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I use negative self-talk as my guide. If most of the things I'm saying to myself are mean, I am struggling.
For self-care, I steal as much time as I can for the passions that give me life. Anything that I do for myself and no one else. A good book and a long soak are terrific, but I find the value of doing something creative or productive that I love lasts longer, for some reason. A lesson hard-learned.
Remember, only ten days till it starts getting brighter again!
Blending my own herbal tea, eating a bar of flavored dark chocolate very slowly, buying a cute new notebook, taking a long walk in the park where all I have to pay attention to is trees, greenery, squirrels, birds (I live in the city, it's necessary therapy).
And of course, gaping at strangers' dogs for so long that someone has mercy and lets me hang out with theirs.
Barring that, I'm not too old yet to eat myself sick on cotton candy.