If I was asked to think of an individual who personifies the concept of self-care and creativity, Kim Morrison would fit the bill. Kim is the founder of Twenty8, a natural range of skincare and organic essential oils, passionate educator and advocate for self-care, and author who has published five books and is working on her sixth, in addition to launching a unique set of inspirational aromatherapy cards this month. Kim has dedicated her life to sharing the concept of self-care as a daily ritual and act of self-love.
Kim embraced an holistic approach to health as a teenager. She was a competitive athlete, representing Australia in ultra-marathon running, and has always strived to be the best she could possibly be. It was during these early years of training and enduring gruelling marathons, that she would observe her thoughts were not always kind during challenging times. These have been some of her greatest teachers and she encourages others to discover the gifts in challenges.
“I’m yet to meet a person, who has not had struggles or challenges, or believed they were not good enough or worthy enough. My question is, if that is part of being human, why is it that we struggle with the struggle so much? We all know when we are in those challenging hard times, that once we can come out of the vortex, that many times we actually find the greatest lessons, even gifts.”
Kim’s fascination with human behaviour, coupled with her passion for plants, herbs and oils, has enabled her to make a difference in the lives of others, as well as leaving a lasting legacy for her family and loved ones.
Kim has been an aromatherapist for 26 years, but this interest began at a very young age. “My love of plants has been there since I was a young girl. It began with my grandmothers actually, one was a gardener, and had green fingers. And my other grandmother was a baker and a lover of food. I was very lucky to have grandparents that taught me the power of food and the power of nature.”
Armed with this knowledge, and inspired every day by the people around her, as well as her own family, Kim writes, speaks and teaches the art of self-love.
“We are all told that in order to love others, we must first love ourselves. But no one seems to give us the magic formula on how to do that. And whilst it is easy when life is going great, it seems particularly difficult to love yourself when you are going through a challenging time. In fact, it is usually during these times, we tend to fall completely out of love with ourselves.
“What I’ve found is that it is all about the ebb and flow. Trusting it is all a process, one moment, one breath, one day at a time.”
On investigating the ‘how’ Kim has found the first step back to self-love, back to that core, is actually awareness of being in that self-sabotaging space, or that we are in that place of darkness, whatever that dark space looks like. This can be grief, loss, guilt, or it can be detrimental bad words about ourselves, shame, hurt, anger, resentment or fear. When you are aware that you are in that space, what you can focus on is self-care, which can be in any form. It can be a two second ritual, like spritzing with an essential oil spray; it can be putting bare feet on the sand or the grass; it can be reading an affirmation; and it doesn’t have to take a lot of time or money. It is being mindful of doing something nice.
Kim believes that given the right circumstances, anything is possible for the human spirit, and it’s not about quick fixes or New Year promises that are easily broken. “I think it’s more about a continual evolvement and a realisation we are all trying to do the best we can, we just need some tools to support us and help keep us on the self-love track.”
Kim has found that through writing books, and creating new ways of sharing her message of self-care, it allows her to practise what she preaches on a daily basis. “I’m very open with my team, my family and my friends. I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve. I realise sometimes I get it completely right and sometimes I can get it quite wrong. There are times I’m on a pedestal for many and for some there are times I completely fall off. There are moments when I feel like the ocean and there are moments when I feel more like I’m drowning in it. Some days I look out and wonder why I do what I do and there are days I receive a message and know exactly why I do what I do. Some days I love myself to bits, and some days I wonder if I’ll ever be enough.
“I often work really hard and then wonder though if it’s really smart. Sometimes there are mistakes and wrong choices, but thankfully there are times of joy and no looking back. I have come to understand some will talk about me in ways that do not serve me, and I have to appreciate those that do, have not walked in my shoes or carry what I do. Sadly, even unknowingly, there is criticism and judgment, and when I hear it I am shocked and feel so much hurt and go into that dark place. I have to take care of myself and remember that thankfully there are sweet surprises, kind hearts and unbelievable love and loyalty too.
“I realise some see me as a fearless leader and others see flaws and fears. Some will say I’m too open and share way too much, others see those sharings and as open-hearted vulnerabilities and strengths. I angst at all the suffering in the world and I marvel in all the magic it possesses too. I have come to learn that even though my number one driver may be kindness and care, some people will never share that same drive and neither will they care.
“As an entrepreneur, I may feel I have the best products, the most amazing education and beautiful business in the world yet no matter what I have, how much I give and all that I share, many will never see it in the same light, or fully appreciate how much it means to be supported when you’re a small business.
“There are days that as a woman I feel beautiful, sexy, intelligent, aware, spiritual and on fire, and then suddenly there are moments I am reduced to the likeliness of a red-faced toddler throwing a tantrum. As a mum, I can feel incredible and love it with my absolute heart, life and soul and yet within seconds, I can feel a complete failure and the most useless mother and human being on the planet.
“As I navigate my path in this thing called life with a desire to give as much as I can and with an intent to give it my best, I realise that for some, it will never be enough. And there are some days I wonder if it is just me? Or do others happen to feel this way too? I am learning the importance of celebrating the wins, the milestones, the fun. I am also learning in times of challenge and struggle to not ask, ‘What have I done wrong?’ But instead ask, ‘What is the learning, what is the lesson here?’”
Wouldn’t it be grand if we could just be, do and give our best, take a breath and be proud of who we are in the moment? Kim often believes it is important to celebrate the perfect imperfections. Maybe learn to trust it is all as it should be.
Kim’s sixth book is due for release in 2018, and launched this month are her unique set of inspirational Aroma Cards which are about blending ancient plant wisdom, modern science and intuition, and have been designed to support you through the highs and certainly the lows of life.
Kim believes that ultimately self-care and being kind is one of the most important aspects of self-love. Daily self-care rituals will help us to continue to move toward a goal or desire, despite the challenges we face along the way. “These cards are an act of self-care. Along with pure essential oils they can help override any obstacle and help lead you back to being in love with you,” she says.