What is Self-care?
The answer is very simple. Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of ourselves mentally, emotionally, and physically. Practicing self-care is essential in maintaining a healthy and positive relationship with numero uno, yourself! Think of it as the Golden Rule reexamined. Treat yourself as you would like to be treated.
Now, I know what some of you are thinking. Taking time for you is not high on the priority list. You have got way too much to do! It can feel selfish. It can even make you feel guilty! I recently started on my own self-care journey and it took weeks of griping and excuses before I gave myself permission to do something that was just for me! It then took an entire extra month more before I was not feeling guilty about spending time doing things I actually liked!
So, after 3 months of spending a lot of time getting to know myself, I finally feel refreshed! Self-care for me has helped to produce positive feelings, help boost my mood, help calm anxiety, and even elevate my self-esteem resulting in higher levels of self confidence. And, here’s a major bonus, when you feel more confident, you get a certain bounce in your step that lets the whole world know, I AM FEELING GOO-OOD!
A lot of times when people talk about self care, they are talking about the emotional aspects of it. Dealing with stress, anxiety, depression, and sadness often disrupt long term feelings of wellbeing. Self-pampering does wonders to help trigger the relaxation response, which can prevent chronic stress from damaging your health.
Self-care takes practice and can mean different things to different people. Here are a few basic things that everyone can add to their self-care checklist.
- SLEEP! Sleep is an essential part of self care and taking care of you. Adults usually need 7-8 hours of sleep each night. If you are having trouble sleeping, try things like rubbing lavender oil on your feet.
- Eat well. DIET can be a scary word and there are tons of diets to choose from! Just trying to figure out what to eat can be stressful! Start small. Stick to things that are healthy and not processed. Try and replace one bad thing with a good thing, like water for soda or grilled instead of fried. How about eating vegis first? Small habits stick!
- Learn to say no! Make a list of things you don’t like to do or just no longer want to do! Examples might be learning how to say no to taking on extra things that you know you don’t have time for. Maybe it’s turning off your phone at a certain time, or something as simple as not checking emails once you get home.
- I know, I know. You don’t want to. You don’t feel like it. You don’t have time. But here’s the rub. Exercise is not just good for you physically; it’s also amazing for your emotional well being. It helps you to blow off steam and can lift your mood as well as your energy. So choose something you like to do (or maybe that you don’t dislike as much ) and get to work!
- Medical Care- schedule your annual exams! Do your follow ups!
- Spend time doing things you love! Write that novel or short story. Spend time with your family. Visit the museum! Whatever it is, take a cue from Nike and JUST DO IT!
- Relax! Try relaxing exercises like breathing or meditation. Get a massage or facial or a pedicure. Take a short walk, listen to your favorite song, call your favorite person.
- Laugh! Laugh as many times a day as you can!
Follow me over the next few weeks as I take a deeper look into self-care. I will be interviewing both team members and clients about their self-care regimens and talking about the huge benefits of the services at the Renaissance Day Spa as well as services that other businesses and friends of the Renaissance have to offer. I would love to hear all about your self-care journey as well! If you would like to be featured in our Self-care Series, please share your story with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Remember, taking care of yourself allows you to project awesomeness everyday!
Take care you,