Let’s face it. When it’s that time of the month, you don’t feel sparkling and pretty. I know I don’t.
All I want to do is curl up in my favorite chair in my pajamas and read a book or mess around on Facebook. I don’t want anyone to talk to me, I don’t want anyone to bother me or ask for anything. I just want to be left alone to wallow.
Wallowing soon becomes sleeping. Inevitably, someone wants something, and I get irritable. It’s not a pretty sight.
It took a while, but I began to realize that curling up in isolation doesn’t help me at all. I learned the hard way that I need to get out of the house and pretend I feel good – and actually feeling good soon follows.
Here are some things that I do to get out, to pamper myself, and make it a time to look forward to instead of a time to dread.
- Take a long, hot shower.I get out my fancy bath scrub, and I make a point to linger in the shower. I massage my scalp with shampoo and carefully comb conditioner through my hair. I gently massage my salt scrub into my skin and pay attention to the feeling of the water rinsing it off. Simply noticing all the sensations of the shower makes me feel better.
- Get dressed. I love my pajamas. There are some days when Joe gets home from work and I am still wearing my pajamas. That kind of laziness is nice once in a while, but it won’t make you feel any better. Get dressed in your favorite jeans and comfy top, and get ready to get out of the house.
- Schedule time with the girls. Nothing cheers me up like a couple of hours with my best girlfriend. It doesn’t matter whether we’re grabbing a bite to eat, taking a walk together, or scouting out yard sales, time spent with her is a gift to myself.
- Get a pedicure. Pedicures are my favorite. I go to a walk-in nail place where you don’t need an appointment, so I can just drop by whenever the mood strikes. The lady massages my feet and legs while I sit in a chair that massages my back and neck. She pretties up my toenails and paints them a sparkling color. Having a pedicure makes me feel more put together, and that is especially important when I don’t feel my best otherwise.
- Get your hair done. I love getting my hair done. The beautician (are they still called beauticians?) massages my scalp, makes me feel amazing, and I leave looking my best. What’s not to love?
- Exercise. Who feels like exercising when she has cramps? No one, that’s who. But that’s the time when you need to exercise most. Getting the blood flowing through your body and endorphins pumping is going to give you an almost-instant pick-me-up. You’ll feel a lot better afterwards.
- Get outside. Take a walk around the block with your kids or play tag with them in the backyard. A nature study walk is always nice; see what treasures you can collect. Getting outside into the fresh air is another pick-me-up that works every time.
- Use essential oils. Any time I need to boost my mood, I use the same combination of essential oils: Valor on my wrists, Joy on my heart, Harmony on my belly, and White Angelica rubbed between my palms and over my face, neck, arms, and legs. (Valor and Joy come in the Premium Starter Kit.) For cramps and other symptoms, you can try Progessence+, Panaway, Peppermint, and Stress Away as well.
- Play. Brené Brown says the definition of play is time spent without purpose. Play a board game with your kids. Play video games. Solve a crossword puzzle or a Sudoku. Go to an amusement park. The point is to do something just for fun.
- Create something. I love to craft. Scrapbooking, designing projects for my kids, painting, making Mod Melts, it’s all fun to me. Creativity nurtures your soul in a way that nothing else can, and flexing your creative muscles will leave you feeling pampered (as long as you don’t judge yourself – just let your work be, and be happy with it).
- Bake. I don’t know about you, but when I have my period, I want to eat. I especially want to eat sweets. My favorite this month is gluten-free cheesecake (made with a pecan crust so gluten-eaters love it, too), but I’ve gone through many different phases. Before I was gluten-free, Oreo truffles were always a big hit (Google those. You won’t be sorry. Or maybe you will.)
- Have a mini staycation. Act like a tourist in your town. What would you see? Take the kids and go see it. Maybe a museum, a fancy ice cream stand, a corn maze, whatever. Doing something new and fun will take your mind off of the couch and your pajamas.
- Make sure you have plenty of Stayfree® liners. Because seriously. Who wants to reach for one when you need it and find any empty bag? That would be more than a headache.
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© 2014, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.