I will begin with my own experience. I think we all do some sort of self-care but when you become aware of self-care you can pinpoint how much you truly give yourself.
I never realized how much I was depriving myself until I was mentally and physically exhausted. I had to hit a place of high stress, high anxiousness and feeling like I was running on fumes to really begin the process.
Once in a while I would treat myself to a luxury massage or haircut but I still didn't feel any better.
So what was I doing wrong?
The answer is very simple. It wasn't happening little and often.
As you may already know, for the last 6-8 months I've created a day for myself
For a few months, I worked part-time having every Wednesday off. That is when I decided to dedicate a day to myself. I'm in full-time work again now but "self-care Wednesday" is still my thing. When going back to work, I was nervous about how I was going to give myself some care on a work day.
Self-Care is sometimes associated with spa retreats, weekends away, vacations/holidays and it really doesn't have to be that expensive and time consuming. I love buying a bath bomb and having a luxurious bath with candles and a guided meditation on in the background. Sometimes, I will even go to a restaurant alone during my break and treat myself to a fancy lunch.
What brings you peace? Do that or something realistic. We all have busy lives whether it's looking after the kids, your parents, your pets, your home, your garden, your work but remember one thing, what good are we to any of these if we are tired and haggard?
Through self-care, I have been able to be even more present for my loved ones and at work. Nourish yourself with some time, some love, some compassion and some care.
- Guided meditation
- Drink water and take a few deep breaths
- Listen to your favorite songs
- Have a tea and sit in the garden/outdoors
- Read a chapter of your favorite book
- Cuddle with your loved ones
- Watch a short clip (something funny) on YouTube
30 minutes - 1 hour
- Go for a walk somewhere in nature
- Have a bubble bath with music and candles (I do this one.. a lot!)
- Cook a yummy, nutritious meal (try something different)
- Listen to a podcast
- Give yourself a Mani/Pedi or go to the nail salon and treat yourself
- Home facial
- Go out for a quick coffee or a bite to eat
- Take a trip to your local garden center.. (truly relaxing!)
- Move your body
If you have a bit longer
- Go for a hike
- Go dancing!
- Plant some flowers, herbs or fruit/veggies
- Cook up a storm, but remember this shouldn't be a chore. This should be an enjoyable, personal moment for you.
- Meet with your besties and have a laugh
Every now and then
- Get a luxury massage or facial
- Go away for the weekend
- Go on holiday
To be honest and realistic to my own life. I do a lot of cheap and cheerful things. I keep it simple. Every now and again I will treat myself but I don't do it often and I don't feel the need to either. Please don't ever think that self-care is selfish because it's quite the opposite. I have become so much happier in myself since really being aware of self-care and looking after myself first.
Tomorrow is Wednesday, I have planned to go for a stroll at my local beach then end my day with a workout and a yummy home-cooked meal.
I hope this was helpful. Take care.. some self-care.