Cleansing the Mind, Body, and Soul
We all go through a time in our lives where we need to cleanse ourselves from situations, people, habits, etc., that no longer serve us. This type of cleanse can come in the form of a juice cleanse, a spiritual journey, meditation, rituals, a yoga retreat, or journaling for example. Whatever you decide as your method of cleansing and ridding your life of these negative vibes, be mindful that the process is one that you’re comfortable with and that you’re willing to truly let go. The rituals I’m sharing are ones I practice daily or when I need healing.
Palo Santo – Holy Wood
If you’ve never heard of Palo Santo, then you are in for a treat. Palo Santo is a sacred wood that is found on the coast of South America. It is known amongst cultures to have healing powers and is commonly used in sacred rituals. When it is burned, the smoke is believed to have both medicinal and therapeutic healing powers. Its aroma is incredible and proves to be one of the most fragrant woods in the world. The most popular methods of using Palo Santo include spiritual purifying, energy cleansing, protection, and for blessings of love and prosperity. Its scent is so incredible that it is great to burn before and during meditation.
I burn Palo Santo everyday. I wake up, give my pup a good morning kiss, and begin my morning ritual. I light my Palo Santo stick, and once it catches fire, I blow it out and let the smoke fill my nostrils. I slowly swirl the smoke around my head, torso, arms and legs, and set my intention for that day. I then swirl the smoke around my sweet William and say a short prayer for his health and well-being. Following my Palo Santo ritual, I meditate and treat my body to a short yoga flow to get my morning going. I find that having a daily ritual creates a bond with your own self and allows you to fully appreciate your alone time.
Dry brushing is another daily ritual I treat my body to. I literally brush my entire body with a bristle brush before taking a warm shower. So what’s all the hype about? Let me explain. Dry brushing is incredibly beneficial for your skin, lymphatic system, and blood circulation. Your skin is not only the largest organ of your body, but it holds one third of your body’s toxins and is essentially an organ of elimination. Dry brushing daily helps rid your body of dead skin layers, stimulates your lymphatic system to help remove toxins, tightens skin and reduces cellulite, and unclogs your pores. These are just a few of the many benefits of dry brushing.
I use a natural bristle brush with a long handle. Begin in your shower wearing your birthday suit. Start at your feet and begin brushing upwards towards your heart. Use long sweeping motions. Be mindful when brushing sensitive areas. Brush the front and back of your legs and arms and gently brush your abdomen and chest. Once you reach your back, this is where having a long handle is important, continue brushing upwards towards your heart. Once you reach your shoulders and upper back, begin brushing downwards towards your heart. When finished, take a warm shower and pat dry your skin and moisturize accordingly. I love applying almond oil on my skin.
This morning/evening ritual is one for the books! It may seem like a lot of work, but it will only take you a few minutes to complete and after a few weeks of this practice, it’ll become your favorite habit. Dry brushing also gives you a burst of energy and makes your skin tingle. It really is a treat.
Writing. This is the most expressive and vulnerable method of cleansing, in my opinion. As much as I enjoy writing, when I first began to journal, the thought of letting go of my deepest most emotional thoughts on paper made me cringe. I thought to myself, “What if someone reads this?” And in all reality, if someone does happen to find my journal and feels inclined to read it, then by all means enjoy the show. Did you ever have a diary growing up? My sister sure did and I was definitely the nosy little sister who wanted to know all of her business. But journaling is a bit different. It’s a space where you can write your desires, your intentions, your frustrations, your beliefs and dreams, your doodles, recipes, whatever it is that makes you feel calm and at peace. That to me is journaling.
Some days you may only have one sentence to write. Some days you may write a poem or a story you heard. This is the time you allow yourself to fully brain dump and release all of that extra brain chatter so that you may feel calm and at peace. We often go to bed with so much on our minds that we sleep restlessly. This is a practice I enjoy doing before bedtime. I keep my journal in my nightstand and once I’m in bed, I pull it out and start jotting down my first thoughts. I continue writing until I find myself pausing and searching for more to write, this is when I know I’m free of the brain chatter. I let out enough to release and sleep peacefully. I then throw on some binaural beats and I’m ready for a good night’s sleep.
These are just a few of my rituals. I find that having a daily ritual keeps me balanced and focused. What are your daily rituals?