Self care day 28:Self care Wrap-up

Its has been 27 days of self care tips. 10,000 words written to help those in need. I think my hand is starting to cramp with all of the typing I have been doing. I kept my promise and posted every single day in the month of February. I was so worried I would miss a day and it kept me up nights writing late into the mornings sometimes but I made it!

I am going to list all the post here, in case you missed any or want to share all of them with friends who may need them. I do thank you all for joining me on this incredible journey this month. I hoped I help someone out there. I will also be adding a tab on the main page for easy access.

Please feel free to comment, like, subscribe if you found this helpful. If you would like, I do take donations on the link on the side with Paypal (or bellow for you mobile readers).

Thank you all.

#hugapony my friends!

Self care Day 1: Valet parking

Self care day 2: Candy day

Self care day 3: Self mail

Self care day 4: Finding your towel

Self care day 5:Cookie monster

Self care day 6:Picnic Baskets

Self care day 7:Netflix and you

Self care day 8: Blackout

Self care day 9:Writing people

Self care day 10:Sharing Happiness

Self care day 11:Appetizing Friends

Self care day 12:Flower power

Self care day 13:Nothing

Self care day 14:Crown Jewels

Self care day 15:Something New

Self care day 16:Peace of body

Self care day 17:Pillow talk

Self care day 18:Loving yourself

Self care day 19:Sweeter things

Self care day 20:Cleansing

Self care day 21:Bedhead

Self care day 22:Celebrity status

Self care day 23:Bubble bath

Self care day 24:Culture

Self care day 25:Zoology

Self care day 26:Treat your body

Self care day 27:Inner Plushie

Self care day 26:Treat your body

Keeping with the self care, there is always a time to “Treat yo self” Parks and Rec style. Body upkeep can be something that we all need. We have covered a lot of post like this in the past month and there is a few more things we can do to help.

Manicures, Pedicures, facials all have one goal. They are there to make you look better. Find a time and Groupon a place to do them (find someplace good). I am a guy and I will admit to having these things done to me. A facial is VERY relaxing (like a massage for the face) and helps those tired eyes. I have no shame in saying that it was an awesome thing to try. Having your nails trimmed and taken care of makes your full body image go up. One of the things I notice when I meet someone and shake their hands is if they have clean nails or not.

It is an easy thing to do for yourself or you can “treat yo self”.

Haircuts/styling is again a wonderful way to improve your mental body image. While there are many salons for women, there has been a rise in specialty barbers for men as well. I have one friend who goes to his barber and he gets a beer every time for his trim. Another friend swears by getting a straight razor shave to trim the beard and having a hot towel on the face.

Find ways and places that can help improve your mental image of yourself. Getting yourself in a place where you are happy with you is so uplifting. Sometimes we all need a pick me up in the physical looks department. Help yourself by little easy changes that can be done.

Self improve the body to help self improve the mind.

#hugapony my friends

It is always a pleasure bring you more day to day posts. I will continue to do so until the end of February. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

Self care day 23:Bubble bath

I remember bath time as a child. It was fun getting soapy water and making towers of bubbles that represented mountains or icebergs as my toys would have grand adventures throwing rings into fiery mountains or crashing ships into icebergs. It was a fantastic time of fun and enjoyment. Now, with my own kids, I get to provide them with the same fun and enjoyment. Barbies are in a gigantic size hair salon or ponies get to dash through mountains of snow on grand adventures throwing rings into fiery mountains (these are MY kids for sure).

There was revels to be had in bath time.

As a guy, baths are not something we often take. Showers, yes but baths are not that common place for us in American society. In this day and age, a full sized bathtub is hard to come by for either sex and is not in your average apartment. Showers remain supreme in the space as the quicker, easier option for getting ourselves clean. While we may enjoy the hot water steaming up the bathroom, I feel that we as a society are missing out on some very important self care.

I was in a lot of body pain a couple months ago and while shopping I saw a sale on Epson Salt. I had remembered that it could be used not only to clean you out internally, but also as a wonderful bath for tired feet or as a full body remedy. I picked some up and commented to my wife that it was something I wanted to try. She eyed me asking, “You? Take a bath?” I replied the affirmative and she eyed me some more but didn’t say out loud the loud judgment call of “girly” at me.

I got home and poured myself a bath in a bathtub half the size of what is necessary for a man my size and measured out the number of cups and I plunged in (so to speak). I was greeted by warm water that soothed aching muscles and sore joints.

Heaven was a bit closer to me in that time.

I implore you, if you have not tried a nice soothing bath since childhood, you should revisit this common luxury that is passed over. Time of peace and quiet would help the mind, the water help the body.

And with both of those together, they could help the soul.

Full body self care.

#hugapony my friends.

It is always a pleasure bring you more day to day posts. I will continue to do so until the end of February. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

Self care day 7:Netflix and you

Thank you for joining me on the grand undertaking. There is going to be a lot of work for me and  I hope to be able to keep up. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

I believe we live in a fantastic day and age of technology. I have a device in my pocket that allows me to contact anyone in the world. It also lets me fact check (or spell check in my case) when I need help. I can find the latest famous “Cat picture” on the web. I can also play games, do my taxes or my personal favorite, watch just about anything I want.

It makes it easy to end up watching an entire show in one sitting even if that sitting is 22 hours long….

I personally feel like that we all have that guilt that comes after watching an entire season of Stranger Things that makes us feel like we are horribly lazy people. We only meant to sit down while folding laundry or taking a quick break after work and see an episode. Instead, it turned into a “Holy crap its 3 am and I binged watched the entire season!” Why do we do this? What drives us to not move from our spot?

We want the escape.

We want the ability to just let go for a bit and relax doing something we enjoy.

So why do we feel guilty about doing something we enjoy?

We look at ourselves and say that we should be cooking or cleaning. We have bills to pay or someone we should be helping. We feel this guilt that society has put on us to go and do and act and be busy.

This is us. Humans doing. Do do do.

Is this how we are supposed to be?

Human doing instead of human being?

I say nay to all those who look down on taking time to do something you enjoy. Watching your favorite show is not a terrible thing. Some days we need to have the break. Some days we need the release of not having to do do do.

So plan a day. Pick one. Either after work or on a day off. Get some snacks, order a pizza, make a cup of hot tea or coffee. Plan nothing but to binge watch that season of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events start to finish. Kick your feet up, relax. Take a day and give your mind and body a rest. Take care of yourself. Tell everyone that you are busy and have plans. Taking care of yourself is your plan for the day.

Recommended dosage is to be taken as needed for self care.

#hugapony my friends

Self care day 5:Cookie monster

Thank you for joining me on the grand undertaking. There is going to be a lot of work for me and  I hope to be able to keep up. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

I am not a big sweets eater. I have been known to only eat a small amount of desserts most of the time. I cannot stand Oreo cookies (egad the horror!). But I cannot deny the small of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies as one of the best smells in the whole world.

Whether its memories of being at grandma’s house or a certain time of year like around Thanksgiving, the smell of cookies baking is amazing. Researchers have said smell is one of the most powerful memory triggers. The Fifth Sense tells us:

The sense of smell is closely linked with memory, probably more so than any of our other senses.  Those with full olfactory function may be able to think of smells that evoke particular memories; the scent of an orchard in blossom conjuring up recollections of a childhood picnic, for example.  This can often happen spontaneously, with a smell acting as a trigger in recalling a long-forgotten event or experience.  Marcel Proust, in his ‘Remembrance of all Things Past’, wrote that a bite of a madeleine vividly recalled childhood memories of his aunt giving him the very same cake before going to mass on a Sunday.

Now, while we know the smell of cookies very well, we also know the time, effort, and skill it requires to make that delicious cookie. I myself, while a small talented baker, sigh at the thought of making such a mess in the kitchen. So instead, find a place that delivers cookies.

My daughter watches more cooking shows than I knew existed and one of the coolest shows I saw was when they showed people who started a bakery and they delivered soft warm cookies to the doorstep. They showed how they slow bake them so when they arrive at your doorstep, the cookies are “fresh from the oven”.

I did a quick search of my local area (Dallas, Tx) and found MANY places that deliveries cookies. Think of being at work and having cookies delivered to you. I dare say that most of your coworkers will be jealous (order enough to share!).

The best thing I saw was a spot on Insomnia Cookies. They are a baking company that ships cookies around the US and the local bakeries were shown to deliver cookies until 3 AM!! The thought just made my mouth water.

Cookies can be fantastic. Valentines day is coming up. Why not “treat yourself”, aka Parks and Rec style, and get yourself some cookies. Put a smile on your own face.

And hey send me some cookies while you are at it. Regular chocolate chip. I’ll wait.

#hugapony my friends.

Self care day 4: Finding your towel.

Thank you for joining me on the grand undertaking. There is going to be a lot of work for me and  I hope to be able to keep up. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

Taking care of yourself involves so much. Mental and physical well-being should be considered crucial in keeping you healthy as a person. Sometimes, in my opinion, it can all come down to something as simple as one thing.

Do you know were your towel is at?

Towels are amazing. They provide warmth and comfort. They can be associated with going to the beach or swimming. They also make a great reference to Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

One Christmas, my dad decided to do a present to each member of the family. He did not tell anyone, even my mom much to her annoyance, what they were. These large light boxes were stuck under the tree, shaken daily as we tried and tried to guess what they were. Christmas morning arrived and we all dashed to see what these mystery gifts were.

They were very large, soft towels.

We sat around confused at such a gift when my father explained how we have had ragged old towels for awhile now and being something that we use (or should use) daily, why do we keep using them? Why not have a bit of luxury in having nice, big, soft towels.

With this simple message in mind, I bring it to everyone else.

Part of self-care for everyone is cleanliness. I know with some mental and physical disabilities, it can be very hard to get the energy to clean yourself. I wrote a post a few weeks back on a picture on Facebook that I got angry at for the tone of it. One of the items them mentioned was bathing. While I did not agree at all with the tone, I understood the message that cleanliness is an issue.

Why not motivate yourself with a new towel?

Here is an item that is used so often but how often do we think of buying a new one? When the old one rips? When it is so thread bare it takes another towel to finish the job? Do you have that nice towel the whole family fights over because it is so nice? Why not take a time and find a nice luxurious towel for you.

Knowing that you bought yourself a new, soft, warm, beautiful towel can be the thing to motivate you to take care of yourself.

It can all come down to just a towel.

#hugapony my friends

Self care day 2: Candy day.

Thank you for joining me on the grand undertaking. There is going to be a lot of work for me and  I hope to be able to keep up. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

We have all had bad days. The work meetings or doctor visits that we know and dread that come up. The day tax returns are due or days we know we are going to have to work late. That test coming up that we have studied so long and just want to get it over with. What can we do to help ourselves through those days?

Candy.

You may stop and say that this is a ridiculous notion of stopping by the store and impulse buying a candy bar. To this I say that you don’t make it an impulse. Go out and buy a Snickers bar or Skittles or any of your favorite treat and leave it on the pillow for when you get home. Preparation is one of the keys to this. When you prepare and know that you have that waiting for you, it removes the guilt we may feel. It also is something you can tell yourself that you having waiting for you.

When all you want to do is just want to collapse and rest in your bed, what is that waiting on your pillow? A treat! Some days you may forget all about it and it is a pleasant surprise. Others, it may be the one thing that gets you through the day.

I am reminded of a story the late comedian John Pinette would tell. He spoke of when he was told by his doctor that he need to lose weight due to help with his health problems, he would go to the gym, get on the machine of his choice and start to workout. While working out, he had a chant that he would use to get him through the workout. He said he would tell himself, “John, you get through this, when you get home, you can have raviolis and a nap.” He would chant this to himself over and over “Raviolis and a nap, raviolis and a nap.” This became his mantra.

Maybe all we need is a candy bar to get us through the day. Maybe all we need to tell ourselves is “I have a candy bar waiting for me on my pillow.”

Simple things to get us through the day. Ways to make us happier or feel better in stressful times.

Isn’t that what self care is all about?

#hugapony my friend

Self care Day 1: Valet parking.

Thank you for joining me on the grand undertaking. There is going to be a lot of work for me and  I hope to be able to keep up. Please make sure to comment, share and follow along as I share some simple things to better your life!

To kick off the month of February, the month of love, I decided to focus on self-care. I have always felt that self-care is important but have struggled to do so in my life. I am issuing a challenge to myself to do each day’s activity this year so I can experience them right along with you. I tried to make each item simple, cheap, and easy to do. I hope you enjoy them all.

My first one is 10 valet parking. I am not sure how many of you have had the opportunity to do it before but it is fantastic. My wife and I, during a cold Christmas season, were going to a large mall nearby to finish some shopping and catch a movie for a date night. Being the holidays, the parking lot was packed from the one side to the other. Cars circled the parking lot like vultures, waiting for that open spot. Several screaming matches were seen as I too circled the area. Stress was building, ruining a nice evening as a few select words threatened the evening.

I looked over near the entrance and saw valet parking available. I looked at my wife and commented that I should just have them deal with the car so we can enjoy our evening. She looked right back and said “Why not?” I had never used it before and I thought to myself “Hey $20-30 dollars would be worth the stress relief right now.” I pulled up to find it was not $20-30 but instead it was $8! I was overjoyed. I gave the keys to the gentleman, was given a tag, and we went onto our evening. Later that night, we came back outside to a very cold scene. People dashing to their car to escape the chill and walking seemingly miles away to the vehicles located at the end of the lot. I walked to the valet, handed my ticket to the man and soon the car was brought to us, warmed up and ready.

It was an amazing experience for the cost of a total of $13 dollars (I tipped $5). My wife and I talked about it on the way home. The relief of not having to stress out over parking was worth its weight in gold, the heated car and not having to carry bags was an added bonus! How many times have we dreaded the mall due to the hassle? How about going to a special dinner or event and finding the evening ruined due to being cut off from the space you clearly were waiting 5 minutes for and the other person clearly saw you but took the space anyways.

I am not going to lie. It felt so special to have someone bring my car to me. I felt like a movie star.

A simple thing to make life easier or to make you feel special. A simple way to show to yourself that you are special.

I hope you try it.

#hugapony my friends

 

Ikkikon 2017.

I will be at Ikkicon 2017 and I will be doing a panel on invisible disability on Saturday Dec 31st at 6 pm to 7 pm. Come join me as we talk about living with invisible disabilities and share in a safe space our experiences and ways to help each other. I will have a special prize for the first two people who come up to me in the panel and say “clumsy draconequus” will get a small prize!(Kudos for those who get the reference).

I cant wait to see you all!

Come out and hug a pony with me!

hug_life_shirt_by_tygerbug-d5aik4i.png

PS – Picture from http://tygerbug.deviantart.com/art/Hug-Life-Shirt-319992930

Happy Holidays

Winter has come and brought its dark skies and cold nights to us. In this time of joyous celebration and hot cocoa, Let us all take some time to pay attention to those around us who may need some help. From single mothers and divorced dads, to those who illness is worsened by the cold, to the quite children who don’t get swept up in all the bright festivities. Someone will be in your life that will need a little encouragement.

It amazes me that so many people can go through life and not realize what or who is around us. I watch as people ignore anything that does not pertain to them. Working retail makes this abundantly evident as people respond to your greetings with abrupt dismissal. We become so focused on what are doing, who do we need presents  for, how am I going to make all the parties that we tend to not see those of us who need help around us. In this spirit of giving and merry making, we miss those who are not able to enjoy the holidays.

I encourage all of us to go forth and find someone to help this holiday. It could be the single mother with 3 kids who just needs a night off. It could be the recently divorced dad who isn’t going to be able to spend time with his kids for the first time. It could be the person with the illness who cant make it to that party they always used to enjoy. Chances are I have described someone you know. You are thinking of them right now.

Act on that.

Stop doing things.

Start on being this holiday.

#hugapony

PS I have not had much time to write and for that I apologize. I have my next few posts planned to carry me into the new year. Thank you all who read this blog. As a reward, a small comic i found that speaks to me in so many ways.

15541545_1727515183941193_4157366364106917405_n