Ladies, have you ever noticed that anytime we break up with an ex, we cleanse our spaces and bodies – mentally and physically?
First, we remove the things that remind us of them because there is no need to cling to a toxic or unnecessary past. I’m not sure about you, but something about getting rid of clutter that weighed me down is so refreshing; I rebuke all negative energy in my personal space. Next, we cleanse ourselves by taking a natural, detoxifying bath or journal to release those emotions safely and effectively. However, what do you do when it comes to spiritually detoxing yourself? Can you recognize when it is time for something like that?
Detoxes concentrate on drawing out bad toxins and energies and realigning us with our purpose. Usually, when my energy is low, or I experience constant uneasiness, I know I need to take steps to detox spiritually. Luckily, I remembered a Reiki healer who worked with a close friend years ago; therefore, I started there.
I checked in with Reiki Practitioner Tamara Angela (@loveandfaerymagic) for her top ten recommendations on how to spiritually detox. I appreciate Tamara’s advice because she uses Reiki as “maintenance, not crisis [management],” thus, helping me realize I can prevent “spiritual clutter” from progressing.
Reiki practitioner Tamara Angela
Photo courtesy of Tamara Angela
According to Tamara, "Reiki is a Japanese healing art. It [Reiki] comes with the understanding that we are all energy. And the way I describe it is Reiki covers you like your grandma’s prayer.” And we all know how vital our grandmother’s (or elders’) prayers are, especially growing up.
Ways To Spiritually Detox
Tamara explained that her nine steps all work together and detoxify your spirit and help you maintain the work you put into cleansing your spirit. We apply many of these steps to our daily routine, not realizing how crucial they are for our spiritual health. Each step ties into the other, and all are necessary.
When you do a spiritual detox it's important to remember, it’s a lifestyle. Start slowly to create the level of peace you want and build the stability you need. Tamara shares, “You can do all nine steps and still experience chaos. That is why it is important to have a baseline, a level of peace,” Tamara says. “You have to create a baseline of stability that you can revert back to. ‘I am used to this level of peace.’ Someone came along to disturb it, and now I have to fix it. Now, I can come back to these [steps] and remove that energy and know how to properly.”
1. Turn off your phone notifications and alerts.
Those notifications keep you tethered to constantly looking out for things (i.e. a text from that one person you should have kept blocked), thus, making it harder to calm your spirits. “Instead, choose a time in the day when you’re checking notifications,” Tamara recommended.
2. Get proper rest.
We experience different levels of sleep, and getting proper rest allows your body to reset. Raise your hand if your off day consists of running multiple errands. Often, we do not rest on our off days; “something” comes up. That “something” can be as simple as your favorite reality show.
Feel seen yet? I surely did. Sitting down and binge-watching a TV show does not allow your mind to rest effectively. For proper rest, Tamara suggested that classical and jazz music or white noise is okay, but nothing with lyrics.
3. Clear and calm your nervous system
When you are constantly experiencing things, sometimes you need to calm your mind down. For example, when something goes wrong with the Wi-Fi, we reset the modem. We should do the same when it comes to our bodies. Unfortunately, we tend to not think like that regarding our body and nervous system. “We are in a constant sensory experience," Tamara explained.
"You have six senses. That is how you experience the world. So, when you are constantly experiencing things, sometimes you need to calm down. Sometimes you need to remove something. Sometimes you need to be aware of how much you have taken in or have the capacity to take in.”
According to Apollo Neuro, an overactive sympathetic nervous system can cause issues like muscle tension, jitters, insomnia, etc. It can also lead to hyper-vigilance, the tendency to detect danger, even in its absence. By contrast, excessive tiredness, depression, and an overactive gag reflex can signal parasympathetic dominance. Fortunately, steps eight and nine emphasize easing an overactive nervous system.
4. Enjoy the company of good friends with laughter
“Laughter is a way to express emotion; it’s a great release. You are not in an inadequate space when you’re there [with friends].” As we know, laughter is good for the soul; it releases endorphins and helps you release things.
5. Purge your living space/get rid of clutter
Also known as “spring cleaning.” Constant mess or clutter is draining, and cleaning removes that negative energy. A great example Tamara uses is opening a window as it “can let out negative, stagnant energy. Many people do not realize that this practice is hoodoo-based.”
Completely unplug or pick a day or time, and unplug. One way to do this is by turning off your phone. You cannot scroll through social media, talk on the phone, etc. Tamara recommended starting with 15 minutes and progressing from there.
7. Set boundaries
My personal favorite as I’ve gotten older. From a former people-pleaser, this is not an easy task. A lot of the pleasing we wrap ourselves up in is one of the main reasons we are spiritually drained. Setting boundaries is healthy; do things are your terms.
8. Do some Reiki
“Reiki energy balancing allows you to center yourself and clear that [negative] energy,” Tamara said. She further explained that it's like a church mother “laying hands on you.” Reiki is an energy healing technique that promotes relaxation and reduces stress and anxiety through gentle touch. Reiki practitioners use their hands to deliver energy to your body, improving the flow and balance of your energy to support healing.
Reiki practitioners are a conduit between you and the universal life force energy source. The energy flows through the practitioner’s hands to you. However, your Reiki healer does not always have to touch you for Reiki to work physically. “You can receive Reiki healing from long distances, like on the phone,” Tamara said. Instead, clients experience the energy through heat, cold, tingling, or pulsing sensations.
There are many benefits to Reiki. Reiki can:
- Promote relaxation, stress reduction, and symptom relief to improve overall health and well-being.
- Bring on a meditative state.
- Foster tissue and bone healing after injury or surgery.
- Stimulate your body’s immune system.
- Promote natural self-healing.
- Relieve pain and tension.
“Breathwork is extremely helpful in moving any stagnant energy,” and that is why Tamara gives the people she works with a two-minute meditation that consists of breathwork. One breathwork exercise is placing your hand on your heart and feeling the movement of your heartbeat. Doing this technique for two minutes will recenter you and can be performed anywhere – office cubicle, home, etc. Even a deep belly breath, hold, then release is a great way to release stuck emotions.
“The process of inhaling brings in what we need, and that full exhale is letting go of what we do not [need],” Tamara said.
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Feature image by Johnce/ Getty Images
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This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
There’s nothing quite as humbling as navigating adulthood with no instruction manual. Since the turn of the decade, it seems like everything in our society that could go wrong has, inevitably, gone wrong. From the global pandemic, our crippling student debt problem, the loneliness crisis, layoffs, global warming, recession, and not to mention figuring out what to eat for dinner every night. This constant state of uncertainty has many of us wondering, when are the grown-ups coming to fix all of this?
But the catch is, we are the new grown-ups.
As if it happened without our permission, we became the new adults. We are the members of society who are paying taxes, having children, getting married, and keeping our communities afloat, one iced latte at a time. Still, there’s something about doing all these grown-up duties that feel unnaturally grown-up. Enter the #teenagegirlinher20s.
If there’s one hashtag to give you the state of the next cohort of adults, it’s this one. Of the videos that have garnered over 3.9M views, you’ll find a collection of users who are overwhelmed by life’s pressing existential responsibilities, clung to nostalgia, and reminiscent of the days when their mom and dad took care of their insurance plans.
no like i cant explain to her why i had to buy multiple tank air dupes from aritzia #teenagegirlinher20s #fyp
The concept of being a 20-something or 30-something teenager is linked to the sentiment of not feeling “grown up enough” to do grown-up things while feeling underprepared and even nihilistic about whether that preparation even matters.
It’s our generation’s version of when we ask our grandmothers how old they are and they simply reply with, “I still feel 45,” all while being every bit of 76 years old. In this, we share a warped concept of time while clinging to a desire for infantilization.
Granted, the pandemic did a number on our concept of time. Many of us who started the pandemic in our early or mid-20s missed out on three fundamental years of socialization, career development, and personal milestones that traditionally help to mark our growth.
Our time to figure out and plan our next steps through fumbling yet active participation was put on pause indefinitely and then resumed provisionally. This in turn has left many of us hanging in the balance of uncertainty as we try to make sense of the disconnect between our minds and bodies in this missing gap of time.
Because we’re all still figuring out what the ramifications of being locked away and frozen in time by a global pandemic will have on us as a society, there really is no “right” way of making up for lost time. Feeling unprepared for any new chapter of life is a natural rite of passage, pandemic or not. However, it’s important to not stay stuck in the last age or period of life that made sense to us because self-growth is the truest evidence of personal progress.
So whether you’re leaning on your inner child, teenager, or 20-something for guidance as you fill the gap between your real age and pandemic age, know that it’s okay to grieve the person you thought you would be and the milestones you thought you’d hit before you ever knew what a pandemic was. If there’s anything that the pandemic taught us, it’s that we have the power to reimagine a better world and life for ourselves. And if we tap into our inner teenager as a compass, we can piece together our next chapter with a fresh outlook.
Sure, we’ve lost a couple of years, but there are still some really amazing ones ahead.
Featured image by Stephen Zeigler/Getty Images