For many, the beginning of a new year signifies an opportunity for change, growth and new habits. The traditional vows of losing weight, eating healthier and exercising more are, more often than not, abandoned by February simply because they are too broad.
Perhaps a change in mindset can help.
Instead of focusing on one thing, or one resolution, self-care emphasizes taking time to do things that improve both physical and mental health.
The approach is unique to each person with differing health behaviors, but the goals are the same. Managing stress to lower the risk of illness, and focusing on one’s well-being make up the core of self-care.
According to an article in Psychology Today, two in three people in America do not practice self-care and only 39 percent of men say they consistently make time for it, while 32 percent of women do.
Local business professionals agree, stressing the importance of tuning into our own needs.
“We get so caught up in our busy lives that we forget to listen to our bodies,” says Katie Lunde, owner and head coach of FXB Anthem.
“We have constant stress from phones, social media and we do not take the time to disconnect,” says Sheldon Kobylanski, spa director at Hand & Stone Massage & Facial Spa in Anthem. “It becomes even more important to have somewhere to go or some way to block out the outside world.”
The National Institute of Mental Health states that even small acts of self-care in daily life can have a big impact. Studies show when we place importance on self-care, we are more freely able to show up for ourselves and for others.
Self-care routines could include a combination of exercising, eating healthier, yoga, reading, journaling, at-home spa treatments, to name a few ideas. For others, it could include regular or more trips to the salon for hair, skin and nails, facials, massage and anything that promotes relaxation and rest for the body and mind.
Staying In Tune
A big component of self-care is also knowing when to rest and set boundaries.
“If your body is telling you you’re exhausted it would be way more beneficial for you to relax, have a good meal and come back into the gym and try again the next day,” Lunde told Valley Vibe.
FXB’s approach to fitness goes beyond workout classes and routines, and is more focused on a lifestyle approach to finding balance in the areas of physical health, nutrition and relaxation.
“We’re trying to change people’s mindset to be excited to go to the gym among a community of like-minded members with a goal of integrating a healthier lifestyle into their lives,” she said. Recovery is just as important.
For those starting a new workout plan Lunde offered the following advice about knowing when to give your body a break from exercise, “Focus on something that works for you and gets you in a better state of mind… maybe it’s a walk instead of a workout, or a bubble bath. It’s discovering what’s going to be most beneficial for you to set yourself up for success going forward.”
A good massage can help your body recover quickly and get you back to the gym sooner, too.
A big part of helping clients get back to their regular activities is based on the customer service they receive, says Kobylanski of Hand & Stone’s approach.
“We want to work with our guests one-on-one to really listen to them so we can customize the treatment to their needs, and hopefully be that place they can count on to visit when they want to disconnect,” Kobylanski said. Facials are another self-care treatment which also include a scalp massage.
For even deeper healing and relaxation, 80-minute sessions are offered, along with aromatherapy enhancements, such as hot stones, Himalayan salt stones and CBD.
Hand & Stone Anthem
39504 N. Daisy Mountain Drive #102, Anthem
Massage, facial and hair removal services, with a customized approach and a variety of enhancements offered, including aromatherapy, hot stones, and CBD infused massage treatments. Monthly memberships available.
3668 W Anthem Way
Suite B-132, Anthem
Customized training with cardio kickboxing and strength training, along with nutritional guidance. Offering a variety of membership options including monthly options, drop-ins, 10-week challenges. Small class sizes with morning and afternoon class times.
By Karen Goveia | [email protected]
Photos Courtesy Lauren Ashley Photography & Hand & Stone Anthem