Wednesday, August 02, 2023

My Summer Self-Care Routine

My Summer Self-Care Routine - on the creek blog //

It has been a self-care summer for me.

My son has been spending a lot of time at Grandma's house this summer, so I have been taking the opportunity to get in a lot of self-care.

I'll go into my self-care routine later in this post, but here's a breakdown of self-care & some ideas for your own routine.

What is self-care?

Self-care is actively preserving and improving one's well-being, health, and happiness, especially during stress. This can include a wide range of activities such as getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, meditating or practicing mindfulness, engaging in hobbies or activities that bring joy, connecting with friends and loved ones, seeking professional help when needed, and setting boundaries to prioritize one's own needs.

Self-care is not selfish but necessary to maintain a healthy and balanced life. By prioritizing self-care, you can better manage stress, reduce the risk of burnout, and improve overall physical and mental health. While I still have a long way to go, I am working self-care into my daily routine.

I've developed a little nighttime routine that helps me wind down & sleep better.

My Summer Self-Care Routine - on the creek blog //

First, I make my 'little drink,' which is tart cherry juice and caffeine-free lemon-lime soda. I know soda isn't the best, so I am looking into other things, but that's what I had when I started my routine. Sometimes, I add a little sorbet that I already have. That's a lemon sorbet popsicle in the pictures!

I heard that tart cherries are helpful for sleep, so I looked into it & found a study done by Dr. Russell Reiter, a renowned sleep researcher. The study found that drinking tart cherry juice increased melatonin levels in the body, a hormone that regulates sleep. The participants who consumed the tart cherry juice reported better sleep, less difficulty falling asleep, and reduced daytime sleepiness.

The study also found that the participants who drank the cherry juice had increased total sleep time and efficiency. The cherry juice helped regulate the participants' sleep-wake cycle, essential for maintaining a healthy sleep pattern.

The benefits of tart cherry juice for sleep have been attributed to its high concentration of natural melatonin. This powerful antioxidant helps regulate sleep. Melatonin allows the body to recognize when it's time to sleep and when it's time to wake up.

It may be more of a routine for me than melatonin. Still, I have cut back on my melatonin gummies and fallen asleep faster.

I'm not a healthcare professional, so I honestly don't know.

After my drink, I take a hot shower. 

Taking a hot shower before bedtime can have many benefits for your sleep. Firstly, hot water can help relax your muscles, making it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night. Additionally, the heat from the shower can help to soothe any aches or pains you may be experiencing, which can also improve your sleep quality.

My Summer Self-Care Routine - on the creek blog //

Another benefit of a hot shower before bed is that it can help regulate your body temperature. When you get out of the shower, your body temperature will drop, which can help signal your body that it's time to sleep. This can be especially helpful if you have trouble falling asleep because you feel too hot or cold.

Adding those two simple things into my nighttime routine has made an enormous difference.

The information provided is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please understand that the self-care routine discussed is not a substitute for medical treatment and should be used with professional medical care.

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