Let’s Talk About Self-Care
I want to preface this blog post by making it clear that self-care is not the same as self-indulgence, or being selfish. Self-care is all about taking care of yourself so you can be healthy, and stay well before doing anything else.
Self-care has been a topic of discussion everywhere and it’s rightfully so because now more than ever, we all need a bit of self-care.
Self-care is part of how we cope with daily stressors, and it’s about taking steps to focus on our physical and emotional health needs. It includes everything related to staying physically healthy – which includes exercising, taking care of our personal hygiene, nutrition, and seeking medical help when needed. These are all the steps we can take to manage the stressors in our lives and take care of ourselves for our own health and well-being.
Self-care requires checking in with yourself and asking how you’re doing mentally and physically. It’s about listening to your mind and your body and giving yourself the rest you need. Self-care is different for everyone – some use it to deal with difficult news and others use it to maintain their happiness day-to-day. Self-care is not the same for everyone, and everyone has their own way to practice self-care.
Why Practice Self-Care?
Practicing self-care regularly can help you put your best foot forward. When we take care of ourselves regularly, we react to things better and handle situations healthier. It’s a great way to maintain a positive well-being.
Engaging in self-care regularly can reduce or even eliminate anxiety, depression, and stress. It can improve concentration, minimize work frustration and anger and improve energy and so much more. From practicing physical self-care, it can help to reduce heart disease and other physical conditions and illnesses. By paying attention to yourself and your well-being, you are reinvigorating yourself so you can be the best version of yourself.
Different Types of Self-Care
Self-talk. You read that right, talk to yourself. Ask yourself what you need and then give yourself that emotional support. Have a bubble bath, make yourself your favourite meal, take yourself to get your nails done, or read a book for pleasure. Whatever it is, there’s nothing wrong with pampering yourself.
Another way to show yourself emotional self-care is by practicing how to say “no” when you need to. If you feel yourself getting stressed from work or other responsibilities, saying no to taking on additional tasks will help you set boundaries for yourself, and give yourself permission to take a pause, and breathe when things are getting too much. When I start to feel overwhelmed, I choose to meet up with a good friend or set up a virtual coffee date to chat and unwind.
Prioritize your sleep. Sleep is so important for your body so be sure to give yourself that much-needed rest. Another way to practice physical self-care is by exercising. Adopting an exercise routine that you can stick to can help you out so much! It can be as easy as taking a walk or going for a run, or doing yoga. Choosing a healthy diet, eating healthy and picking nourishing food over processed food can also help fuel your body and your mind.
Unplug and spend time in nature. Taking some time out of your day to meditate, or write in a gratitude journal are some other simple ways to practice spiritual self-care.
How to Start a Self-Care Routine for Yourself
- Figure out which activities make you happy, replenish your energy and restore your balance
- Start small by picking one thing you want to incorporate into your daily routine
- Slowly build up to practice that one self-care activity every day of the week and see how you feel
- Add an additional practice when you’re ready
- Be sure to get support from loved ones, a licensed professional, or a coach
A few ideas to help you begin your self-care journey
- Start your day by doing some breath work
- Eat breakfast
- Put your phone down for 30 minutes and don’t pay attention to any notifications
- Have a bedtime routine and stick to it
Self-care doesn’t have to be difficult. If practiced regularly, self-care can have a really positive effect on your health, but it does require you to invest in yourself. So ask yourself, are you ready?
In Health and Wellness,
Nadia La Russa