It's easy to get overstimulated with too much screen time and productivity. The demands of daily life can leave you anxious and not feeling like yourself. Do this, do that. Be here, be there. Be more confident and worry less about what others think.
Even though we are more connected than ever, you can still be in a crowded room and feel alone and restless.
But on the flip side of too much of (well, everything) hopefully being in touch here, on this blog, has given you tools and mindset shifts you've been able to integrate into your life. Let's ADD IN the good stuff.
Another wonderful grounding practice I'd love to share with you can happen right in your home, for a low cost, and doesn't take a long time: self-massage with oil. Easily one of my favorite habits I've picked up in the last three years.
In the heart of fall, the increasing winds, cooler temperatures, dryer air, uncertain and rough nature (think of a leaf that has fallen from a tree) having a predictable schedule and routine is key for mental stability and whole body connectivity. To balance, bring in the opposite qualities like heavy, spreading, dense, moisture, warm, stable, and abundance. That's oil!
In the past, my own pattern of increased anxiety (sometimes depression) would happen during the transition from fall to winter. I know this may sound silly and too good to be true, but applying carrier oils to my entire body have 100% helped me feel more in my body and less in my head when my thoughts are spinning out.
Check out the robust benefits of applying oil to the whole body
Deep sleep - Less waking up in the middle of the night
Relieves fatigue from responsibilities - minimizing worry
Decreases craving snacks and sugary foods - your body absorbs that fat it needs from the oil
Brightens awareness and energy - stabilizing your mood
Muffles the mental chatter - leaving more room for relaxation
I know what you must be thinking, "Give myself a massage?" "Won't the oil get everywhere?" Let me break down the technique and tools you'll need.
To get started, use a carrier oil like sesame, jojoba, sunflower, or almond oil and leave it in your bathroom. These oils are different than essential oils. Caution: do not use essential oils directly on your skin. They are concentrated and can burn you.
Before your shower, on dry skin, sit on a towel and begin to apply as much or little to each part of the body. Take your time. Do long sweeping motions over long bones and muscles, and small, circular motions over joints, hands, feet, and head. Apply light pressure around your organs.
Let the oil absorb for 5 minutes (or more). At this point it's nice to have a candle lit or soft music playing to unwind. This time of year, your body may be able to absorb a lot of oil (a teaspoon or more per limb) so go light and build the oil until it doesn't quickly soak up.
Once you've oiled your whole body and allowed it to absorb in, you'll still be oily, so be careful getting in and out of the shower or bath. Take a shower as normal but refrain from using any body soap or scrub. Simply rinse your body with warm (not super hot) water, but wash your hair and other fuzzy parts as normal.
Pat dry, or better yet, air dry, lightly massaging in the rest of the oil. Use a designated "oil towel" when drying. Change into clothes you don't mind getting a little oil on. I personally use a lot of oil per shower (2-3x per week) and haven't ruined any clothes yet.
Now comes the best part. Feel how the oil has penetrated way deeper than any lotion could ever go. Not only are you hydrated to the core, but you have successfully relaxed your nervous system. Get ready for a wonderful full nights sleep and enjoy the "weighted blanket" feeling.