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Self Care Is Key This Year!

News | January 27, 2020

With the holidays firmly behind us and regular schedules in full-flow, we can all feel a little low. There’s the ongoing battle of trying to maintain ill-fated new year’s resolutions, and frosty mornings and dark nights can bring even the cheeriest person down. Feeling perky and factoring in time for self-care can be challenging for busy folks.

Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to reclaim some ‘me time.’ Let’s switch the narrative away from romance for one second — let’s consider this date a reminder to love yourself, too! Ultimately, self care means taking time to care for yourself properly and attend to your physical and mental wellbeing. Doing this will let you be there for the people that you love and care for most — and that means everyone’s a winner! So, without further ado, here are our …

Top 5 Tips For Self Care This February!

1. Start Journaling:

Take time each day to write out your thoughts, goals and dreams. There are many merits to daily journaling, with reduced stress being one according to this Health Line article: 

“Patients, families, and healthcare practitioners from a children’s hospital reported a reduction in stress levels after completing this journaling exercise:

  • write three things you’re grateful for
  • write the story of your life in six words
  • write three wishes you have

In a follow-up study 12 to 18 months later, 85 percent of the participants reported that the writing exercise was helpful. Fifty-nine percent continued using writing to cope with stress.”

2. Exercise:

Take just 15 to 20 minutes each day to start (you can increase this incrementally as your endurance grows). Go for a walk, do yoga or pilates (YouTube has some great, free videos), take a jog around the block or offer to walk your neighbour’s dog. All in all, physical activity can snap you out of doldrums, spark some inspiration and make you feel better about your health!

3. Get Outside: According to a 2017 survey, “Almost 30 percent of Canadians spend less than 30 minutes outdoors every week, which is less than five minutes each day.  Meanwhile, 64 percent of adult Canadians spend less than two hours outside per week.”

We’re not saying that you need to hike out into the wilderness. But do try to bundle up and enjoy your morning coffee on your balcony, walk the last leg of your TTC ride home or walk to the local coffee shop instead of taking the bus when the weather is right.

4. Connect: City-living as an adult can be isolating. Check out your local library for classes and events. Book clubs are a great way to keep busy both socially and mentally! Visit a music store and loan an instrument. Join a sports team (there are some great beginner leagues in Toronto!) or visit websites like EventBrite for in-person or virtual gatherings (I’ve really enjoyed some of the virtual cooking classes on Eventbrite!).

5. Treat Yourself! While self care most certainly isn’t about consumerism, treating yourself is always a nice way to boost your spirits. Buy the fancy coffee that you regularly forgo, pick up the nail polish you’ve been eyeing, or get tickets to the show you’ve had tabbed on your laptop for weeks!

We’ve selected some handmade products that may help you on your road to relaxation and wellbeing.

Stop by the Arts Market’s four locations from February 1st to the 14th and you’ll find several products marked by a heart-shaped sign: these are perfect gift ideas and ways to take care of YOU this Valentine’s Day!

  • At our Leslieville location, Becca, creator of Knots and Clay has a wonderful selection of hand-thrown mugs and bowls in an array of unique textures and earthy glaze combinations. These handmade treasures make the perfect vessel for a warm cup of tea or a nice bowl of soup — ideal for those looking to beat the winter blues!
  • Everyone loves chocolate. Avoid the obvious grocery store box of chocs and get something a little more exciting (and unique!). At our Riverside location, you can get your chocolate fix with Alice’s treats! Her shop Ecila Sake Chocolates specializes in combining the delicate flavours of Sake and chocolate. Her innovative recipes and chocolate designs will be sure to satisfy any sweet tooth!
  • Over at our College Street location (by Ossington), The Luna Craft booth is chock-full of darling, whimsical creations, intricate crochet jewelry and these beautiful bookmarks to name just a few options. If you’re an avid reader, these floral bookmarks are the perfect page-saver.

  • Last but not least, Sara’s Soaps and Candles (available in all locations) creates hand-poured, soy wax candles. The merits of soy wax? It offers a longer burn time, is pet friendly and it’s an environmentally conscious medium — a perfect mix for manifesting a soothing atmosphere. Sara’s scents are influenced by her travels throughout Canada. Recently added: a wellness collection that includes scents like clarity, vitality and meditate. Ideal notes for your self care journey!

Picture this: Sitting down with a warming beverage in your Knots and Clay mug, nibbling on some Ecila Sake Chocolates, flipping through a good book with your Luna Craft bookmark, and smelling a beautiful scented candle from Sara’s Soaps and Candles. We’re feeling relaxed already!

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