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Blog

Boost Your Morning Routine with This Self-Care Checklist

Lauren Demenus

I aim to make each step of my morning routine a gift to myself. This shifts my focus from seeing my morning routine as an obligation, and towards embracing this special time of reflection and preparation. 

Each morning is a blessing and an opportunity to set the tone for the rest of our day. Let's strive for mornings filled with gratitude, mindfulness and intention. Let's make self-care the priority in our morning routines. 

To get you started, I've reflected on my own routine and created this energy-boosting morning self-care checklist. Remember: routines are built slowly over time, with great patience. Proceed with self-compassion.

Give Yourself a Moment of Mindful Waking

I say aloud three things that I am grateful for before my feet touch the floor. A dear friend stretches underneath the covers and meditates on her intention for the day. Whatever you choose to do-- allow yourself a moment of mindful waking after you've turned off the alarm clock. Take a breath. Celebrate your hope for this new day.  

Record your Thoughts in a Daily Journal

Our minds are often cluttered spaces, filled with competing ideas and emotions. Journaling gives us the opportunity to understand the meaning behind the noise, to clarify our goals and feelings, and to approach our days with a greater sense of purpose. Try it for a week, even if you only have five minutes to jot down your thoughts. 

Hydrate with Hot Water and Lemon

I love caffeine in the morning, but I try to make sure the first drink I have is either a cold glass or hot mug of water with lemon. This simple, cleansing act aids digestion and brightens skin, and the bright citrus scent is a great way to boost your mood and energy levels in the AM.

Nourish Your Body

Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day, and yet for so many of us it goes by the wayside. I recommend prepping the night before with healthy, make-ahead recipes like overnight oats, chia seed pudding or smoothie packs. Not having to cook in the morning has helped me sit and enjoy my food (and my favorite cup of tea!) 

Move Your Muscles

I try to stretch or do gentle yoga for at least five to fifteen minutes every morning. When I miss a day I can always feel it in my body by the end of the afternoon! A few minutes of stretching or yoga every morning boosts energy levels and reduces muscle tension, among many other positive health benefits.

Embrace Opportunities to Treat Yourself

As I said, I strive to make every part of my routine a gift to myself. Even though I don't always have a lot of time in the morning, I incorporate products that feel luxurious into my routines. In the shower, I use our Coffee & Coconut Body Scrub to exfoliate and give myself an invigorating boost. I also apply our Whipped Body Butter for full body moisturization. By adding these special steps to my routine, I've made my mornings more relaxing and rewarding-- not to mention improved the look and feel of my skin. 

Make it Routine

The most important part of having a morning routine is consistency. Doing it every day until it becomes routine is so important, but not without help. I've created a Self-Care Checklist for you to hang on your mirror, place next to your nightstand, or wherever you spend your mornings. Use it as your morning reminder to complete each self-care habit.

Don't forget: routines are built slowly over time, with great patience. Proceed with self-compassion.

How have you built your morning routine? Share your morning meditation and energizing self-care ideas in the comments! 

Love + Light, 

Lauren 

Yoga Poses for Relaxation

Lauren Demenus

Sometimes in our high-paced, high-demand world we find ourselves burnt out, either near or at the breaking point. Abandoned without coping mechanisms, we feel overwhelmed by stress and anxiety and struggle to suppress those emotions and continue on.

In this post, I want to focus on how yoga can help us find inner peace during moments of stress and anxiety. Yoga is an incredible tool to achieve physical, mental and spiritual wellness. Creating a simple, relaxation-focused routine will strengthen your emotional resources and provide a healthy way to decompress.

Find Your Breath in Easy Pose (Sukhasana)

This simple yoga posture is an excellent way to begin a yoga routine. Ground yourself in this seated position. With your knees wide, place each foot beneath the other knee. Focus on keeping your spine straight and your breath steady. Close your eyes, and breathe slowly, perhaps repeating a positive mantra to yourself. More experienced yoga practitioners may prefer to begin with Lotus Pose (Padmasana).

Open Your Body with the Bound Angle Pose (Supta Baddha Konasana)

As you feel your breath growing steadier and your heart rate declining, ease yourself back onto your mat into the Bound Angle Pose. You may rest your arms out from the sides of your body, palms up, fold them behind your head or stretch them above you. Press the bottoms of your feet together, bringing your knees to the ground as you exhale. This hip-opening pose improves circulation and encourages deep relaxation. Close your eyes, inhaling positivity and exhaling stress.

Release Your Tension in Reclining Fish Pose (Supta Matsyendrasana)

This rejuvenating, detoxifying pose improves spinal flexibility and eases lower back, spine and hip pain. Adding this gentle stretch to your relaxation routine will relieve tension that builds up due to stress. To perform it, lie back on your mat and engage your core. Breathe in. Bend your right leg and pull it up towards your chest, and as you exhale draw your knee across the left side of your body. Rest your left hand on your right knee, and stretch your right arm to the side at shoulder height, palm up. Breathe deeply, and repeat your relaxation mantra.

Rediscover a Sense of Safety in Child's Pose (Balasana)

The ultimate relaxation position, this restful pose gently stretches your spine while restoring a sense of security. To perform this pose, kneel on the floor, sitting on your heels. Ease your body forward, laying your torso between your thighs with your hands stretched forward. Stay in this position as long as you need, allowing yourself to completely release the tension and anxiety that has been plaguing you.

Decompress from the Day in Corpse Pose (Savasana)

The final pose in this relaxation routine is the simplest. To perform corpse pose, simply lie flat on your back on your yoga mat, arms and legs gently spread. Feel free to close your eyes, or cover them with a restorative lavender flax eye pillow for deep relaxation. Breathe deeply, in and out, imagining that you are filling yourself with a warm, revitalizing light.

I encourage you to make your yoga routine a special ritual for yourself, even if it's only five or ten minutes of your day. Light a favorite candle, play some relaxing music, roll some soothing lavender oil over your temples and give yourself permission to relax.

Love + Light
Lauren

Gratitude

Lauren Demenus

I remember being five years old in my yellow raincoat and stepping out on a rainy day - being grateful for the smell of the grass and the trees, and how the flowers were being nourished. And that although rainy days didn't "look" pretty, it was still something to be grateful for.  'Til this day, gratitude anchors me in my spiritual practice. I sometimes tend to overanalyze and get in my head about things, but when I come back to gratitude, every worry seems to dissipate. 

I've found that living in a state of gratitude truly helps us to be better people. It's so easy to get caught up in the business of life.. we either find ourselves mindlessly scrolling through social media or we're "too busy" to embrace what's right in front of us. So today, and every day, I hope you take the time to honor the little things. Sip your coffee or tea slowly, love your dog, listen to a loved ones laughter, look someone in the eye and have a meaningful conversation, or, most importantly, take time to honor yourself, and offer yourself gratitude for how far you've come in this beautiful journey.

Love + Light,

Lauren

Staying Grounded + Light

Lauren Demenus

When we stay grounded & light, we keep ourselves in alignment with what's best for ourselves. Here are some tips that have helped me stay grounded with my feet firmly on the ground while keeping my heading the clouds.

Make Lists

If you're anything like me, I have a million creative ideas that flow throughout my head all day long. Keep a notebook with you and jot down any ideas for future projects, things you'd like to work on, and how you're feeling. Sometimes just putting things on paper helps us get clear.

Move Your Body

Whether it's a yoga class, dance class, or just shaking it off in the comfort of your own home, move your body! When we move our body, we let go of what doesn't serve us, we connect our feet to Mother Earth, and we get back in touch with our hearts.

Create

Color, Paint, Design... Whatever it is that allows you to create, do that. As children, we would always color, sing, paint, and create art in ways that helped us to connect to our hearts and get out of our heads without even knowing it. 

Diffuse

Whenever I'm in a funk, I diffuse Frankincense to ground myself and come back to my center. There are so many great diffuser blends that can be used to fill your space with sweet aromas and good vibes.

Smudge

Use sage or palo santo to clear your energy. As you wave the smoke around you, repeat an affirmation that you'd like to invite in. I always come back to "I flow through life with effortless ease" as I clear myself. A lot of times our mind chatter gets in the way. Fill your mind with loving thoughts instead.