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January 31, 2023

Cultivating presence with ourselves and those we love

This time of year, we’re acutely aware of the importance of intimacy in our lives, both with ourselves and those we love. We may need extra support to get us through the cold and darkness. We’re reminded that we need safety and connection, a metaphorical and literal home where we feel safe, held, and free to be ourselves. With so much sadness going on in the world, the intimacy and closeness that we seek requires presence, and we must make space for it. In an attempt to facilitate more of this presence and intimacy in our lives, both with ourselves and others, we’ve compiled some ideas for ways to slow down more often. The activities and items below can serve as gifts for ourselves, for people we love, or to share.

True intimacy with ourselves isn’t always easy or pretty, but we can be enticed to come home to ourselves more often with items in our everyday lives inspire us to do so. A bath soak we love the scent of might help us to remember to get off our phones and get into the bath for some alone time, or a robe we love wearing might inspire us to have a longer, slower morning. Slowing down to enjoy these sensory pleasures is a small way to bring mindfulness and greater embodiment into our everyday experiences and mundane tasks.

It is difficult to feel a sense of connection with one another when we’re distracted or stressed, but eye contact and talking aren’t the only ways to cultivate intimacy. Sharing quiet space is another way we can feel close when we might not have the energy or spaciousness for deep connection. That could mean reading together, doing a puzzle or crafts together—anything that calms our nervous systems and allows us to just exist in shared space together. Many members of our MINNA team love to knit, crochet, weave, or embroider in their down time. It’s a great way to reduce our external stimulation and bring us into a more relaxed state. We love these embroidery kits to work on in the quiet moments, as an alternative to scrolling.

We might feel rushed to prepare a meal, but if we slow down to make an activity of it, it can be a really enjoyable way to connect—whether alone/together, for ourselves or to be shared. We recommend pouring a glass of wine and listening to a playlist you love while you cook, or FaceTiming a friend.

Another way to cultivate self-intimacy is to create a space to return to each day, with the only intention of presence with ourselves; even if it’s just a corner of the room or the foot of the bed. Our large Pantelho Pillows are perfect as floor pillows for having a cup of tea, reading a favorite poet, or just having a quiet moment with ourselves before we rush into the day— even if it’s just for a few minutes. Throw an Abstract Throw in the mix and you won’t want to leave.