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A Simple Guide to Self-Care on a Shoestring Budget

There is no doubt that the current pandemic situation has serious economic repercussions.  This makes it all the more essential to find inexpensive ways to take care of yourself, manage stress, and maintain a healthy immune system.   These small and inexpensive additions to your routine or environment can help you feel better! 

  1. Calming Scents and Aromatherapy — a scented candle, a few drops of diffused essential oils, or scented bath soaks can be very relaxing.   Lavender, bergamot, lemon, and jasmine are all excellent for stress relief. Peppermint, sweet orange, spearmint, and rosemary can help with energy and focus.  
  2. Find humor…wherever you can!  Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, improving your resistance to disease. It also triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals.  In these stressful times, binge-watching a funny TV show or movies has become an acceptable way to make yourself feel better!
  3. Have a cup of tea.  Herbal teas like chamomile can have an especially calming effect, and the warmth can soothe your nerves and muscles.  Take it easy on the caffeine though.  
  4. Get your groove on with some music!  Turn on your favorite playlist, or expand your horizons by asking Google/Alexa to play some happy energetic music.  Crank it up, sing-along, and have an epic dance party. Bonus points if you have a virtual dance party with a few friends!  
  5. Take a bath.  Everyone knows a hot bath can relax muscles and relieve general tension.  Adding Epsom salts, especially with some of the scents noted above. Add a homemade face mask or scrub made with simple ingredients like honey, oatmeal, or sugar for a mini-spa experience.
  6. Get Moving!  There has been a surge in the online availability of yoga and home workout videos and apps.  An exercise session doesn’t have to be long, complex, or involve special equipment. Just 10-15 minutes, whether it involves relaxing or getting your heart rate up can make a huge improvement in your mood and energy levels.

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