A Simple Guide To Self-Care
While the definition of self-care and self-love are different, both play an important role in fostering a healthy relationship with yourself. According to The Every Girl, self-love is a way you can achieve confidence. It’s how you feel better about yourself and accept your flaws. While self-care is the act of taking care of yourself physically and mentally.
Every Sunday, we see the #SelfCareSunday hashtag. Brands and individuals from all over the world post images of themselves in face masks. While taking care of your skin is important, it’s not the only form of self-care. Self-care is holistic. It’s taking time to be mindful and nurture all aspects of your wellbeing (spiritual, physical, intellectual, relational and emotional).
Here is a simple guide to practice self-care.
More Sleep and Slow Down
We live in a society that praises the constant “hustle” mentality. It’s completely okay to slow down and rest. We’re not robots, our bodies need rest and restoration. Use any extra time to incorporate resting sessions or “alone time” without distractions.
Having a solid nighttime routine and focusing on good quality sleep is a form of self-care. For better sleep, I use an app called Let’s Meditate (download here or here) which includes adult storytelling and different forms of meditation for beginners to intermediate users. As a result, I feel lighter, less anxious in the morning.
No matter your shape or size, putting movement into your body strengthens your physical and mental being. It releases what I like to call, “happy hormones”. Find a form of movement that you enjoy, whether it’s dancing, spending time outdoors or doing online workouts. Here are some of my favourite YouTube workouts:
- Dianne Bondy Yoga
- Amy Dixon
Your environment affects your mental space, which is one of many reasons I put a lot of effort into keeping my space tidy. I function better in uncluttered spaces. When I’m having a rough day and cannot get out of a mental muck, I try to reshift my focus by tidying a space or cooking.
The challenge is finding a cleaning system that works for you, and trying your utmost best to maintain it. You’ll be surprised to see the way your energy or mood changes in a space that’s tidy and clean.
Listening to Music and Podcasts
Listening to music, or a good podcast is a form of self-care. Did you ever notice how your mood changes after listening to a song or album you enjoy? Studies show that music evokes meaningful memories and creates peak emotions. Listening to music or a podcast can impact your emotions by improving your mood.
Speaking of podcasts, check out Conversations with Women of Colour here.
Self-care rituals go further than taking a bubble bath or applying face masks. Books help us tap into the intellectual aspect of self-care. Here our imagination is expanded, stress is reduced and we form a hub of inspiration. Find genres you enjoy and try not to put any pressure on yourself to finish the book. Rather, enjoy the process of escapism. Even if it’s just for 30 minutes per day.
The ultimate form of self-care and probably one of the hardest as well – setting boundaries. They stop you from saying yes when you’d rather say no. When you learn to implement boundaries, they also help you to focus on the important things in life with fewer distractions. Boundaries are a set of intentional self-care activities that affect your life, what you allow and have to let go of.
Disconnecting from the Internet
This is one of my favourite forms of self-care right now – disconnecting from the internet. Disconnecting helps you to reconnect with your inner self. It helps you to reflect and focus on other areas of your life. Very often, I find myself mindlessly scrolling on social media, consuming so much content. Whether we want to admit it or not, it does affect our mental health. Therefore, I’ve reduced my time on social media to a minimum. These days, I find myself reading books, listening to podcasts or simply journaling.
Having a self-care routine is a form of self-love. Whether you’re saying no, letting go of toxic relationships, allowing 10 minutes of daily quiet time or focusing on quality sleep, it benefits every area of your life.
How are you practicing self-care?
Until next time!