I’ve said it time and again – planning a wedding can be blooming stressful. There’s no escaping the “stuff” that comes with getting married, managing families, negotiating with suppliers, even the admin associated with actually tying the knot.
I think it’s absolutely vital that you don’t run yourself ragged planning your wedding. While some of the hassle is unavoidable, it’s important to take time out from planning to take care of yourself and make sure you can enjoy the process. That’s why every week we’ll bring you a different relaxation technique from our expert team of chillout artists. Today’s exercise comes from complementary therapist, Lorraine Doron, a woman who really knows her stuff . How do I know? She’s my mum – she’s been telling me to relax my whole life.
More than that, though, she’s an aromatherapist and reflexologist (among many other natural therapies) with decades of experience in chilling people out. So, proving that mum really does know best, I’m handing over my first ever Chillout Sunday post to her – try this at home when you get half an hour this week, you won’t regret it.
Chillout exercise #1 – the ultimate relaxing bath
By complementary therapist, Lorraine Doron
It sounds like a cliché, but there’s nothing more relaxing than a good, old-fashioned soak in the bath. Not only is it wonderfully relaxing for tense muscles, but it forces you to sit still and do nothing but focus on your own wellbeing.
If you’re not a bath person, become one! Showers are really invigorating, which is the opposite of what we’re trying to achieve here.
I say if you’re going to take time out to have a bath, do it properly. There are several steps to creating the perfect, relaxing bath – so be indulgent, put yourself first and give it a go!
Create some quiet space
This can be hard if you have kids and / or a man kicking around the house. Some people find creating half an hour of quiet time really difficult, but perhaps on an evening when your man is engrossed in something else, the kids (if you have kids) are in bed, or you’ve sent him out to the pub, make good use of the time and solitude and seize the opportunity to have your bath.
Switch off your phone
I know, it’s easier said than done. But just for the half hour, switch off all communication to the outside world. People will survive if they can’t reach you for thirty minutes and you’ll feel much more ready to deal with a ringing phone when you’ve had a chance to unwind.
Dim the lights
It can be really hard to relax with bright lights in your eyes. Dim (or switch off) the lights and, if you can do it safely, light candles around the room. Again, it sounds like a cliché but it’s much easier to float away with the right atmosphere.
Put on some relaxing music
Only you know what kind of music will relax you. There are specialised CDs you can buy with music specifically geared towards stress release. Or you can compile your own playlist. Here’s a relaxing song to get you started…
Use the right blend of essential oils
There are several aromatherapy oils that can really help to relax you. You can use all the oils together or, if you’re not keen on all of them, you can use them individually or in different combinations of two and three. If you are pregnant please seek advice from an aromatherapist before using essential oils.
One drop of sandalwood encourages deep relaxation. The sweet, aromatic scent of wood is really pleasant and it’s also great for the skin and hair.
Two drops of geranium can help find your inner equilibrium and is perfect for stressed out people who are burning the candle at both ends. This oil has a rose-like scent and is often called “the balancer”. It is also fantastic for the skin.
Lavender oil is immensely popular as it has hundreds of therapeutic properties. Promoting relaxation and helping deep sleep are among the long list, as well as (you guessed it) being great for the skin. Two drops in your bath before bedtime should have you sleeping soundly the whole night through.
Two drops of mandarin in the bath will be calming and relaxing and help to create a lovely aroma combined with the above oils.
If you want to add a touch of decadence to your bath, you can find this blend in bubbles on my website, or you can purchase the Relaxation Pure Essential Oil blend in 5ml or 10ml bottles.
Take deep breaths
Help your body unwind by taking deep breaths. On every out breath, feel your muscles unwind as you melt into the warm water. If any distracting thoughts come into your mind, try to put them away for later – remember you’re not going to leap out of the bath to call your wedding planner, so do your best to leave your worries outside the bathroom door.
Lather, rinse, repeat
Try to do this at least once a week, if not more frequently. It may feel more productive to spend every second of your day wedding planning, but in actual fact you will be able to get more done if you’re in the right frame of mind and have taken time out to pamper yourself! By the time you reach your wedding day you’ll be relaxed, very very clean (!) and radiant!