes to practicing gratitude – how many to list and the time of day to name a couple. This is where your personal preferences kick in. What works for me is writing one thing I’m grateful for each morning. I’ve found that it helps me to kick-off my day thinking more positively.

Every morning I apply Balance Grounding Blend to the bottoms of feet before I begin my gratitude practice. If you enjoy diffusing try this gratitude diffuser blend of 4 drops Wild Orange and 3 drops each of Clove and Ginger. I won't go into here, but you'll have to trust me on the emotional benefits of those particular oils and why they're good to incorporate into your gratitude practice.


3. Affirmations
The cool thing about repeating an affirmation or positive phrase to yourself is that it doesn't have to be formal. And since it takes just a few seconds the only excuse you have is failure to remember to do it. Like with a gratitude practice, if you're consistent, over time your positive affirmations will replace your negative thoughts and beliefs.

The best way I've found to build affirmations into my self-care routine is to put them on my bathroom mirror. This allows me to think about and recite a couple affirmations to myself while I'm brushing my teeth, which also means I'm remembering to do it at least twice a day. 

My husband and I also try to be very intentional with the words we choose with certain phrases that are spoken on a regular basis. For example, every morning when I bid my son a good day, I say "Make it a great day." The word "make" is a seed planted that he has the choice on how he reacts throughout his day. Another example between my husband and I is when we're discussing who will pick up or take our son to school. Instead of saying "Do I have to take Talon to school tomorrow?" we'll instead say "Do I get to take Talon to school tomorrow?". Simply replacing the word have with get will help your brain think positive thoughts.  

Being even more intentional with your affirmation routine you can use essential oils to help anchor in the affirmation statement. Below are some ideas of affirmations along with the essential oil that emotionally supports the statement.

4. Outdoors 
It’s been scientifically proven that being outside in nature can increase your health and wellbeing in less than 20 minutes per day. Not only is spending time outdoors good for your mental health but improves your physical health too. On those days where it’s hard to find time to get out in nature or you’re just longing to be outdoors a little longer using essential oils can help fill the gap. I'll even open my sunroof, roll my windows down or diffuse in my vehicle to feel closer to nature.

Here are two simple diffuser blends:
Walking on Sunshine - 1 drop Lime, 3 drops Hawaiian Sandalwood & 4 drops Grapefruit
Feeling One with Nature - 2 drops each: Douglas Fir, Cypress & Arborvitae

5. Podcasts/Music 
Listening to upbeat music or taking in an inspiring, uplifting, or encouraging podcast is an excellent and productive way to add self-care into your day. This can be done at work, during a commute, cooking, and even while you’re getting ready in the morning. Podcasts have great entertainment value. Aside from the knowledge you may gain and the laughter or intrigue you experience; you can also feel good about cutting down on your screen time. Listening to upbeat music goes beyond the emotional benefits of elevating our mood. Music allows for creativity, can decrease pain, and increases our blood flow. Throw in a couple dance moves and you've just added a little cardio into your day too.

There's not a lack of options when it comes to music or podcasts. Here are some noteworthy podcasts just in case you need a little help in that department. One that I listen to daily is The Upside with Callie & Jeff. I listen to The Rachel Hollis show regularly, but I sift through the titles and find the topics that are appealing to me. Again, the awesome thing about self-care is that it's personal and you get to choose what works best for you.

Adding an essential oil here is pretty simple. What do you want from the oil, emotional support...focus...? Chose an essential oil to diffuse or put on your pulse points that will help you to accomplish your goal. Citrus oils are uplifting, tree oils tend to be grounding, and oils like Peppermint or Rosemary can help you focus.

If you have a self-care tip that you find is super easy to incorporate or you want to give a shoutout to a podcast that it super fun or helpful share them in the comments so we can all benefit.

If you’re an essential oil lover, you'll also learn how to incorporate oils into each of the steps with ease. 

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