If you take the time to study successful people, and how they stay successful while juggling family, significant others, work and health, you’ll see that they follow a series of daily habits, routines and rituals.
For many busy women, self-care routines are a way to maintain control during what oftentimes, feels like a frantic work week. Sundays in particular, a day that most take off from work, are a chance for women to recharge, reflect, prepare for the new week and spend time doing what is important to them for their overall wellbeing and happiness.
Four women with diverse hustles and passions shared with Exhale their Sunday routines and how they make time for self-care — whatever that might look like — and in their own words.
Starting the day
I wake up naturally without an alarm clock between 7:30 and 8 a.m., and I stay in bed until I finally feel rested, but not sluggish. I begin every day with my daily affirmation: ‘Hoy es el mejor dia de mi vida (Today is the best day of my life).’
I eat a full and delicious breakfast in the morning, cooked by my husband. It’s something that I look forward to on Sundays because on most other days, I don’t have time to eat a full breakfast.
While I have my coffee, I spend 10 minutes checking in with myself with my desire map and planner. I think about the week that has just passed: What I’m grateful for, and if I want to do anything differently. I think about my intentions for the upcoming week, and I look through my calendar to make sure that I have enough space to do it all. Then, I spend another 10 minutes reading something positive.
I move my body and spend time in nature by talking a walk outside. I also like to spend my Sundays doing something creative, whether that’s writing a poem, blogging or painting. I also like spending as much time as possible with my husband and two-year-old daughter, just being together.
At the end of each day, I also think about three things I’m grateful for and why.
Registered Nurse at Brigham and Women’s Hospital
My health is my number one priority, and my long 12-hour shifts at the hospital and late night shifts throughout the week make it very important for me to prioritize self-care. Sundays are my favorite day for self-care and preparing for the week ahead.
Starting the day
I like to wake up and sip on a hot cup of green tea while I plan out my day. I’ll also prepare chia pudding mason jars or egg muffins to have throughout the week as grab-and-go breakfasts.
Typically, I’ll make a to-do list (I’m a “list” girl!), as well as a grocery list. My to-do list may differ, but will always include some type of physical activity, usually yoga, and meal prepping.
Once I’ve made my lists, I meditate for about 10 to 20 minutes (I just got a Tibetan singing bowl for Christmas so I’ve been using that during my meditations as well). Then, I will head off to yoga, on a hike with my boyfriend and dog Reba, or to the gym.
When meal prepping, I’ll prep several snacks and at least two meals for the week and divide them into individual containers so that they’re easy for me to grab for lunch or dinners when I get home late. Prepping always includes chopping fresh vegetables for snacks, to add volume to meals (a handy trick for making meals more healthy) and increase my veggie consumption.
I spend time with my boyfriend and Reba, and we’ll go on a walk and try to get some fresh air. Finally, I try to wind down my Sunday with some reflection, by journaling and using my planner to prepare my mind for the week ahead and set goals that I have.
As a makeup artist, Sundays are a 50/50 split: Half of the time, I have bookings for makeup trials, weddings or photo shoots. But, on the Sundays I’m not booked, I believe they should be lazy days. I take it super easy waking up. I usually hang out for a while and do nothing.
Then, I do at least 30 minutes of exercise. I go to the gym, swim or take a leisurely walk — depending on the season.
I usually just chill by myself or with my family. I typically see my friends on Friday or Saturday nights, so Sunday is usually my ‘me’ day. I always watch one of my favorite movies.
As a business owner, I create my own schedule. I’m a one-woman operation. I prep for my week on Mondays instead — I strictly designate Sundays as “no-stress” days.
I always do my at-home facials at night before bed. I feel that it helps me relax and unwind. Believe it or not, it helps me have more energy for the week, too.
My at-home facial includes the following steps:
- Mask removal & toner
- Beauty Water
- Night cream/sleep mask
Self-care is how I recharge my batteries so I can effectively run my two businesses and be the best version of myself. I usually can’t take a full day off, but I integrate specific activities in my daily routine to ensure I’m taking the best possible care of myself.
Starting the day
On days where I don’t have to work early in the morning, I have a big breakfast, and if it happens to be a holiday, I treat myself to a mimosa or a glass of champagne followed by a nap or a movie. Whenever possible, I watch a movie once a week.
I do my daily meditation practice and exercise. I check in with my loved ones and friends on a daily basis and connect with my family overseas on the phone at least once a week. I also try to get at least one massage a month and travel as often as I can, even if only for a weekend or day trip.
Baking relaxes me tremendously, so I try to do it as often as I can. My favorite thing to do when I have a full day off is at-home facials, masks and body scrubs. I also read fiction books, particularly young adult fiction.
Doing one or a combination of any of these activities allows me to stay physically strong and mentally healthy, so I that can provide an excellent service to my clients and continue to grow my business.