Being well can’t be defined by only one aspect of our life such as “eating right” or “exercising.” It’s so important that you are aware that wellness includes your mind, body, and soul. Sometimes, we wait till we are physically sick or overwhelmed with life’s stressors before we take a moment to breath or ask for help. Taking a moment every day for self-care allows you that second chance to take a deep breath, exhale and reset. Learning how to hit the pause button will help your physical body. It allows you to tap into your food preferences and hunger levels, reduce stress, and take a time out to give back to yourself. All those points are hallmarks of self-care.
Self-care is exactly just that. Taking care of yourself. It looks different for everyone meaning there is no one size fits all solution. Practicing self-care isn’t always easy either. Focus on one of the tips below and allow yourself the opportunity to explore self-care.
1. Self-Awareness and Meditation
Who wants to take a vacation every day that doesn’t cost anything and is within your reach? Try this 5 minutes a Day of Meditation routine to “be in the moment.” This can help you center yourself and allow you to appreciate the things in life that you not realize you could appreciate. It can help reduce anxiety, improve sleep, and allow you to live in the movement – no matter what life is throwing at you.
Sleep is critical to not just recharge your brain, but also your body. Chronic lack of sleep increases your risk over time for stroke, heart disease, higher blood pressure, accidents, anxiety, depression, and diabetes. You also can’t manage your stress as well day-to-day. Getting enough sleep helps with memory, acknowledging hunger levels, better quality of life, lower stress level, and improved attention span. Try to go to bed 15 minutes earlier than you normally would. Think about your sleep routine and how you can improve it. One of the biggest hurdles for individuals is putting down their electronic devices to let their minds wind down before bed.
Finding movement or exercise that is right for you is important. We all know it’s good for us, but we need to find movements we enjoy and that resonate with us. Daily movement can reduce stress and anxiety and allow you to have a more fulfilling day. You don’t need to have a gym membership to find a routine that works for you. Try a 10-minute seated chair exercise, yoga video, or opening your hips yoga on YouTube, or go for a walk with your dog or friend.
4. Say No to Others and Yes to Yourself!
Saying no is very challenging. We want to help our friends and loved ones. However, if you’re already overworked, over-stressed and overextended, saying yes to loved ones, friends or coworkers can lead to anxiety, irritability, and burnout. And when we constantly give others our time and energy, we don’t have time for ourselves. It may take a little practice, or a lot of practice, but once you learn how to politely say no, you will become more empowered and more in control. Plus, you can use that free time caring for yourself.
5. Enjoy Nature!
Getting outside into the fresh air can do wonders for our body, mind and soul – especially with summer right around the corner. Spending time outside can help you reduce stress, lower your blood pressure, reduce fatigue and help you be more mindful. Getting outside can also improve your quality of sleep if you do some physical activity, like hiking or walking, while you are outside. If you are stuck in an office all day, set a goal to go outside and walk 1-2 blocks mid-morning, at lunch and again mid-afternoon. A burst of sunlight and fresh air will beat that afternoon fatigue and is cheaper than coffee.
How do you practice self-care? Let us know what tips and tricks work for you, in the comments below.