Self: a person's essential being that distinguishes them from others
Care: the provision of what is necessary for the health, welfare, maintenance, and protection of someone or something
Self care is a big buzz words these days. Often taken to be only bubble baths, facemasks and a lofty excuse to buy fancy things, the word doesn't always carry much weight. For some it can be all of those things, but the origins of self care stem from rituals and traditions dating back centuries. At its core, self care is an essential part of taking pride in maintaining your health, wellbeing and happiness.
From Netflix binges and bedtime books to Sunday baths, some self care routines are innately lonely, and can offer valuable me-time. We think it’s necessary to unwind with others too, and as it turns out, much of the world agrees with us.
In different cultures, self care is practiced in many different ways, and more often than not practiced in groups. In Hungary the people rely on gyógyfürdő, or hot baths to relax from daily life. The waters, saturated in minerals, have been shown to lower your heart rate, ease joint pain and lower blood pressure.
Much like here in the UK, coffee is an integral part of Swedish culture. However, while we are gulping down cups of coffee in need of our next caffeine fix, in Sweden they take breaks called ‘Fika’. It’s a tradition where everyone from interns to bosses, stop twice usually around 9am and 4pm, to drink coffee and catch up.
In many South Asian Countries, such as India, Nepal and Pakistan, oils are used as therapy. A beauty regime that has lasted centuries, mothers, daughters, aunties, grandmothers and friends, congregate to massage oil into each others hair. A normal part of their wellness routine, they use coconut, mustard, or Ayurvedic Oils that are weaved through their hair. It not only rejuvenates their hair, but their understanding of each other. It’s a ritual of self care together. It also becomes a custom of selflessness; helping someone else in their own self care.
Here at Araminta Marketing, we love our self care routines. From going to lunchtime Yin Yoga class to sharing a (few) bottles of wine, we know what it means to share collective self care routines. Studies have shown that this ‘collective restoration’ can be beneficial to your mental health, decreasing rates of depression.
So why not share a kind coffee with someone, take a friend for an autumn walk, or even bring a cake to your local book club. Let’s recharge and reconnect together.