The world is a busy place.
It demands a lot out of us on a daily basis. Juggling work and home life along with social activities and exercise can result in a full plate.
It’s important to take a step back from the chaos now and then and practice self-care. If you perpetually keep going, you might end up burning out.
Let’s check out what it takes to look after yourself.
What It Means to Take Care of Yourself
So, what does it mean to take care of yourself?
If you are somebody who puts others before yourself, it might have been a while since you did anything that was entirely selfish.
According to Wikipedia, self-care can be described as any actions or attitudes that help to maintain a person’s well-being. They promote personal health and human development.
Anything that falls within this definition can be interpreted as self-care. Self-care is subjective – this means that it is whatever comes to mind when you think about maintaining your well-being and promoting your health.
Alissa Marquess of Bounce Back Parenting has good advice. She says that if you care for others without stopping to take care of yourself, you will eventually break down from the pressure.
The irony of this is that if you break down, you lose the ability to nurture others. It’s a lose-lose situation. No matter who you are, everybody deserves the opportunity to look after themselves.
When you do stop to care for yourself, you slowly start to recharge and regain energy you lost from helping others so much of the time.
Alissa says that once you’ve regained this momentum, you can be free to help others again because you first helped yourself.
Self-care Ideas to Suit Everyone
Developing Good Habits points out that there is no single perspective on what are the best self-care ideas.
Because everybody is unique, they’re going to have unique and original thoughts on what self-care means to them.
This complicates self-care to an extent. There isn’t one right answer to caring for you. Just because one form of self-care has worked for one person doesn’t mean it will work for you.
There are, however, some self-care ideas that everyone could benefit from. Let’s take a look at what these might look like:
- Learn to Say “No”: Developing Good Habits discusses the importance of learning to say “no.” It can be hard if you’re not used to saying “no,” but in the end the only person you’re hurting is yourself.
- Think Positively: try and challenge any negative thinking that inhabits your mind. Our thoughts can often dictate the outcome of our day, so thinking positively can lead to having a better day.
- Learn Something New: we could all benefit from challenging our brain and learning something new. It’ll bring a sense of accomplishment.
Four Self-care Tips You Can Practically Apply
You’ve got a great list to start you off. Practicing basic mental self-care that involves challenging yourself in intangible ways is a great step in the right direction.
However, many of you learn by doing, not observing. Being equipped with practical tips that you can integrate into daily life is an effective way of maintaining regular self-care.
Let’s take a look at four ways you can practically apply self-care:
- Take a Different Route: we are creatures of habit. Chances are you take the same route to work every day. Ellen Bard of Tiny Buddha explains that changing things up and taking a different way somewhere creates new neurons in your brain, which is healthy.
- Declutter: living in a cluttered mess can often result in a cluttered mind. Purging those items from the wardrobe that you’ve hardly worn can make you feel lighter.
- Discomfort Zone: do something that scares you. This can be as trivial as talking to one stranger today. You never know, you might make their day.
- Breathing Exercises: learning how to breathe slowly and deeply can be beneficial to your anxiety and stress levels. Ellen suggests breathing deeply into your stomach, before exhaling slowly.
Everyone’s Self-Care is Unique
Everyone is different. Many of you consider self-care to be walking around a large mall and using shopping as therapy.
Others will want to get as far away as possible and find your solace between the trees.
Even more of you wouldn’t consider going outside, opting instead for a good book and a snuggly blanket.
Whatever it is that you consider self-care, make sure you practice it on a regular basis. The better you can take care of yourself, the better you can take care of those around you.
Everyone will benefit from your self-care.