Leading London life coach Jacqueline Hurst really understands the importantance of self-love. She talks us through her Sunday rituals, from surrounding herself with her favourite scented candles to practising calligraphy and cuddling her cockapoo, Piper.
The Wind Down
Due to the nature of my job I’m pretty much always ‘on’ but Sundays do tend to be quieter. It’s the day when I can really calm down and take things that little bit more slowly. However, I’m a big believer in self care and being gentle, kind and loving towards myself is an essential part of my life, regardless of what day of the week it is, but Sundays tend to less fast-paced and I find I have less to juggle and more time to relax and prepare for the week ahead. I don’t find it difficult it wind down or switch off; I stop drinking coffee around after 12 noon and find cutting out caffeine from that point is really beneficial for me. I’ll have a long, slow lunch and then around 4 or 5pm I start my wind down. I love massage, and this really is a Sunday night thing for me. I know this amazing masseuse who comes to my house and does a really great hot oil massage for two hours at a really good price, so why wouldn’t you?
The first thing I do is light a really big candle – I’m a big, big lover of candles. I try and fill my house with them and I like clean, fresh scents like Byredo’s Cotton Poplin. If I’m having a nice hot bath, I love soothing, relaxing oils, and I like silence while I’m in the bath. My job is about talking to people all day, so for me complete and utter silence is a real treat. I don’t wash my hair on a Sunday night, I just tie it up on the top of my head and leave it. So I turn the lights down low, pile my hair on top of my head and then it’s chill time. When I get out the bath, I apply a thick body lotion – something rich and comforting.
I’m big on taking care of my skin. I’d say my skin is normal, but these days I do take care of it so much more and I’m a believer in the benefits of drinking loads of water and that is something I do a lot. I am quite finicky about the products I use and a lot of my skincare is made up of medicated products recommended to me by my dermatologist. However, I’m meticulous about cleansing. For me, I’ve just got to get it all off and the thought of sleeping in foundation gives me goose bumps. I never use serums or oils because they don’t agree with me but I do use really great cleansers and moisturisers. I always come back to Eve Lom Moisture Mask because it’s not greasy, but it’s really thick and nourishing, which I love. I also really like Tan-Luxe The Face Illuminating Tan Drops. As a rule, I’m very anti ‘stuff’ on my face, clogging up my pores, but I’m not one for sitting on sunbeds and these lightweight drops give you a lovely, natural glow without sitting heavily on your skin. I have noticed that as I’m getting older I do need more coverage, the texture of my skin is changing and since I hit forty I’ve started using neck cream too – this is a new thing for me.
I like to read in bed, at the moment I’m reading Becoming by Michelle Obama but I read lots of different things. I’m also learning calligraphy, which I find really relaxing. It looks really easy but it’s not and so I’ll try to fit in some practising. I really like being in bed early on a Sunday, in the winter months I’d happily be in bed by 5pm. I can do everything I need to from bed, and I’m totally okay with that. Some people really suffer with guilt, but I don’t have that. I’m also into prayer, I’m not religious in any way but I’m very, very spiritual and if I need to get in contact with my higher power (I guess you could put it) I say a prayer to say thank you for the day and that’s very important to me. Before I turn out the lights, I apply loads of hand cream and I love anything that’s rose scented. I really like the This Works Deep Sleep lavender pillow spray. It helps me get into the mindset of sleeping, and I think that’s really important. As a life coach I’m always telling people, you can’t go from watching a horror movie to drifting off into dreamy sleep. I mean, you can if you don’t have a sleep problem but if you have got a sleep problem it’s the worst thing you can do. I’m a deep sleeper and once my head’s on the pillow I’m out usually, I’m very lucky in that respect.
I feel fabulous when I wake up. I love Mondays, I think that’s probably crazy but I’m like ‘YAY! It’s the start of the week, bring it on, what’s gunna happen!’ I’m a real lover of life and I’m very lucky to have experienced the life that I have in the way that I have because now I have a lot of gratitude for being alive. I just feel happy and grateful. I’m not a snooze-the-alarm person, I’ve got a gorgeous cockapoo puppy called Piper who usually jumps on the bed to wake me up. We have a cuddle and I’ll go and make a cup of tea. I like a good old builder’s. Every morning starts with taking Piper for a walk, and I’ll while I’m walking I’ll find three things that I’m grateful for. I have a nice long walk, for an hour to an hour and a half and then I’ll come home and shower and then I’m straight into my working day. That walk is really important for me.