I’m in London enjoying this beautiful city during the holidays and preparing to give a talk on Monday night about The Magic of Self Care at the Cecil Sharp House on Regent’s Park Rd.
Self-care, especially at this time of year, can mean so many things – spending money wisely, eating moderately rather than overindulging, or putting limits on how many social dates you schedule in your calendar. Smart choices like these can set you up for a healthier and happier New Year.
But what are the other benefits of practicing good self-care, the ones besides avoiding guilt, shame and regret? Can the practice of extreme self-care be a catalyst for adding more joy and contentment to your life? Can it invite something unexpected and special to show up?
I remember one Christmas Eve, when I gave myself the pleasure of an unscheduled afternoon, and experienced a little magic. Rather than get caught up in the stress of last-minute shopping, I decided to walk the streets of a quaint town near our home to take in the festive window displays and the holiday music that drifted out onto the streets. At one point it even started to snow and, as I turned a corner, I walked straight into my childhood best friend – someone I hadn’t seen in more than two decades! Surprised and delighted, we ended up in a café talking for hours, reminiscing about our lives and our early adolescent dreams. Our chance meeting felt divinely inspired and it’s an afternoon I’ll never forget.
A similar surprise happened to me this morning while here in London. I woke up from a dream thinking about my spiritual life (something that’s been on my mind a lot lately) so I pulled out my computer to write about some of the questions inspired by the dream. Then I showered and left to meet a friend for breakfast in the hotel dining room.
When I arrived at the table, I found my friend sitting with an older woman, someone she invited to join us, talking about faith and reason, and the difference between the false self (ego) and the authentic self (the soul). I smiled at the synchronicity having just been writing about similar topics.
This is going to be a great breakfast, I thought to myself.
And it was. For the next two hours, we talked about so many wonderful things – the power of prayer, living with faith, and what it means to feel truly seen and loved by a power greater than ourselves. As an act of self-care, I took a risk and talked openly and honestly about feeling a bit spiritually lost these days as I search for a more feminine way to stay connected to the Divine. My questioning was met with attentive ears and after breakfast I received an email from the older woman who provided some of the answers I was searching for.
I love when this happens – when we’re met with surprises when we take good care of ourselves. The practice of self-care at its foundation, is learning to align ourselves with the power of the Universe so it can easily operate on our behalf. Each time we treat ourselves well, it’s as if we are proclaiming: “I am worthy of good in my life and I open my heart and hands to receive it now.”
That’s an affirmation to keep in mind as we head full on into the holidays this week. Care for yourself. Give yourself more time and space than you think you need (or deserve). Release expectations and open yourself up to a little magic.
Let the Universe surprise you… ❤️
PS – If you’re looking for a holiday gift for that special someone who needs to take better care of herself (or himself), please consider, The Art of Extreme Self Care. A revised and updated version is now available where all books are sold and you can get a copy of the eBook version for just $1.99 wherever you purchase your electronic books.
Need a little Divine Direction? Use the “Touch of Grace” button on our homepage here.