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7 Small Changes To Try Out This Week

Small change, big difference.

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1. If you have 3 minutes: Watch this joyous Sesame Street clip.

View this video on YouTube

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Julia is the first muppet with autism on Sesame Street. Stephanie https://www.buzzfeed.com/stephaniemcneal/julia-sesame-street?utm_term=.ob5PnDQ9Za#.inL8qgD25M">reports:

"Julia is played by puppeteer Stacey Gordon, herself a mother of a son with autism. Gordon told 60 Minutes she traveled to New York from her home in Arizona to audition for the part. She said the fact that an autistic character is being included on the show is 'huge.'

"'It means that our kids are important enough to be seen in society,' Gordon told 60 Minutes. 'Having Julia on the show and seeing all of the characters treat her with compassion.'

"She said she hopes kids will better understand autistic children like her son after seeing Julia on the show.

"'Had my son's friends been exposed to his behaviors through something that they had seen on TV before they experienced them in the classroom, they might not have been frightened,' Gordon said. 'They might not have been worried when he cried. They would have known that he plays in a different way and that that's okay.'

"She added: 'It's important for kids without autism to see what autism can look like.'"

2. If you have 5 mins: Read this update on therapy from YouTuber and writer Grace Victory.

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It's rare to hear from someone in the *middle* of therapy, and Grace writes so openly and vulnerably about how hard she found it to open up:

"In the beginning I hated everything about therapy. Although I genuinely liked my therapist, I hated her for making me feel so vulnerable. So naked. So exposed. I avoided my sessions as much as possible. Initially I made excuses as to why I couldn't attend face to face (I'm busy. I'm ill. I'm dying) but when Emmy (my therapist) suggested Skype calls, I would switch off my phone or pretend I was sleeping lol. Even though my problems were affecting my life, I still wanted to run from them.

" I guess I didn't trust Emmy enough to tell her what was happening, what I was feeling, what I was thinking. I'd opened up and trusted people before but it had always gone wrong so my guard was UP, all the way up. She was persistent though. I think she saw my potential even though I didn't and for that I'm so so thankful."

Read the whole blog post here.

3. If you have 10 mins: Try meditating.

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Let me preface. Meditation and reflection looks different for everyone, and for some people, it's just not what they need. And that's OK!

I've used lots of different apps, to varying success, but what's working for me at the moment is standing over the seeds that I'm growing on my windowsill, watching them slowly unfurl which I have my morning coffee.

H/T @mrsgingerrivera on Twitter for the tip.

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4. If you have 15 minutes: Spend your money in a way that makes you feel good.

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Every week I seem to write about how self-care doesn't need to be conflated with spending money. But if you want to spend money, why not do it in a way that brings you joy? I've just bought a copy of this zine about mental wellbeing, called Do What You Want. All the profits go to charities and not-for-profit organisations. There's an excerpt from the zine currently on Rookie if you'd like a further look.

I also recently bought the above print by Julia Scheele – she's an illustrator featured in Do What You Want, and 50% of the profits on the print go to Refugee Action UK. Buy it here, £15.

5. If you have 20 mins: Add something to your diet.

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This article about https://www.buzzfeed.com/sallytamarkin/simple-dietary-tweaks-that-are-not-whole-30?utm_term=.eiBzg5EBQW#.ppJ6y3lYV1">small dietary tweaks is full of good advice:

"You don't have to change anything about what you're already eating, just add a fruit and a vegetable along with your breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

"That could be as easy as sauteed spinach with breakfast and blueberries on the side, steamed broccoli and an apple with lunch, and sauteed green beans with dinner, using fruit as an after-dinner treat! That way even if your meals are not the healthiest, you're guaranteeing your body vital nutrients through the fruits and veggies you add in."

—Anjali Shah, board-certified health coach and founder of The Picky Eater

6. If you have 30 mins: Watch a show that makes you feel good about yourself.

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Watch a show that reinforces the fact that you can be who you want and represent yourself how you want. And I can't think of any better show to recommend than RuPaul's Drag Race – now in its ninth season and on Netflix.

If you want to find out some more about queer history, and the terms they use in the show ("serving executive realness", for example), then legendary documentary Paris Is Burning is also on Netflix at the moment.

7. If you have 30 seconds: Read this tweet.

Hey you guys this monastery adopted a schnauzer and named him Father Mustache forget your worries for a few seconds… https://t.co/hd1ExA8grf

This is a weekly series! Got a self-care tip you’d like to suggest? Let me know in the comments or tweet me.