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New Moon Action: Practice Radical Self-Care to Nourish the Changemaker Within

August 02, 2017 | By Sofia Marbach

Selfcare Yoga

About Our New Moon Actions

In many time-honored cultures, the New Moon symbolizes potential and embodies a portal for a new vision. The moon’s 28-day cycle from New Moon to Full Moon mirrors the powerful feminine energy, epitomizing the process of creation to manifestation. Working in consort with these cycles is a powerful way to realize our dreams. From this space, on a monthly basis, Pachamama Alliance offers practices and actions to realign with our values for a thriving, just, and sustainable world for all.

"Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare."
― Audre Lorde

It’s easy to lose sight of our own needs when we dedicate ourselves so fully to our relationships with our loved ones, our greater communities, and our Earth. But self-care is beautifully prerequisite to care of any other kind. You cannot be caring fully for others or giving yourself wholeheartedly to the service of your community if you don’t first prioritize cultivating love and care for your own mind, body, and soul.

What Makes Self-Care Radical?

"Self-care and healing and attention to the body and the spiritual dimension—all of this is now a part of radical social justice struggles."
― Angela Davis

Radical self-care understands the act of caring for yourself as an opportunity for deep spiritual grounding in the fact that you are enough. It is not about seeking "better" or checking a "should" off your to-do list. We embrace self-care as Radical because it works against the grain. It works in direct contrast to a societal obsession with the individualistic can-do attitude that tells us a pause is a sign of weakness and encourages both a long list of self-expectations and self-deprecation when they are not met.

The adjective "radical" is defined as "forming an inherent or fundamental part of the nature of someone or something." The simple necessity of self-care, so different for each of us, is just that—a fundamental part of our being.

Radical self-care means connecting with your innermost self in a way that allows you to cultivate a courageous love for yourself and your truth. Here are 10 tips to get you started.

1. Cultivate gratitude.

Taking a mindful pause to give thanks for the blessings in your life can help you process negative feelings that arise and challenge you to recognize even the simplest joy. Starting a gratitude journal is a great way to make a habit of this practice.

2. Nourish your body.

Plants can heal and produce drawers can become medicine cabinets. Taking steps toward a plant based diet can reward both your own wellbeing and the health of the planet.

3. Keep moving.

Budget the time for precious exercise. Whether your body loves yoga, mountain climbing, endless squats, zumba, or gentle stretching, prioritize it. Your endorphin receptors will thank you.

4. Unplug for a moment.

Taking a break from electronics can help you tune out the screen information flashed at you constantly and tune in to the messages of your soul. Listen deeply.

5. Organize externally.

Something as simple as cleaning up the physical space around you can make all the difference in clearing out the junk you don’t need in your internal environment. Generating a list can help you relieve stress by turning overwhelmedness into a progression of steps.

6. Don't delay your joy.

Simple pleasures are not indulgent. Take a pause to doodle, try the recipe you’ve been meaning to, or revel in your own ridiculousness at trying to learn the dance routine from your favorite music video. Small things make up the facets of your happiness.

7. Make sacred space.

Making time to open sacred space grounds you in Spirit. You can practice this every day in a way that speaks to you, whether that looks like a mindful exercise of breath or simply taking a moment every morning to set your intention for the day.

8. Define your own goals.

Meditation and listening deeply to your innermost self can help you better understand your role in the evolution of a spiritually fulfilling, environmentally sustainable, socially just world of the future. This is where self care becomes caring for your community. Start with your calling and move toward reasonable goals.

9. Be with Pachamama.

Green space is necessary. Get outside, take your shoes off, and root yourself in the Earth. The experience of wildness affirms our connection with all things.

10. Choose connection.

"We are a way for the cosmos to know itself."
― Carl Sagan

Choosing to engage deeply and radically with ourselves lights the way for effecting change in community outside of us.

Additional Reading 10 Questions to Bring to Your Gratitude Practice What are  you grateful for? Explore how to bring more awareness to your gratitude  practice.

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