We’re in the last stretch of the year, which for many of us means the busiest time of year. From year-end work closeouts to the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, often, the last thing on our list is prioritizing our own well-being. In fact, much of the reason I believe many of us start each new year with resolutions for ourselves is likely because we’ve managed to neglect the needs and desires of our body/minds in the months leading up to the new year.
This year, however, I’m planning to maneuver a bit differently. I have a few self-care practices already in place that I plan to ramp up even more over the next couple of months in hopes of balancing the drain that can be caused by year-end stress. Here are a few things I’m doing to prioritize my self-care throughout the season:
Since I was in high school, one of my favorite consistent bi-monthly activities has been getting my fingernails done. Not only do I appreciate the artistic expression of nail art, but I love having a few hours blocked off every month where I can do absolutely nothing because my hands are being cared for. However, due to nail salon access, often getting pedicures has been trickier. Thanks to my 4Front® 2 Power Wheelchair, I can get a nice pedicure as well. The salon we found in LA allows me to elevate my power wheelchair to a comfortable position and then places a small basin on my footrests. From there, the nail technicians can easily access my feet without compromising my comfort or their ability to work. Pedicures have become a huge highlight of my month and I refuse to stop when the weather is cooler.
Given this is my first fall and winter living in LA, I’m looking forward to exploring new places and trying new experiences that will keep me out of the cooler temps. From restaurants to concerts to movies, I look forward to safely adventuring in my new city. In fact, we recently tried a new black female-owned wine bar near our house. The food, drinks and service were phenomenal! I desire more of those experiences as I exit 2022.
I’ve always believed that words have power. What we believe impacts what we say and what we say impacts what we experience. As such, speaking positive affirmations each day is another aspect of self-care I plan to practice more diligently this season. This includes phrases like, “I deserve to rest,” “I deserve to experience happiness and joy,” and “I’m worthy simply because I exist, not because of what I produce.” By practicing saying phrases like these each day, I’m confident that my external activities (or no activity) will reflect how I want to feel and be as I close out my year. How do you plan to prioritize self-care as we end the year?
About Andraéa LaVant: Andraéa is a disability consultant and worked as an impact producer for Crip Camp, a feature-length documentary on Netflix. Andraéa lives in California and uses a 4Front 2 Power Chair.