Creating Your Sanctuary Space.
a sacred space, a place of refuge of safety
By incorporating aspects from each of your five senses, you can create a sanctuary space for yourself where you can retreat, reflect, refresh, + recharge.
Think about things like the colors that surround you, the images you see, the words you read, or the light that is entering your space. All of these factors contribute to your sanctuary space in a different way + can have significant impact on creating a healing environment for self-care.
"The field of mind-body studies includes research on the relationship between our surroundings and our health. Studies show that a healthy and pleasing environment (like plants in your office, or a treasured photograph on the wall) can do more than simply improve your mood--it can actually affect your immune system and physical health. "
- How Does Your Personal Environment Impact Your Wellbeing? by the University of Minnesota
Smell is the strongest sense tied to your memory. It has a direct effect on your limbic system + has the ability to significantly transform your thoughts. Using aromatherapy topically, or in your space is a great tool to add another layer to your sanctuary space.
"Scents can have positive effects on mood, stress reduction, sleep enhancement, self-confidence, and physical and cognitive performance," says Theresa Molnar, executive director of the Sense of Smell Institute. By becoming more aware of the way specific odors affect you personally, you may be able to enhance your health and well-being.
"Touch is one of our most important senses – touch can also help us feel more connected to our environment – running our hands over smooth pebbles in the creek, walking barefoot across sand on a beach, noticing a warm gentle breeze against our skin, touching beautiful fabric such as silk.
Tuning into our sense of touch is an easy and effective way of activating our parasympathetic nervous system, which is our resting and regenerating state. Even something as simple as paying attention to the sensations when we wash our hands is enough to trigger this state, especially if we use water which is slightly warm. Hopefully we wash our hands multiple times throughout the day. Each of these times is an opportunity to slow down, feel the cleansing water against the skin, smell the soap, breathe. Then we dry our hands, and tune into the sensations of this. We can then return to our activity refreshed, and feeling more present and grounded."
Incorporating the power of sound into your space can affect mood, vibrations, help us reduce stress, create a deep sense of well-being and even promote healing.
"Some sounds simply make us feel better than others. Whether our conscious minds are paying attention or not, our bodies take their cues from these sounds and rhythms, knowing when to get energized and when to slow down."
Fill your body with things that are both nutritious AND spiritually nutritious; remember that ultimately, your body is your first sanctuary space. The food you eat affects your mind, body + spirit.
"Eating healthy is one of the very best things you can do for your body and mind. It’s simple: The foods you choose to eat every day determine on a daily basis how you’ll feel that day."
We can also use the emotional messages of food to tell us a lot about our state-of-being + help you see your food choices through a different lens.