Practicing self-care implies many different things. For some people, self-care comes easy and for others, it isn’t always that simple. This is because self-care is a highly individual practice and process.
Usually, self-care is the process of taking care of our mental, physical, and emotional health. When you put it like that, it sounds fairly easy. However, most of us lead busy lives, we have demanding and stressful jobs, we’re taking care of our families and finding time to do something for ourselves feels selfish and often leaves us feeling guilty.
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Still, it’s important to take time to care for your mind, body, and soul. If you don’t take care of yourself no one else will. So, make time for some me-time.
Here are 6 easy habits to help you start practicing self-care.
- Do what makes you happy
Self-care doesn’t have to be anything big or radical. Practicing self-care is simply doing things that you enjoy and that make you happy. If you’re new at trying to practice self-care, start small.
Every day, make room (30 minutes is enough) to do something you love and that makes you happy. Read a book, go for a walk, cook or bake something, really whatever you enjoy. But, make sure no one disturbs you during this time – this means silencing your phone as well.
Immediately you’ll notice how good you feel after just a week of doing this every day!
- Eat healthy food
Another easy way to practice self-care is eating healthy foods. Healthy and nutritious food can affect more than your weight. Eating healthy can improve your mood, memory, and skin amongst many other things.
When it comes to healthy food, versatility is the key. Your diet should consist of quality protein, fruit, and vegetables, and whole foods. The more colors on your plate the better.
Avoid eating processed and unhealthy foods, stick to home-cooked meals. Cooking at home is much healthier than eating out according to various studies. If you’re looking for a small change towards a healthier life, changing your diet is a good starting point.
- Oral health
You may have heard that oral health is linked to our overall health. Many dental and oral diseases are related to severe chronic diseases such as stroke, heart disease, and even diabetes. Apart from chronic diseases, poor oral health affects our mood, self-confidence, and the quality of our lives.
All the above mentioned are reason enough to start taking care of our oral and dental health. Visit a good dentist regularly to avoid having problems with your teeth. If you lack confidence because your teeth aren’t straight or because they aren’t white enough, all you have to do is visit a reliable orthodontist.
Taking care of your dental and oral health is one sure step towards practicing self-care.
- Squeeze in some exercise
Any type of physical activity is welcome. If you aim to take better care of your body, changing your diet is a way to go. But, if you want to go a step further, regular exercise is a perfect solution.
Regular exercising, apart from helping you keep fit and comfortable in your own body, also helps you with mental health and emotional wellbeing. Exercise reduces stress, negative mood, anxiety, and depression.
Only 30 minutes of daily exercise can do a lot for your overall well-being. Surely, you can spare 30 minutes every day and squeeze in some exercise for the sake of your overall health?
- Spend time outdoors
Most of our lives pass with us cooped up inside sitting behind a laptop or computer screen. If you’re trying to practice self-care, a good way to do so is by going out in nature.
Weekends are the perfect time to spend outdoors, in nature reflecting and clearing your thoughts. The fast-paced lives we lead often leave us stress and fatigued.
A good way to relax, escape technology and information overload, is spending weekends in nature. Walking, hiking, cycling, enjoying the scenery and birds chirping. After one such weekend, you’ll feel refreshed and relaxed – ready to start a new working week.
- Indulge in little things
It’s not selfish to enjoy a glass of wine after a long day at work. It’s also not selfish to take a bubble bath from time to time and just relax. Make some time to indulge and pamper yourself.
Dedicate some days as spa days and simply spend time relaxing, rejuvenating, and pampering yourself. Put on relaxing music, do your hair, nails, put on a face mask – and enjoy!
Create a self-care routine that works for you and that you’ll actually stick to. It’s very easy to give up and say it didn’t work out. Think about all the reasons you need more self-care.
Consider that your physical, mental, and overall health depend on it. And don’t let anyone tell you that taking good care of yourself is selfish!
Mike is an Australian business consulting specialist. He’s working with companies that outsource their IT maintenance. He often writes about technology, business and marketing and is a regular contributor on several sites.