77 ways to practice radical self-love
In celebration of National Recovery Month the following suggestions were lovingly shared by the SHE RECOVERS Foundation Community and curated just for you. Here is what other recovering women had to say about loving themselves, radically!
1. Trauma-informed Yoga like SHE RECOVERS Yoga with Taryn Strong. I love that it is designed for beginners and I can participate in any way that feels comfortable for me. It feels safe in the space for me to have emotions come up. “This too shall flow-through” as Taryn would say!
2. Daily journaling has been a game-changer to get rid of the chaos in my brain. I feel it is an act of radical self-love to make this practice non-negotiable and just as important to my daily hygiene as brushing my teeth.
3. Every morning I wake up early before anyone in my house and enjoy the quiet and stillness. I have my coffee, diffuse my favorite oils, read some inspirational literature, journal, meditate and do yoga with Tayrn (pick out from her recordings which yoga practice resonates with me that morning). This helps me direct how I show up for my days with my kids, husband and job.
4. Being of service as a commitment to show up for myself and others. I feel more present when I am doing something [ like being of service ] with integrity.
5. Moving stuck energy in my system and allowing my body to shake off the stickies with Payton Kennedy & SHE RECOVERS Dance. Friday sober dance parties are SO FUN.
6. Spending time in nature and anything nature based really – especially in or around bodies of water. I find it centering. I am able to hear myself think in nature.
7. Essential oils for recovery. Frankincense, lavender, and peppermint are my go-tos. I have learned and experienced so much about the power of essential oils for my mental and emotional well being through SHE RECOVERS Founder, Community Herbalist & Aromatherapist Taryn Strong.
8. Listening to music… because recovery rocks! I really love the SHE RECOVERS Community Playlist. There are over 10 hours of recovery anthems within this playlist. I listen to it anytime I need to hear some inspiration or a reminder to get out of my head and into my body.
9. Somatic Therapy has helped me immensely. As a trauma survivor, I never knew [ before somatic therapy ] that our bodies store trauma in our nervous system. I felt really shut down and disconnected from myself before starting Somatic Therapy. It helped me get connected with myself, my feelings, and my needs again.
10. Nightly rituals like self-guided facial acupressure. I think we forget how much slowing down to spend time moisturizing and taking care of the “little things” are radical acts of self-love in a society that lives fast.
11. Listening and learning to trust trusting my own inner voice and knowing.
12. I enjoy journalling appreciations and gratitudes nightly so I end my day on a grateful, happy note and listen to a meditation while I fall asleep.These are my little nuggets of care that I do every day to keep my mind, body and spirit aligned and healthy.
13. Art Therapy and creating art in many forms. I have learned to let my story unfold through the process of art, not the completion. As a recovering perfectionist, I find this approach very freeing.
14. Studying holistic wellness modalities (trauma-informed yoga, nutrition, functional medicine, spiritual texts.) When I know better I get to know myself better too.
15. Getting lots of fresh air and spending time digging in the dirt. Having my hands in the dirt feels radical and helps me feel more connected to myself and the earth.
16. Rest. Like meditation, full-blown naps, or carving time out for guilt-free downtime. I feel like setting time for intentional rest in our world, is one of the most radically loving acts one can do.
17. Long walks. Walking helps me slow down and be present while still moving my body. It really helps my mood.
18. During the day while I work from home, I diffuse oils, open the windows for sunlight to come in and play my favorite music lightly in the background while I work. This helps me keep my work container as peaceful and calming as possible.
19. Listening to recovery podcasts like the SHE RECOVERS Podcast.
20. Practicing a Sacred Pause — something I learned at a SHE RECOVERS retreat. This has been the tool that has allowed me the spacious grace to observe my old patterns and to practice implementing more skillful responses.
21. Pulling a tarot, oracle, or affirmation card every morning. Spiritual guidance is helpful for me to simplify and stay open throughout the day.
22. Keep an art journal.
23. Connecting with friends with whom I can have private conversations. Having people I can share my authentic self helpe me learn to love myself radically too.
24. Organizing my week according to my priorities and values to make sure I have time for what matters and to feel satisfied.
25. Scheduling in support so I can move out of mom mode. I take 30 minutes where my parents have the baby and I take the time to shower, clean up my area, and relax for just a little.
26. Making batches of turmeric elixir. The process, the taste, the benefits are all so yummy!
27. Making my way through the SHE RECOVERS Professional training. Taking this program feels like a radical act of self-love as a professional and woman in recovery.
28. Walking my dogs. They are a great reminder of asking for what you need, the benefits of regular movement and play, the importance of sleep, and the healing power of (unconditional) radical self-love.
29. Breathe work like box breathing or guided breath meditation.
30. Drinking lots of water! Our bodies are made up of something like 60% water so making sure I am drinking enough of it surely helps me feel more like myself!
31. Swimming or floating in the lake or ocean. The support of the water helps me relax and it is so cleansing.
32. Floating in a float tank. Have had profound insights while floating!
33. Practicing Tara Brach’s RAIN technique. Helps me find clarity within myself and brings me back to center.
34. Reading recovery memoirs. I can see myself in the stories shared by other recovering women and it reminds me of my own potential and possibilities for healing.
36. I like to connect with myself through my sense. I will go for a walk, choosing a sense to explore my environment with. I pay special attention also to my breath. Every breath out an offering, every breath in a receiving. This practice of connecting with nature helps me love myself and the world around me more radically.
37. Meditation after lunch to rest, regroup, and relieve stress.
38. Flow writing like the morning pages approach created by Julia Cameron, Author of ‘The Artists Way’. It has helped me rediscover who I am in recovery.
39. Work with a SHE RECOVERS Recovery Coach! My coach helped me realize my own potential and gain the confidence I needed to pursue my passions and make my dreams a reality.
40. Work with a trauma-informed or EMDR therapist.
42. Vocal toning and sound healing tools like binaural beats. I like the sounds and tones that help calm me down and reduce anxiety, but they can be used for all sorts of desired states.
43. Mindful eating and removing moral judgements from food. I am in recovery from orthorexia and by practicing mindfulness around my eating I am able to notice cue’s from my body vs. fixating on “eating perfectly.” It helps slow me down and my food seems to taste better too.
44. Take an Epsom salt bath.
45. I often do a H.A.L.T (Hungry, angry, lonely, tired) inventory before reacting to something or if I need to figure out whether something is an issue in the first place. By keeping myself hydrated, making sure I have eaten, am rested, have spoken with a trusted person, and gotten fresh air / exercise I feel much more centered and prepared to respond to what shows up in my daily life.
46. I practice daily recovery rituals like reading my SHE RECOVERS Everyday meditation book written by SHE RECOVERS Founder Dr. Dawn Nickel when I first wake up and making my bed. These are simple things that I associate now with my recovery so when I do them, I am reminded of my purpose.
47. Having a welcoming and supportive community that gives me the space to feel safe in my own skin and share my story without judgment. Being a part of SHE RECOVERS gives my nervous system the chance to take a break which allows me to get in touch with my feelings, deeper needs, and what I might need to let go of.
48. Spending time in an infrared sauna is so helpful for my body, mind, and spirit. It gives me the space to be with myself while raising my heart rate and releasing stuck energy from my body. I feel so rejuvenated after a session.
49. Following a budget. Sometimes the most radical acts of self-love are the ones I really don’t feel like doing but make a big impact overall on my life!
50. Getting enough sleep. I feel so off and disconnected from myself when I don’t. So grateful for Yoga Nidra – it puts me right to sleep.
51. Celebrating recovery milestones through tattoos! Having a permanent reminder of where I came from and what my purpose is has prevented me from relapsing on many occasions.
52. Scheduling unapologetic alone time or taking my lunch break early to tune in to a SHE RECOVERS #MentalHealthMonday Session. Prioritizing my recovery feels like radical self-love for sure.
53. Early morning rituals. It doesn’t look exactly the same every morning, and the amount of time might vary, but every morning I meditate in some form; I read and I aim to journal a few pages. Some mornings I can only do a fraction of it, but whatever I can do, I do. It is my time to connect and reflect inward, to listen for what I need to know and understand and to really ground myself for the day.
54. The S.O.B.E.R mindfulness tool. It stands for stop-breathe-obeserve-expand-respond. Gets me to check in with myself and I am able to respond in a more mindful way to others.
55. Gratitude lists. I always can find something, even the littlest thing, to be grateful for. It doesn’t solve my problems or cover up my feelings but helps me to feel hopeful and worthy.
56. Attending a SHE RECOVERS Together Zoom Gathering. Sometimes I just need to share what is on my heart or I hear just the right thing from someone else. These gatherings are a saving grace for me right now.
57. Watching the SHE RECOVERS Recovery Education series. These recovery-focused educational sessions are just what I need to deepen my recovery. I learn something new about myself every time.
58. Using the My Recovery Plan workbook. This framework is helping me better understand myself and what I need on a regular basis to thrive in recovery.
59. Mine is alone time! Especially since becoming a mom. Need time to be alone with my thoughts, recharge and take care of me.
60. My radical self-love comes through meditation. I’m not consistent, but I do find that sitting in peace fills my cup like nothing else.
61. Spending time in what I call the grove of matriarchs. They are these incredible trees near my home whose roots are deep and branches are tall and provide a sense of grounding, serenity and wisdom whenever I need to be reminded of the radical opportunity it is to simply be alive in this moment.
62. Embracing body & food neutrality through the SHE RECOVERS philosophy. These resources, viewpoints, stories, and providers have all changed the way I live and lead.
63. As a recovering orthorexic, treating myself to food I actually enjoy has been one of the most radical acts of self-love I have ever done. Eating without guilt and living in my body without shame have both been equally liberating.
64. My favorite way to practice radical self-love is contemplative journaling. I usually begin with a short meditation setting an intention to connect with my Divine Inner Self to seek revelation or clarity. Then I begin to write, and after a paragraph or two, a topic, issue, or circumstance wells from within and my hand begins to capture my thoughts. I’m always amazed at what I discover about myself.
65. Creativity allows me to stay deeply connected with myself. Painting, design, photography, gardening, pottery, decorating, baking – it really doesn’t matter as long as it feels creative. I love getting lost in the process – allowing my brain to open up to possibility, to reconnect with emotion and to provide the space to play, explore, reflect and recharge.
66. I recently learned about body grief from Jayne Mattingly during her SHE RECOVERS recovery education session. As a disabled woman, it feels radically loving to allow myself to feel grief around what my body can’t do, as well as celebrate who I am as a person and what I stand for. Jayne taught me the concept of embracing all of who I am – and I am loving it!
67. Reparenting myself. I learned this concept from SHE RECOVERS Coach Cybele. Growing up in a dysfunctional home left me feeling unprepared for navigating emotions and challenges in my adult life. Reparenting has allowed me to give to myself now what I didn’t get in my childhood. That is radical self-love.
68. Healing intergenerational trauma through the power and wisdom of plant spirits in essential oils / herbs / forests. Through moving my body – everyday. Through daily ritual and monthly ceremonies working with the phases of the moon. Taking a sacred pause and dropping into ‘Tiny Taryn’ and asking what SHE needs. To me, taking care of little me is radical self-love in action. – Taryn Strong, SHE RECOVERS Founder
69. My mom taught me that a cup of tea helps all of the things. At least once a day I stop what I am doing, boil water, steep a nice black or green tea in a fancy bone china cup then sit down and sip and breathe. Heaven. – Dr.Dawn Nickel, SHE RECOVERS Founder
70. My first step is embodied movement! A one-song dance-party, 15 minutes of yoga, a run or jumping on rebounder with my earbuds. Then it’s getting out into nature and engaging all of my senses in that experience. My other tools include breath work, meditation, reading, journaling and writing poetry, music therapy (which for me is listening and singing along to music I love), essential oils and self-care such dry-brushing and self-massage with oils. Regular connection and sharing with the community is also something that fully supports my recovery journey. – Payton Kennedy, Events & SHE RECOVERS Dance
71. Pivoting, doing the work, and remaining flexible but driven as I continue to walk in the direction of my dreams. Holding space in the SHE RECOVERS Black, Indigenous, & Women of Color Support Group & Gathering. Using my voice as an advocate. Being connected to my community and being of service – it all helps me create a deeper connection with myself and my soul. – Shari Hampton, Trusted Advisor – Healing Racism in Recovery
72. Sometimes, self-love for me is about spending time and talking with animals. There is something so heartening about it, there is nothing that I tell them that they can’t hold. I recommend everyone bury their face into a fuzzy tummy from time to time. . – Suzie Spitfyre, Marketing & Communications
73. Spending time in the garden. Putting my hands in the soil. Observing patterns and relationships in nature as a reflection of my own life and community. – Liana Kennedy, Certifications
74. Honoring and recognizing the cycle of the seasons, the moon, and my own body as teachers through the lens of earth-based spirituality. This serves a magickal and simple compass in my life. I have come to learn that by reclaiming myself and the world around me as sacred my spiritual / emotional / physical the love I have for myself is stronger than ever. It helps me find the magick in the mundane and reminds me that even the smallest things are sacred and important. Being a co-creator and in awe of my life has saved my life. – Lisa Wall, Community Care & Mission Programs
75. One of the biggest radical self-care tools I have learned on this journey, is that Movement=Medicine. No matter where I am, moving my body connects my mind, body and spirit and brings me back to the present moment. There are not many things I can’t solve after a quick walk, ride, dance or yoga flow. – Sara Nelson, Development
76. Listening to audiobooks. They help me stay focused and inspired and I love to listen to them while I enjoy being out in the neighbourhood or working out! – Jeff Barrett, Video & Podcast Editor
77. I’ve experienced massive emotional shifts recently listening to meditations enriched with theta soundwaves and binaural beats. – Carrie Potter, Designer
ABOUT RECOVERY MONTH
Each September, Recovery Month works to promote and support new evidence-based treatment and recovery practices, the emergence of a strong and proud recovery community, and the dedication of service providers and community members across the nation who make recovery in all its forms possible. Visit the Recovery Month website to celebrate and learn more about this national movement.
This community-curated list is not intended to be a replacement for treatment, psychiatric, or medical care. None of the content within this list is designed to prevent, cure, or treat any condition. You are responsible for your own physical, mental and emotional well-being, decisions, choices, actions, and results. The written submissions contained in this blog are of the opinion of the contributors alone. Visit our Terms & Conditions page to learn more.
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