When you think of a self care routine, you’re probably thinking of a calm yoga workout, an afternoon in the sun feeling spongy grass underneath your feet, a quiet bubble bath where no one can disturb you — with a glass of wine and face-mask to boot! (Ah, if only!)
Perhaps you imagine sitting on the couch cuddled up with your favorite book, a spa day, a seaside walk feeling the sand underneath your feet... What you’re probably not thinking is that you can do it in five minutes.
Self care routines often seem like work in and of themselves, but they don’t have to be.
If you’re too busy to carve out time to create a routine to recharge and replenish, chances are you’re in most desperate need of a self care routine than anyone else. To be perfectly honest:
You can’t pour from an empty cup.
If you spend most of your day running errands, working an eight-hour-plus job, doing homework, picking up and dropping off kids, feeding others, re-checking homework, setting up meetings (or worse - attending said meetings) it can be very easy to let your own needs fall to the sidelines.
And that only leads to fatigue, crankiness, and unwanted frown lines.
Even when you’re on a plane going down the instructions are simple: put the mask on yourself before you assist anyone else. And that’s where the proverbial cup (aka you) comes in: are you putting on the mask first?
This easy 5-Minute self care routine will get you feeling a little calmer and a little less empty. Don’t be fooled by the amount of time--it can be a lifesaver!
Plus we threw some turmeric powder in so that instead of standing over the kitchen sink with a glass of red wine at 11:30 PM wondering where the day went (and making your liver go “whyyy?”) You give your liver a break, and put an end, slowly but surely, to your stress levels.
The Unbelievably Effective - Yet Extremely Easy - 5 Min Self Care Routine
We know what you’re thinking: is it really five minutes? Can it even work? So go ahead - time us! Better yet, time yourself when you put it into practice (and then maybe stop that for your own good?)
What you’ll need for your self care routine:
- Teapot or warm water (you can even sneak this at work!)
- A notebook or pad to write on (you can use your phone, but switch to airplane mode)
- Something YOU like to read: a magazine or book that doesn’t count as homework or heart-beat-spiking news
- Turmeric powder tea (we’ll make this one extra easy for you below)
- A timer - for you skeptic rascals*
*You don’t actually need a timer. Let’s get to it.
#1 Start with Alternate Nostril Breathing (1 min!):
Put some water in a teapot to boil, let it warm up while you cool down. Find a comfortable spot to sit in, then get ready to breathe:
- Sit comfortably with your spine as straight as you can (think head over heart and heart over pelvis)
- Take the three middle fingers of your favorite hand and bend them towards your palm, your pinky and thumb should be left extended. Essentially, do the surfer “hang loose” sign (are you smiling already?)
- For the sake of this example, let’s use our right hand, but you can do either. Take the thumb up to your right nostril and cover it:
- Take a deep breath in, hold it at the top, and the place your pinky finger on the left nostril to cover it, breathe out -all the way out until no air is left.
- With your pinky still on the left nostril, breathe in, fill your belly like a balloon, almost like you can’t take any more air in, and hold it at the top. Then Switch!
- Place your thumb back on the right nostril and repeat.
- Do this for one whole minute! No cheating!
Why This Works:
This is a breathing technique from the Pranayama yoga practice. It does wonders for your nervous system as it is both cooling and relaxing. Stress keeps us locked in the sympathetic nervous system, but this slow and relaxed breathing helps us get back to the parasympathetic nervous system - where we’re supposed to live our lives.
This will set up your self care routine quickie up for success, so don’t skimp on it. If it feels good, keep going for more than a minute.
Bonus Points: if you can be in a quiet space, or pop in your headset to tune into Spotify or YouTube and play sound therapy 528Hz music while breathing.
TL;DR? Watch this video by Adriene Mishler on How to do Alternate Nostril Breathing. If you’re in a hurry, start a 2:20’
#2 Write Five Things You’re Grateful for and WHY
This is where that handy notebook or journal comes in: a vital part of your mini self care routine is mindfulness. Being present. Appreciating what you have and why.
These five sentences shouldn’t take more than one to two minutes but should feel powerful enough in your newly-found calm state to uplift your mood. Phrase them in the “thank you form” for extra oomph! Like this:
- Thank you for my family, because they make me feel loved and supported even when they drive me crazy.
- Thank you for my healthy eyes, because I can see color and enjoy Netflix as much as my baby’s smile.
- Thank you for---- because---
You get the gist.
Why This Works:
Gratitude has been shown to improve physical health, uplift your mood almost instantly, improve self-esteem, lower stress, reduce aggression, and even add more years and satisfaction to your life. By saying “thank you for” instead of “I’m grateful for” your mind puts you in the mood and feeling of “receiving” a gift or favor - and that feels good.
Practice outside of this self care routine for more impact!
#3 Make Your Tea and Read!
This is where your self-care routine takes your liver and nervous system down from “overly worked mode” to “ahhh, that’s nice.” We’re going to help you reset your liver with turmeric powder, while your body and mind unwind with a few minutes of reading and sipping.
All you have to do is pour yourself a cup of turmeric tea, like our Organifi Gold, and sit down to drink and read three pages of something you like and it’s fun for you.
That’s it! Put your phone on airplane mode and let it be quiet for a few minutes. We like to do this at the end of the day so we can head off to dreamland in the best mood and wake up energized. However, feel free to try this self care routine it at any other time that suits you best.
Psst: It’s Ok if you take more than five minutes, but if not - five minutes will suffice.
Why This Works:
Reading something fun is just an easy way to unplug. Committing to three to five pages helps you relax and not worry that you’re “wasting time.” But, we bet you’re asking:
What is turmeric powder, and why is it part of this five-minute self care routine?
It’s an ancient Ayurvedic medicinal root that you’ve probably seen in curry or golden milk lattes. It’s anti-inflammatory, strengthens the immune system, increases the body’s antioxidant power, aids with digestion and may even clear acne and yellowing teeth.
Studies show that turmeric powder may support in the effects of chronic stress on BDNF. The Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) helps create new neurons and brain pathways, as well as preserve existing ones.
- Research shows that turmeric powder is a powerful antioxidant.
This happens through its active compound Curcumin, which is very beneficial but difficult to absorb; black pepper enhances its absorption by 2000%. The benefits of turmeric powder and black pepper are why maximum strength turmeric powder is the star of our Organifi Gold.
You can use the foundation of this self care routine to build up to a bigger or longer one that you sneak into your morning or evening routine. The important thing is to find something you like, that makes you feel good, and that you can stick with because it’s SO easy. A no-excuse approach to finding what feels good - and healthy! The benefits of turmeric just kick it up a notch and help you lower stress while caring for your precious liver.
Go ahead, try this mini self care routine and let us know how it went. We’d love to hear!