If there's anything we've learned from 2020, it's that self-care isn't just a buzz word; it's a necessary aspect of living for mental, physical, and emotional wellness, especially during tough times. This year also taught us the importance of having a self-care practice that doesn't require leaving home, as many of our go-to self-care activities, like massages, facials, and even going to the gym became inaccessible among COVID lockdowns and stay-at-home orders.
As we look to a new year which nobody knows what it will bring, it's important to make sure our self-care arsenal is strong. While some forms of self-care require nothing but a clear mind and deep, conscious breathing, for those who like their self-care with a strong side of pampering and introspection, we recommend these items.
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Angela Caglia Skincare Rose Quartz Self-Love Eye Mask
The name says it all when it comes to this eye mask made of rose quartz which promotes feelings of love and well-being. The multi-use mask can be used in meditation to promote relaxation while the coolness and heaviness of the crystal may also help relieve sinus issues, close pores, and reduce the appearance of fine lines, dark circles, and puffiness.
HUM Nutrition Big Chill Supplement
Reduce the signs of stress from the inside out with these "chill pills". Formulated with rhodiola root extract, these pills help calm your mind while reducing the physical signs of stress on your skin.
Ariana Ost Sound Crystal Kit
Tap into the power of sonic rituals with this kit featuring a BioSonics tuning fork and dish with a hand-wrapped crystal attached.
The peace of mind that comes with having a clean home has taken on a whole new meaning since the onset of the pandemic. This wand eliminates the need for harsh chemical-containing sprays and cleansers by naturally eliminating germs that cause colds, infections, asthma and allergic reactions by simply holding the wand approximately 1-2 inches from the surface of the item you want to sanitize and gradually move it over the area.
Homedics Relax & Unwind Wellness Kit
Reap the benefits of sound and aroma therapy with this wellness kit. It features a SoundSpa® Mini to help you decompress to the sounds of white noise, a summer night, ocean waves, and rain along with a Travel Eye Mask with Vibration Massage and Built-in Headphones. Top off the experience with the Ellia Dream Away Essential Oil Roll-On for ultimate relaxation.
Mindfulness Card Packs
Mindful thinking takes practice and sometimes we need prompts. This pack of cards has more than 50 exercises to help users go deeper in five areas of mindfulness: Rest & Balance, Insight & Awareness, Curiosity & Joy, and Kindness.
Raw Crystal Ring + Earring Set
Many people who believe in the cleansing power of crystals like to wear their gems on their body. This earring and ring set from Pura Vida makes that easy to do. Raw Clear Quartz, aka the "Master Healer", which is known for its ability to balance and absorb energy, is the mineral used in this jewelry.
The Good Patch Hemp-Infused Hangover Patch
We've all made the mistake of having a few sips too many, but none of us has the luxury of losing a whole day behind it. Get on the mend sooner rather than later with this hemp-infused patch that helps replenish essential nutrients lost from a night of too much drinking.
Nighttime Self-Care Kit
Self-care is skincare and this set makes it easy to refresh skin overnight. The four-piece kit includes the Magic Gel-to-Milk Cleanser, 3-in-1 Detox Mud Mask, Deep Hydration Face Cream, and Beauty Sleep Resurfacing Serum.
Neo Tarot: A Fresh Approach to Self-Care, Healing & Empowerment
If you're into Tarot, take your practice to the next level with this guidebook that mixes explanations of the symbolism of the 78-card deck with practical wisdom and actionable exercises to increase self-love.
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Featured image by Shutterstock
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How Content Creators Hey Fran Hey And Shameless Maya Embraced The Pivot
This article is in partnership with Meta Elevate.
If you’ve been on the internet at all within the past decade, chances are the names Hey Fran Hey and Shameless Maya (aka Maya Washington) have come across your screen. These content creators have touched every platform on the web, spreading joy to help women everywhere live their best lives. From Fran’s healing natural remedies to Maya’s words of wisdom, both of these content creators have built a loyal following by sharing honest, useful, and vulnerable content. But in search of a life that lends to more creativity, freedom, and space, these digital mavens have moved from their bustling big cities (New York City and Los Angeles respectively) to more remote locations, taking their popular digital brands with them.
Content Creators Hey Fran Hey and Maya Washington Talk "Embracing The Pivot"www.youtube.com
In partnership with Meta Elevate — an online learning platform that provides Black, Hispanic, and Latinx-owned businesses access to 1:1 mentoring, digital skills training, and community — xoNecole teamed up with Franscheska Medina and Maya Washington on IG live recently for a candid conversation about how they’ve embraced the pivot by changing their surroundings to ultimately bring out the best in themselves and their work. Fran, a New York City native, moved from the Big Apple to Portland, Oregon a year ago. Feeling overstimulated by the hustle and bustle of city life, Fran headed to the Pacific Northwest in search of a more easeful life.
Her cross-country move is the backdrop for her new campaign with Meta Elevate— a perfectly-timed commercial that shows how you can level up from wherever you land with the support of free resources like Meta Elevate. Similarly, Maya packed up her life in Los Angeles and moved to Sweden, where she now resides with her husband and adorable daughter. Maya’s life is much more rural and farm-like than it had been in California, but she is thriving in this peaceful new setting while finding her groove as a new mom.
While Maya is steadily building and growing her digital brand as a self-proclaimed “mom coming out of early retirement,” Fran is redefining her own professional grind. “It’s been a year since I moved from New York City to Portland, Oregon,” says Fran. “I think the season I’m in is figuring out how to stay successful while also slowing down.” A slower-paced life has unlocked so many creative possibilities and opportunities for these ladies, and our conversation with them is a well-needed reminder that your success is not tied to your location…especially with the internet at your fingertips. Tapping into a community like Meta Elevate can help Black, Hispanic, and Latinx entrepreneurs and content creators stay connected to like minds and educated on new digital skills and tools that can help scale their businesses.
During a beautiful moment in the conversation, Fran gives Maya her flowers for being an innovator in the digital space. Back when “influencing” was in its infancy and creators were just trying to find their way, Fran says Maya was way ahead of her time. “I give Maya credit for being one of the pioneers in the digital space,” Fran said. “Maya is a one-person machine, and I always tell her she really changed the game on what ads, campaigns, and videos, in general, should look like.”
When asked what advice she’d give content creators, Maya says the key is having faith even when you don’t see the results just yet. “It’s so easy to look at what is, despite you pouring your heart into this thing that may not be giving you the returns that you thought,” she says. “Still operate from a place of love and authenticity. Have faith and do the work. A lot of people are positive thinkers, but that’s the thinking part. You also have to put your faith into work and do the work.”
Fran ultimately encourages content creators and budding entrepreneurs to take full advantage of Meta Elevate’s vast offerings to educate themselves on how to build and grow their businesses online. “It took me ten years to get to the point where I’m making ads at this level,” she says. “I didn’t have those resources in 2010. I love the partnership with Meta Elevate because they’re providing these resources for free. I just think of the people that wouldn’t be able to afford that education and information otherwise. So to amplify a company like this just feels right.”
Watch the full conversation with the link above, and join the Meta Elevate community to connect with fellow businesses and creatives that are #OnTheRiseTogether.
Featured image courtesy of Shameless Maya and Hey Fran Hey
This Content Creator Gets Candid About Touch Starvation In Emotional Video
Recently, a young content creator named Mayte Lisbeth posted an emotional video about experiencing touch starvation. She expressed that she feels she is dying from touch starvation and does not receive hugs. Additionally, if she were to receive a hug, she would crumble. The nearly three-minute video continued as Lisbeth breaks down her need for touch. Healthline says touch starvation or deprivation “occurs when a person experiences little to no touch from other living things.”
According to research posted in the National Library of Medicine, “touch is a powerful tool for communicating positive emotions.” Furthermore, other studies emphasize the importance of social touch. When an individual lacks touch, they can experience the following: depression, anxiety, stress, relationship dissatisfaction, difficulty sleeping, and detachment. Moreover, people who do not enjoy being touched can also experience deprivation due to occasionally longing for a hug or handshake.
Lisbeth’s video was triggering because touch starvation is something I experienced in the past. The first time I experienced this was when I was 17 years old after moving across the country to a state where I had no family. It happened again during the pandemic. I remember going into the pandemic optimistic as I really could be.
It worked for the first several months but quickly spiraled into some of my most challenging times, emotionally and mentally. That feeling was amplified when there was no one I truly loved to hug me. Something about a long embrace from a loved one assured me that no matter how dark my world was at the time, there was a light at the end of my darkness. Being away from my support system was rough during that time of uncertainty.
I was not fully aware of what touch starvation was at the time, but I knew I longed for touch. It was not until I was visiting my best friend and randomly asking for a hug that I remember having an immense sense of anxiety and sadness.
The content creator stated in her video that the solution is more complex than scheduling a hair appointment and receiving services. The form of touch was not suitable because she had no ties to these people. It is more about receiving affection, which can come in touch from someone who cares about her, not specifically a romantic touch.
Its been five years of touch starvation. I’ll probably have some more years of it. I’m not handling this well.
First, I commend Lisbeth for her vulnerability and courage to speak on a subject many sometimes do not know about or even acknowledge. She even commented that her family was not big huggers, which did not help her touch starvation. She could count how many times she hugged her parents when she saw them last. Unfortunately, a lot of the time, this is the norm for many families. “I do not know how to heal in a community; I only heal alone,” Lisbeth tearfully explained in a follow-up video. People instantly flooded her social media pages with support and suggested solutions, including breathwork, touch work, and even hiring a professional cuddler.
Sadly, many suffer from touch starvation and do not have family or a tribe to contact. If that is your current situation, here are some exercises that copy touch sensation when experiencing touch starvation.
- Blankets – Wrapping yourself up in a blanket can provide comfort. Another option is a weighted blanket. A weighted blanket mimics receiving a hug, which can provide a sense of calm for an individual.
- Self-Touch Breathwork – The counselors at Twinpowerment, LLC taught us a five-step self-holding technique that could help remedy touch starvation.
- Body Pillows (or pillows) – Cuddling up to a body pillow can mimic cuddling and allow comfort during sleep.
- Cuddle Therapy – Like the name states, you can pay a professional to cuddle with. The Institute of Counseling in Nigeria explains that “Cuddle therapy fills a niche that is complementary to traditional talk therapy.” With traditional therapy, a mental health professional cannot touch their clients.
- Companion Animal – Dogs and cats make excellent companion animals. The endless number of cuddles and “kisses” they provide can offer comfort during hard times.
Even though traditional therapists cannot provide touch to their clients, they are a great option if your symptoms from touch starvation increase.
Since then, Lisbeth has posted videos explaining remedies she has tried or is willing to try. Some days are better than others, but she keeps moving forward. I pray she finds peace during these times.
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Feature image by People Images/ Getty Images