My Night-Before-Birthday Ritual for Self Love and Transformation

reading time: 7 min

I  L O V E  self care days, especially self care days for body, mind & soul. (I cannot believe that this blogpost where I shared my actual birthday self care routine was three years ago already!! My hair was sooo short in comparison to now!) 
Ever since having done the free 21 Day Abundance meditation program by Deepak Chopra for the first time, I try to incorporate an element of "luxury" into my everyday life (BTW: I found a youtube upload of the complete program if you're interested; I've also just discovered a 22 Day Divine Feminine meditation experience by Alicia Keys and Deepak Chopra today that I plan to do soon and that was also uploaded to youtube!!). This can be something as "small" as picking a wildflower to put into a vase, enjoying a piece of rich dark chocolate, drinking a cup of coffee with my favourite creamy oat milk, or putting on a face mask.

Every now and then I will do a full pamper day, and the day before my birthday is such a day!

I don't remember when this started to become a tradition for me, but for as long as I can remember I spend the night before my birthday treating myself in various ways. You could say, this is my celebratory "rebirthing" ritual, from my old self to my new self. This might sound cheesy, but I do believe that each birthday – just like the new year – holds within itself the opportunity to change. To grow. To leave the old behind and unfold the new. The ugly duckling turning more and more into a beautiful swan spreading its majestic wings each year. Our higher self, if you will.

Too often we focus on whether or not we receive love (and messages and presents!) from others on our birthday, when in truth we should bring our attention to ourselves. Love ourselves. Celebrate ourselves. And anything coming from others will be added cherries on top of your already perfect cake!

Join me on my regenerating pre-birthday pamper day for self love and transformation!

My 8-Step Annual Re-Birthing Ritual

#1: Fresh Bed Sheets

Let's be honest: Is there ANYTHING more cosy, comforting and luxurious than a freshly made bed right after taking a hot bath or shower? To me, it is one of the most heavenly feelings, and definitely one I make sure to put clean crisp sheets on the bed in time for my birthday.

In this case I went for our white cotton bed sheets that my fiancé got for us as kind of an engagement gift, so it has a very special meaning to me

#2: Fresh Flowers

Flowers! I love flowers (and anything plants), but especially fresh flowers with a lovely fragrance. If I could, I would have a couple of bouquets with fresh flowers in our house every week! But since I don't agree with the wasteful nature of cut flowers, I only get these for special occasions such as birthdays or certain wiccan festivals like Beltane, which honestly makes them more special to me and almost equivalent to "self love" and luxury.

How about you? Do you like flowers? I know some people don't care for flowers – my fiancé's sister is one of these people, and she will often give any flowers or indoor plants she gets as gifts to me 🙏🏼 The beautiful white flowers in the picture above are actually the "floral leftovers" from her recent wedding!

#3: Regenerating Face Mask

If the sole reason you clicked on this blogpost was the you were intrigued by the vibrant pink face mask in the title image, I can't blame you! Face masks are probably my number one favourite way to show my body some TLC, and this one in particular makes my heart sing💕 Plus, it really brings out the blue tones in my eyes, haha!

Here's what you need for this DIY regenerating face mask:
2-3 tsp dried roses
1 tbsp rolled oats
2 tsp fresh or frozen and thawed blueberries, mashed
1 tsp honey or coconut oil
1 tbsp coconut yogurt
1 tbsp rose water (or filtered water)
(optional) 1/2 tsp hibiscus powder

Mix all ingredients in a small bowl, and apply to your face. This makes enough for two masks – or you could set half of it aside before applying the mask, and eat it later 😂 
This mask is packed with anti-oxidants and quite gentle, which makes it great for sensitive skin. Due to the oats, it also has a light exfoliating effect.

I will sometimes combine face masks with a relaxing facial massage using a gem roller, but since this mask is quite chunky and sticky, I didn't do that this time. (By the way, my hair is up in this cinnamon bun because it's full of hair oil and hella greasy 💦)

#4: Re-Connecting Cacao Ceremony

This has not been a part of my night-before-birthday ritual before this year, but ever since learning about the healing powers of a cacao ceremony and getting ceremonial grade cacao from my fiancé for my birthday last year, I have started to integrate doing cacao ceremonies on special occasions such as my birthday, New Year, our wedding, and perhaps some of the wiccan festivals.

I really want to dedicate a separate blogpost to the power of a cacao ceremony soon [UPDATE: It's online now!], but to give you an idea of what the benefits of this practice are, it helps to open your heart, to connect with your higher self, to deep-dive into your emotions, to be fully present in the moment, to get out of your head and into your heart 💜


#5: Journaling

I honestly don't really journal very often, but if I do, I take my time. This time I sipped on my ceremonial cacao while writing down all the feelings and thoughts about my present time. The effect was quite astonishing, because I ended up crying for almost half an hour, followed by 24 hours of having a sudden cold, which disappeared as quickly as it came. Honestly, these cacao ceremonies are powerful! 👀

By the way, a new way for me to journal is to simply answer the following questions that were introduced to me by the amazing Jenn Im:
1. my daily affirmation
2. today i want to focus on ...
3. 3 things i'm grateful for
4. 3 traits i love about myself
5. the person i'm becoming
6. i have the opportunity to be my future self today when i ...
7. i am proud of / that ...

#6: At Home Mani-Pedi

Just like journaling, taking care of my nails is something I often neglect or forget about – but when I do it, it feels sooo good! Being a natural, minimal make-up sort of person, I don't go for bright colours when doing my nails, but instead usually stick to either a peachy nude shade or even just clear nail polish. Still, I feel much more put together when I take the time to trim and file my nails, oil and push back my cuticles, and either leave my nails "naked" or put on a bit of rosy shine 🌸

#7: Oracle Cards
In my blogpost on how I practice self care for body, mind and soul on my actual birthday, I mention writing down birthday resolutions for the coming year. This gives me a clear vision on what I want to achieve or experience that year, such as finding our dream house, doing yoga every day, finding a new source of income etc.

As a companion ritual to that, I have also made it a habit to pick a card for the coming year of life from either my tarot deck or from my new oracle deck that my mum gave me, to check in with my inner guidance and get a new sense of direction. In this case I picked a "birthday year card" from my mum's oracle deck, and then went to pick a card to see what my first step towards inner growth and peace would look like. This might seem scary or weird at first, but the "next step card" that I picked was The Devil, which doesn't mean anything bad, but it simply "represents your shadow (or darker) side and the negative forces that constrain you and hold you back from being the best version of yourself." This card tells me that my next step towards growth will be to face or be confronted with old negative habits, thought patterns and believes (which I can 100 % confirm 🌚), and that I am challenged to free myself from these old patterns and chains.

Sometimes I also like picking a card online from people like The Gem Goddess, which has always hit home so far – even more than I would have liked. If you ask me, a good oracle card (or reading) will shine a light on an issue you may be avoiding or confirm something you were already thinking about doing. The way I see it, oracle cards don't show your definite future in some magical way, they only reflect your own unconscious mindset (in terms of the future or any other subject). So by consulting your oracle cards you aren't asking some external force for an answer, but rather yourself. The energy you radiate will attract the card or cards you pick. Makes sense? :)

#8: Re-Birthing Bath
Lastly, but almost most importantly – taking a bath. This has for the longest time been part of my pre-birthday routine, but unfortunately I have not had a bathtub for the past four years, so this picture is actually from my last birthday ritual four years ago!

In my book, a good nourishing and restorative bath that will make you feel like a new born baby includes dry brushing,
oiling my hair (I had already done that in the morning, so all I needed to do is wash my hair thoroughly), doing an oil massage (abhyanga), using a fragrant DIY body scrub, shaving, soaking in a warm bubble bath (or at the moment, standing in my shower) with lots of candles and/or salt lamps, slathering my body in body lotion, and calling it a night! 💖

I hope you enjoyed this post, and maybe feel inspired to treat yourself to a sacred little pre-birthday ritual for self-care, self-love and transformation! 
What are your favourite things to incorporate into a pamper night or day?