In discovering how to take the best possible care of ourselves, we often find beauty in the rituals we develop. While the hustle & bustle of everyday life forces us to channel our energy outward, rituals have the power to remove us from our routines and focus that energy on ourselves. That is the key to a ritual, it is intentional. It is an active choice to focus on doing something to ourselves, for ourselves. Taking this time to be truly mindful, to ground ourselves & get focused can make an enormous difference on our overall well-being. Rituals should NOT feel like another responsibility, like brushing your teeth or doing house chores. Instead, rituals are enjoyable practices that are daily treats for ourselves, allowing us to destress, regroup, and, ultimately, be our best selves for those around us.
There are no rules to rituals, no right or wrong on how to practice them. A ritual can be anything you want it to be, so long as it involves an element of mindfulness. For example, I love to smudge with palo santo before bed and while it may seem like part of a night time routine, it is a treat I pause to think about and focus on as I do it. By clearing the energy and setting a positive intention before bed, it sets me up for a night of good sleep and even better day to come! Whatever rituals you choose to practice remember they are your something special to keep.
WITH ALL THE RITUALS OUT THERE, SOMETIMES IT'S EASIER TO BREAK THEM DOWN INTO TIERS.
I. INPUT - Food, tonics, juices, anything you put physically put into your body. You might be asking, how can this be a ritual? Well, given that we consume throughout the day, transforming this very normal practice into a ritual allows one to develop a mindfulness of what you are putting into your body and what your body needs. Mindful eating focuses on enjoying your meals, eating slowly while sitting, paying attention to different flavors, and, listening to your body tell you when it is hungry vs. full. Practicing mindful eating as a ritual allows you to connect your mind with your body in a way that will make you feel more centered and controlled. If you are a busy bee, mindful eating can be used as a time to chill out. Use this time to examine your mood, soak in your environment, and give gratitude.
II. OUTPUT - We at Romney are obviously huge fans of this tier of rituals. Exercise is perhaps the easiest ritual you can implement into your daily life, operating as a crucial time used by you, for you. Whether it's a thirty minute walk in the middle of your day, a private Pilates session, or a 50-minute RIDE class, we think any time spent moving is time well spent.
III. BEING - All of the rituals that don't directly involve consumption & exertion. What do we mean? Meditation, bathing, dry-brushing, body oils, we could go on... Treating your body as the temple that it is, these rituals can overlap, allowing you to, for example, practice deep breathing as you take a bi-weekly bath. These are the rituals that truly make you feel good, grounded & at peace.
Try one this week!
We all know that input is just as important as output, and that the food and drinks we choose to consume determine how we end up feeling. In our day to day schedules, finding the time to sit down and have a relaxing meal or even a coffee break can become difficult. Therefore, intentionally focusing on what we put into our bodies is an easy, important, and truly rewarding ritual to incorporate into your day.
A super easy and delicious daily ritual is treating yourself to a homemade matcha latte. Matcha is high in antioxidants, helps to detoxify the body, enhances energy, and is loaded with a variety of other benefits. Taking the extra couple minutes to make a matcha latte and enjoy it can offer the perfect moment to take a step back and focus at the start of or middle of the day.
When it comes to food, take the time to pick out and prep the foods you know will be most beneficial for you. If we think of eating as a special time to nourish and heal the body, it becomes a ritual rather than just a routine to fuel yourself.
Bottom line if something makes you feel good, makes you think and act with intention, and creates a better sense of mindfulness for you then it can definitely be considered a ritual. Don't let the thought of having daily rituals stress you out or feel like a chore, slowly add any of these or other acts of indulgence to your day to aid in creating and supporting the best you possible!