Having A Self Care 'Magic Bag' Is The Perfect, Simple Way To Reward Yourself

The term self-care can be incorporated into your life in a number of ways. For some, it comes in the form of eight cups of water a day. For others, it's a head-to-toe spa session. Whatever the case, this specific type of care originates from the basis of the thought that, as the name implies, we have to take care of ourselves when the stresses of life get too heavy. Everyone reaches their quota of work and busyness at different rates, so when and how you decide to implement this practice is left to the hands of the beholder. However, one thing remains constant: personal maintenance can pertain to an emotional self-reset just as much as a materialistic one. 

The act of self-care means pruning away the things in your life that no longer serve you. The bonus is that when we combine the mental and physical aspects of "decluttering" both physical and mental toxins from our lives, we can experience a fully obtained life reset. Self-care days are also great for brain health, so finding ways to amp up the joy in renewal may be the trick to getting into positive habits.

New methods are constantly being generated to promote better mental health as a way to relax, reward, and "treat yo-self!" One of those newer, popular ways is to make what's called a "magic bag," otherwise known as a modern, wholesome homage to the goody bags of our childhoods. 

Customizing your magic bag

If you're looking to curate a magic bag of your own, it helps to know what to put inside. The "magic" of the magic bag is in the discarded knick-knacks and free samples you accumulate over a period of time, and how often you want to revisit them. Specific goodies can range from small candies, buttons, and mismatched jewelry to pretty much anything that has been cluttering drawers, piling on desks, or collecting dust on a shelf. When picking your items, make sure that each piece sparks sentiment, whether it's because it provokes special memories, or because it's aesthetically pleasing to look at. 

Personalizing your "magic" bag is half the fun because it incorporates decluttering efficiently, while simultaneously implementing specific aspects that bring you specifically, joy. These things can be physical, like saving up old postcards or ticket stubs, or about the mental benefits, like focusing on me time: putting on some music, wearing comfy pajamas, and reading all of the magazines and other mail you received over the past 30 days. 

Sparking joy

Another great thing about the magic bag is that you can pull from it whenever you'd like. It can be in dark, or light moments, stressful or stressless. It could be when you feel down or need a confidence boost, or perhaps when you want a reward after having a successful job interview. Sonja Lyubomirsky, PhD, stresses that it's important to implement "happy habits" like this because over time — like the fullness of your magic bag — joy will start to build up, like a used muscle. The American Heart Association says this is healthier for your mind and body in the long run because it lowers blood pressure, and reduces symptoms of long-term stress. This is a big reason why the magic bag is quickly becoming one of the best ways to get your closet organized and keep it that way.

If you're looking for additional inspiration or an extra self-confidence boost, try adding folded Post-it notes from friends or loved ones, or inspiring quotes you've written down that you can open along with candy or doodad. Greater Good Magazine suggests this element of surprise, in addition to encouragement, brings vitality to one's life and is a great way to self-motivate and reward yourself whether you're having a hard day, or are looking for an extra bit of sunshine. Whatever the case, celebrating spontaneity is one way we can spark a sense of joy when using our magic bag, as well as make it personalized to us and our emotions.