I hope your week was amazing, full of peace and magic.
Last week I wrote about radical self love and body positivity. I know this is a hard topic for a lot of you and as the seasons turn, it may just get harder.
I spent a lot of time this week trying to figure out the best way to help our readers in these dark days ahead. Fall can be a lot of stress for all of us. We have a lot of holidays on the horizon. There's a lot of work that goes into these celebrations and a lot of family time. That family time can be just as stressful as the work! Combine that with the days getting shorter and you have a recipe for stress, depression, and hard times with mental wellbeing.
With the day light hours getting shorter, we're also entering a colder period. The colder it is outside, the more likely we are to stay inside away from the sunlight our bodies deseperately need to maintain proper vitamin D synthesis. Low vitamin D levels are linked to depression so its essential that we all take good care of ourselves during this time.
So what can we do? Well first, I encourage all of you to reach out. If you don't have at least one friend who can handle you at your low points, please reach out to a community. Find groups online. Facebook has tons of options for support groups in any situation. Make sure you join several, you won't necessarily feel comfortable in the first one you find and your comfort is what determines how much help and support you end up with. If you never share, you never connect. If you have a large enough local community you may be able to find support with in person groups as well. You do have to be careful in these situations. Don't get so wrapped up in helping others cope with their lives that you let it drag your own situation into an unmanageable territory. You count too. You deserve to receive support too. You deserve your own healing. You can't clean up everyone else's mess.
I absolutely suggest that any of you who are financially able to, get a pet. Studies have shown over and over again that owning and investing your time into a pet can be incredibly beneficial on the pet owner's mental wellbeing. You have to be considerate of your cirumstances before you invest. As much love and adoration as a dog can give you, they come with greater expenses than a fish. I love my dog and Spirit loves her dog, we both have small chihuahua mixes. While our dog food bill may not be crazy with dogs well under 10lbs, we have to think about shots (some states and counties require specific immunizations so be sure to research your local ordinances), grooming, leashes, emergency vet care (which can be very expensive and must be considered), and pet desposits on rental homes. Cats come with similar expense lists. I love a good floof (cat), they have such a strong nature and when they love you its because they choose to love you. Its just that not everyone can afford the care that goes into them. Thankfully there are so many other options out there, from turtles, to lizards, to fish, to snakes, to hamsters and beyond. Do some research on what it will take to give that pet a great life and what it will cost to maintain that life. A pet can help you center. Having something to nurture, care for, give affection to and watch after can be amazing for your sense of self worth, your confidence, and your mood. People with pets live longer and enjoy their lives that much more.
If a pet isn't an option in your current situation you can still get the benefits of a pet through volunteer work! Every humane society, shelter, and rescue wants your help. Those with a phsycial location want you to come and interact with the animals. You can help them socialize, take them on walks, assist with vet care, and help with simple daily care tasks. Volunteering can be incredibly rewarding and you can help in any way you are able. You don't need to put in full time hours, you don't need to be the vision of health. All you are required to do is to show up and put in some effort when you're ready. Many of these organizations offer short training classes to familiarize volunteers with policy and practices of the organization, but once you have your training you are welcome to come and go as you can. They welcome the help!
If pets aren't your thing, I still enourage you to find your volunteer passion Even if you only have one hour to give once a month, you will find that helping people with that hour gives you peace, purpose, and joy. The people you are helping will be thrilled to have you. You are an asset afterall! Never forget that you are an asset. You can meet a lot of like minded people if you put yourself out there in a volunteer capacity, and its never a bad idea to build your tribe. If you have anxiety that prevents you from more hands on volunteering please don't let that stop you from sharing your gifts. Every organization needs filing help. You can give of yourself a little bit a time until the day you feel that you can take the next step, if that day comes. If it doesn't, that's ok because you are still doing something great.
No matter what you choose to do this fall, please remember to take care of yourself. Find a support group, adopt a new pet into your family, branch out in your volunteering or just read a good self help book to keep you motivated on finding and keeping your self worth. They are all worthy causes. You are worth investing in.
Stick with us lovelies. Spirit is sending me a book soon to read over. Once that happens, we'll be working on a giveaway with that book! I can't wait to work out all the details and share them with you! I can tell you this much, there will be multiple winners and at least one of you will win an essential oil diffuser AND a book. We are so excited to host this giveaway and share some of our favorite things with you all!