My top four self-care discoveries of 2018

My top four self-care discoveries of 2018
My top 4 self care discoveries of 2018.jpg


This was my top-most-wonderful self-care discovery of 2018!

Holy wow, I experience this, it has a name, maybe I’m weird but I am not crazy!

I always thought of myself as strange for feeling like every haircut would make me so sleepy. I have a HUGE thing for keeping cotton swabs on me at all times — super relaxing. (I kinda thought I was too odd for the Q-tip thing, I admit).

Don’t tell me it’s bad for my ears and pushes the wax down. That’s not true. I haven’t had an ear infection since toddlerhood and I LOVE ear candling, aka The Greatest Thing Ever.

These are just two examples of what I’ve gotten out of ASMR before I even knew it was a thing.

Now I am an ASMR junkie!

You can learn more about ASMR on this site, or simply YouTube it to see what I am talking about. A friend posted an ASMR video on her Facebook and I rolled my eyes, “Wtf is up with these people and their weird soap cutting videos, anyway?” She posted that the video helps her relax after seeing clients (we work in the treatment field).

So I thought if this stuff helps her relax in a sober way after seeing some of our demanding treatment clients, why not give it a second look? I had been trying yoga nidra to no avail. (Giving that one another shot in 2019 too).

Then I got my daith pierced in November, which led to my ASMR light getting turned on. I realized there was such an amazing sensation there after my initial piercing pain subsided. Then I began looking up ASMR videos nightly on YouTube before bed. Before long, I’d discovered a few favorite ASM-artists. (TingleBelle and The Lune Innate, who incorporates Reiki into her ASMR).

I’ve discovered I am totally a sound ASMR-type of person. But I love certain sounds like whispering, hair cutting, slime, tapping, brushing, etc. I have yet to find an all-slime video so I may have to get into making my own!

Related honorable mentions:

  • Slime

Noise-cancelling headphones

2. Self-care is not all hot baths and sheet masks

I think this may be a meme going around, or it was at one time.

I want to be the first to admit I fell into the ethos of, “fix it with a hot bath, a bath bomb, and a sheet mask!”

Self-care meant a variety of things to me in 2018. Some days it was ice cream and Beyonce.

Other days, it was just get home without killing anyone and go to sleep.

Self-care also became extremely important throughout the year in the form of setting boundaries personally and professionally. I worked harder at strengthening my boundaries than ever before.

I decided to reject diet culture and make self-care about body acceptance and loving my own body the way it is without changing it. This practice has resulted in far more self-respect and self-love than any “diet” or “lifestyle change” program could have ever given me.

3. If it isn’t working, break it

I realized through a summer of health difficulties that my life needed to change.

I may or may not have passed a kidney stone over summer, but I did end up in 12 weeks of physical therapy total. It was the summer of PT. It was helpful in some ways and a waste of time/money/serenity in others.

In the middle of that drama, our company-sponsored healthcare changed and I wasted nearly every spare hour of two whole weeks trying to stay ahead of that.

Then I decided, “No more!”

I chose to cut back my hours and purchase my own health insurance — the opposite of what society wants us to do. Although I made my decision in July, I didn’t get to actually do it until December.

Now I live in joy and bliss, feeling more free. I can spend more time coaching and being a reporter, less time as a social worker in the treatment field.

4. Take a vacation, any trip will do

I got sober on 7/1/13 and steered clear of my family since.

I wanted to feel strong in my sobriety before exposing myself to the family system that raised me.

For Christmas 2018, I visited my family for the first time since I got sober. It was amazing!

Some people I hadn’t seen in 5, 6, 8, or 14 years. I left the family with my heart feeling full and my addict soul feeling healed. It was 100% the right choice for me to stay away — and then, to return.

But the healing power of “wheels up” can’t be bought in a store… Nothing fixes my soul the way a packed suitcase and an airline ticket can.

I am going to have to figure out where I want to go in 2019 and when I am going!

Happy 2019 to you!


Certified Transformational Life Coach, Heather Larson

Wichita, KS