Self-care is the process of nurturing your emotional and
psychological health. Here are some ideas you might want to incorporate into
your self-care journey.
Living a well-rounded existence takes effort. You need to
get out of your way to ensure that all your choices lead you toward growth and
possibilities. However, that's not a job you can entrust to someone else. You
need to be in control.
Then again, taking control of your life's trajectory can be
difficult if your mind and soul are not in the right place. Such a situation
can easily weigh you down and derail your personal development. That is where
self-care comes in.
Self-care is the never-ending process of nurturing your
well-being, especially your emotional and psychological health. It's more than
just the occasional weekend staycation where you treat yourself to good food
and a relaxing massage.
Ideally, it's a sustained commitment that informs every
decision you make daily. That goes without saying that self-care doesn't have
to be an uphill battle, either. Lest you get discouraged from committing, know
it's perfectly doableâ€”no matter how busy you get.
Here are some ideas you might want to incorporate into your
1. Meditation and Mindfulness Practices
You don't need to have the flexibility of a yogi to pursue
mindfulness. Similarly, you don't have to go to the beach with a view of the
ocean and a backdrop of mountains to practice meditation. You can incorporate
these self-care exercises into your daily routine: in your room, cubicle, or
car in the middle of traffic.
You don't even have to call it meditation or mindfulness if
you find new-age words awkward for some reason. You can name it whatever you
want. So long as the process gets you grounded and centered, the terms you use
To help you get started with your mindfulness journey,
download a meditation app.
2. Regular Exercise
You've probably heard how regular exercise boosts emotional
well-being. According to Debra Fulghum Bruce of WebMD, "When you exercise, your body releases
chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in
your brain that reduce your perception of pain."
If you've been carrying heavy emotional baggage, it's time
to give the gym a shot. Who knows what could happen? The best result could be
you starting to feel unburdened. Meanwhile, the worse that could result from
your CrossFit training might be finding your entire body aching because it's
building those muscles you've always fancied. Either way, you win.
3. Creative Activities and Hobbies
Now if you're one of the lucky few who can play an
instrument or handle a paintbrush, find the time to create despite your hectic
schedule. It'll be nourishing for your soul.
4. Healthy Lifestyle
Start with good hygiene. Remember that hygiene is integral to self-care because you feel better about yourself when your body is cared for.
Another crucial component of a healthy lifestyle is proper
eating, which entails consciously choosing healthy foods in just the right
Take this lifestyle recalibration a little further with
abstinence from smoking and drinking. Go cold turkey if you have to, or have
accountability partners to help you with the transition.
5. Nature Time
This might be challenging if you live in a high-rise condo
amid a concrete jungle. But don't lose hope. All challenges have a workaround.
For example, you can start cultivating an indoor garden. This indoor garden does not necessarily have to be strictly
indoors, especially if your condo unit has a small terrace. To save space, you
can explore vertical hydroponic gardening.
If you live an hour away from a hiking trail, treat yourself to nature walks from time to time. You'll be amazed how this simple activity can be so rejuvenating. It's basically meditation in motion. As you inhale fresh air and bask in nature's many shades of green, you'll release all the tension from your body.
6. Social Connections
Cliches run the world. They're cliches because they're
pretty reliable. One of those cliches you need to turn into a mantra in service
of self-care is this: no man is an island.
No matter how introverted you are, you cannot rely
exclusively on yourself. You need to reach out to people and experience their
warmth and camaraderie. You have to maintain a strong support system made up of
friends and family.
This is not as difficult to do now as it was back in the
day, considering the presence of social media. However, ideally, your personal
relationships are not purely digital. Go out with your constants constantly.
Get updated on each other's journeys. Laugh about old stories that never get
Sure, many things in this world will weigh us down. There's
global warming on a larger scale. At work, your managers might not be aware of
how their leadership styles add undue pressure to your day-to-day. These
distressing things notwithstanding, it's important to be grateful, at least for
Gratitude allows you to see the small gifts of life that you
might otherwise not notice amid the daily grind and hustle. Gratitude enables
you to slow down and appreciate how you've grown and the still many
possibilities in the offing.
8. Quality Sleep Time
Of course, it's difficult to be grateful if you've only had
three hours of intermittent sleep in the past three months. No matter how hard
you try to be delighted by the cup of brewed coffee in front of you or
appreciate the sunset you see from your office on the 20th floor of a building,
you can't if your brain's foggy for lack of sleep. This is one of
self-care's biggest enemies.
To combat the lack of quality sleep, stick to a bedtime
routine. Go to bed at the same time every night and get out at the same time
every morning. The goal is to recalibrate your body clock for it to go back to
its healthy rhythm.
9. Screen Detox
We're all guilty of doomscrolling. The whole thing starts
innocently enough. You open your preferred social media platform with the plan
of just checking in. And then you find your phone's digital time has clocked
away a couple of hours or more away from your day. Not only is this detrimental
to whatever work you need to accomplish, but it's also a bane to your
Start following strict screen time detox schedules. You can
impose this rule at bedtime or on weekends. Sticking to this self-care strategy
will not just help you prevent eye strain; it will also boost your mood
10. Fulfilling Work
Life is too short to be working a job that makes you
miserable. Even if you're getting an excellent salary, you'll be at a high risk
of burnout. With that said, ideally, you pursue a career aligned with what your
heart and soul yearn for.
However, you also need to be realistic. Like most people,
you have bills to pay and can't afford to leave your job without a plan.
Reassess your priorities. If self-care is what you value
more, it might be in your best interest to shift to a more rewarding job, in
11. Financial Literacy
No matter how physically fit, well-fed, and creatively
nourished you are, if you find yourself withdrawing from an overdrawn account,
you'll find yourself in a great state of misery. That's because financial
health is crucial to your overall well-being. After all, the blues become bluer
when you're broke.
To save yourself from getting broke, commit to financial
literacy. Manage your revenue stream in such a way that you take care of your
present needs without overlooking future contingencies. A good rule of thumb is
always to have savings in the bank that can sustain you for at least six months
of being out of a job.
Jumpstart Your Self-Care Journey
Everyone will have a unique self-care journey. What works
for one person might not necessarily apply to another. Your best friend's
self-care pace might not work for you, and vice versa.
As such, you have to be patient with yourself. It's your
journey, after all. Stop comparing yourself to other people and focus on
yourself instead. The important thing is that once you commit to self-care, you
vow to be consistent with those habits that uplift your emotional and
Speaking of habits, we've already discussed self-care ideas
you might want to try. The list is by no means exhaustive, though. You know
yourself better than anyone else. You can design your personalized self-care
combo, so don't hesitate to do so. Track your progress with wellness apps just to be sure.