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how to take care of YOU this holiday season

photo by @emma_sugi

As COVID-19 numbers are back on the rise, you may be feeling a little down this holiday season. Indoor dining was just shut down in NYC, leaving many without a job. States all over the country are starting to close back up again and are putting stay at home orders in place. To top it all off, you probably have more concerns and worries about going to visit your family and friends.

We’re here to tell you that no matter what is going on around you, it’s important now more than ever to take care of yourself. The holidays are a hard time for many, let alone with a global pandemic going on. Keep reading for some ways you can take time to slow down and focus on yourself in the busy weeks ahead.

be mindful in everything you do

What does “being mindful” mean? “Mindfulness is the practice of purposely focusing your attention on the present moment—and accepting it without judgment. Mindfulness is now being examined scientifically and has been found to be a key element in stress reduction and overall happiness.” *

Mindfulness can be incorporated into basically everything you do. Whether that be your morning wake up routine, what you do at work, commuting, or anything else you do, mindfulness will keep you grounded and appreciative of the right here and right now. You can even incorporate mindfulness into your hair routine, and since hair is what we know best, we’re going to give you an example.

Whether you are in the shower or bath, incorporate some of these steps into your routine. While you do whichever ones make sense for you, focus on your breath and imagine yourself in one of your favorite places. That could be a beach, a vacation spot, somewhere in your home, an open field, or one of your favorite restaurants. Or simply just try to empty your mind (easier said than done, though).

  • Do a hair mask: apply soulfood nourishing mask or kure intense repair mask, let it sit for 20 minutes, and bam! Soft and nourished hair.
  • Do a double cleanse: use reset pink charcoal scalp cleansing oil before the bath or shower. Apply this to dry hair and let it sit for 10 minutes before starting your usual wash routine. Results? A build-up free scalp that’s ready to take on whatever this week throws at you.
  • Add shine: while you’re taking care of yourself and your strands, add a little flash instant shine mask to the end of your wash routine for dazzling shine and superior softness. Treat yo self!

* Benefits of Mindfulness

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photo by @alixandrab

practice self-care

This term is thrown around so often that it can be hard to even know where to start when first diving into the world of self-care. The actual definition is as follows; the practice of taking an active role in protecting one's own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress. Pretty vague, we know. However, it is really up to you to determine what protecting your well-being means to you and how you will get there. So, here are some activities to take into consideration. If you do try them out, pay attention to your mood and stress levels. Do they go up or down? Then, adjust accordingly.

  • read a book: Books in any format are a great way to escape and focus on something else besides what’s stressing you out.
  • create something for your loved ones: Use your time to make cards, postcards, letters, or drawings for your friends and family. This could involve paint, coloring, embroidery; whatever puts you at peace! Not only will this take your mind off of things, but you’re also doing something nice for someone else.
  • try a new nail trend: If you WFH, you’re probably staring down at your nails quite often. So, why not give them a little visual upgrade to brighten your mood?! We love these press ons from Chillhouse; easy to switch up and so chic!
  • tik tok recipe: You know you’ve been scrolling Tik Tok nonstop, so take a night to re-create one of the many amazing recipes on the platform. Some amika fam favorites are Gigi Hadid’s spicy rigatoni, cacio e pepe, Popeyes spicy chicken sandwich, and spicy tuna crispy rice.
  • rearranging your space: We’ve all been socially distancing for almost a year now, so if you’re in a bit of a rut, try changing around your environment. Head to Pinterest for ideas for your space and get inspired.
  • wellness journal: Journaling is a great way to express your thoughts. Maybe you’re a traditional journalist; recapping big events in your life or feelings. However, there’s so many different things you can do with a journal. You can set intentions, reflect, write down what you're grateful for, and what makes you feel good.
  • drink chamomile tea before bed: Not only can this activity be part of your nighttime wind down routine, but a small 2016 study in the journal Phytomedicine found that long-term chamomile use “significantly” reduces moderate-to-severe symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder (one of the most common anxiety disorders).*
  • take a bath: Baths warm us up. Increased body temperature at night helps synchronize our natural circadian rhythms, leading to better sleep patterns, along with improved quality of sleep and overall wellbeing.

*The Cut: Will Chamomile Help Ease My Anxiety?

We hope that this insight encourages you to change the way you go about your routine. Take your time, enjoy yourself, and know that you are worth every single second!

Do you have specific things you like to do when practicing self-care? Leave a comment below.

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