In the previous post for the Treat Yourself 1 Week Course for Mind, Body, & Spirit, I shared some ways to get started with creating a self-care routine. Creating new habits and adding new activities to your calendar will help increase your chances of success with your new routine.

Keeping yourself interested can be challenging, but one way to increase your odds is to treat yourself to something you've always wanted to do. New and novel experiences, when added to your self-care routine, feel like giving yourself a little gift every day - who couldn't use a little more of that?

Staying motivated to do good things for yourself and to do things to care for yourself every day takes time. Motivation can wax and wane - rising and falling with the circumstances of the day and how you're feeling. Give yourself an extra boost of motivation by including something new.

Set up opportunities to Pamper Yourself

When you intentionally pamper yourself, you're indulging your mind, body and spirit with every attention, comfort, and kindness. Now think about it - when was the last time you treated yourself that way?

Pampering can become a go-to part of your self-care routine, but you've got to get started. think of something you've never done before - and it doesn't have to be break-the-bank expensive. A small, indulgent, luxurious act can have the same effect as a paradigm-shifting one - if you're open to it.

Perhaps consider scheduling a manicure or pedicure if you've never had one. Splurge a little and sign up for the extra foot massage and the super-premium skin cream and enjoy how smooth and silky your skin feels afterwards.

Put time in your schedule for a bubble bath with scented candles - set a soothing atmosphere in your bathroom, add some lovely music, and you can be transported into dreamland, right at home, especially if it's something you don't do often.

If your budget allows, plan a spa day either alone or with a friend - choose a place just far enough away from your regular "stomping grounds" to make it feel like a getaway without the expense of an overnight stay at a 4-star hotel.

Celebrate Yourself Today - Right Now!

How long has it been since you bought yourself a present? What about a little unexpected treat? Never, you say? It's high time we changed that - right now!

Think of something that's within our budget that you've been waiting for - and waiting for a while. Give yourself express and explicit permission to buy that indulgence without any further second-guessing or delaying.

Maybe it's a gorgeous pair of shoes that you've been waiting to go on sale - why keep waiting? If it's not a budget-buster, get the shoes!

Perhaps it's the cell phone upgrade that will take stress and bother out of your daily schedule. You know that cracked screen and less-than-beautiful case can probably still do the job, but why keep that shabby phone around any longer? Again - don't bust your budget - you might even be able to find a newer generation of the phone you have online at a great price! When my husband's cell phone literally died in his hand, he'd had it for a few years, and it was several generations old. Instead of spending $$$$ on a new phone and getting locked into a multi-year contract with a service provider, he searched online, found a brand-new phone one generation newer than his, and made the purchase. Happy husband, happy budget!

Little Things can Mean a Lot

There's no hard-and-fast rule that self-care must be on a grand, over-the-top scale in order for it to benefit you. The smallest gestures can carry a LOT of meaning and provide you with a rush of joy.

Small, free or low-cost treats allow you to keep your budget intact and treat yourself more often. Start making a list of little things that you've never done for yourself that could be added to your day, week, or month, choose one, and DO IT.

Do you love fresh flowers, but almost never buy them for yourself? Give it a try - seasonal bouquets are often quite affordable, and available at your local grocery store. You'll get a boost every time you walk past the bouquet on your table or desk.

Consider for a moment your favorite food - when was the last "special occasion" where you indulged yourself and enjoyed that special meal. Why not make one day a week, or one night a month the time when you increase the "special" vibe of the day and satisfy your hunger with that favorite food?

Get creative with your thoughts and ideas, and you'll find many new ways to indulge, and dare I say, spoil yourself without laying a guilt trip on yourself. Adding new experiences, or new twists on old experiences keeps your life and your self-care routine interesting and can help make them more meaningful.

Adding something new to your life will expand your world and enrich your life - and its high time you did that for yourself because you deserve it!

About the Author Dianne Daniels

Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, and currently residing in Norwich, Connecticut, Dianne M. Daniels' mission is to empower women 35+ to Express their most Dynamic, Intriguing, Vivacious, and Authentic selves with the Power of Journaling and Affirmations.

You can learn how to use these time-tested proven practices to create and manifest the life you want (and deserve) to live.

Dianne is an ordained Unitarian Universalist Minister and holds a Master of Divinity degree from Starr King School for the Ministry. She's an avid reader, a lover of old houses (she renovated an 1850s vintage Greek Revival home with her family) and has been journaling since the age of 9.

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