Today I have spent most of my day outdoors, enjoying the beautiful April sunshine, the Rhondda hills, my son, my dog (the newest addition to the family) and my garden.  I have enjoyed spending little time sat at my laptop, and lots of time being close to nature.

Starting my day with quiet sitting and Surya Namaskar is always a good way to begin any day!

I have started to realise one of my dreams, of growing my own food in my own garden, by planting vegetable seeds into pots, and am now excited to see if the beetroot, spinach, chamomile, lavendar, lemon balm, nasturtiums, courgettes and pumpkins I have planted will give me food later in the year.

I have walked about 8 miles in beautiful hills, under bright blue skies.

I have danced and sung to music I love in the garden.

I have been living the Stressed to Serene Unchallenge, enjoying the moment, connecting with nature, practising stillness, feeling grateful, breathing deeply, and refusing to be governed by my to-do list.

I was particularly grateful to get a message of feedback from one UnChallenge participant telling me how much calmer she feels after just 8 days of the UnChallenge, and from another client telling me how much working with me is helping her!

The to-do list is still there, and there are things on it that I had hoped I would have done by today, but on a beautiful day like today has been, I think it is important to prioritise self care and do the things that make my soul sing!

I have smiled nearly all day, apart from one moment when I read a Facebook post that made me cry for a few minutes, and when I realised that the livestream I did for the Stressed to Serene group hadn’t worked, but apart from those moments, today has felt good.

I am tired now, with aching legs and joy in my heart.

I will get back to work tomorrow (but not for long as Marcus and I are hopefully going to the beach), but I am very glad that just for today, I allowed myself to do these things that make me feel serene, and stop be getting stressed.

Self care is very important.  We need to make sure that we do the things that restore and revive us to maintain physical and mental health.  For me, that is yoga, walking, getting enough sleep, plenty of water and herbal tea, healthy eating, reading for pleasure, laughing with friends and family, and smiling at myself in the mirror at least once a day (I always used to scowl and dislike what I saw in the mirror, it is so much nicer to smile at yourself!)

Next week I am recording an interview with my friend Karen Robinson, a wellbeing coach who helps people bring more self care into their life.  Karen will be sharing more about the importance of self care, and sharing some tips to help us take better care of ourselves.

If you would like to hear this interview with karen, and get access to all the other resources, tips and practices that I am sharing that could help you life a life of more ease and less stress, then join the Stressed to Serene UnChallenge, and let me help you get from Stressed to Serene!

I am going to go to bed now, happy at the end of a wonderful day, and will be back tomorrow, refreshed and energised by my day of beautiful self care.

What are your essential self care practices?  I would love to know, please share in the comments what things you do that balance you and lift your spirits.

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