5 Ways to Practice Self Care
This last year introduced extra stress to most peoples' lives, and it became more important than ever to take care of ourselves. The words "self care" have become more prevalent than ever and we've had to find new and improved ways to de-stress our lives. Here are some of my favorite ways to practice self care.
1. Journaling Potentially one of the most underrated forms of self care is journaling. How many times a day do we have racing thoughts that take away our focus on the present? Journaling is a great way to let go of the racing thoughts and give our minds a break. You don't need to write about anything in particular, and you don't need to be a "good writer." Simply give yourself an outlet to express your thoughts and feelings. This can also be a great thing to look back on in a couple of years to see how much you've grown.
2. Treat yourself One of the many stresses that rose from this last year is financial strains. It can be hard to put any money we have towards ourselves these days, but it may be more important than ever to set aside some funds specifically to "treat ourselves." Set aside some money in the budget to take yourself out to dinner, buy a new outfit that makes you feel good about yourself, or head to a book store and pick out something that excites you. We have to be financially smart these days, but it's also important to spend some of our hard earned money on what brings us joy.
3. Try saying "no" for once So many people these days overexert themselves and have to deal with the consequences. If you're a people pleaser (like me), good luck saying no when someone asks for your help. Try to remember that it's okay to say no every now and then, and can actually be very important for your mental health. Most people will understand if you have too much on your plate and will respect your decision to pass on this particular situation.
4. Get your nails, hair, or lashes done Nothing makes me feel more confident than walking out of the hair or nail salon feeling fresh, or seeing myself for the first time right after getting lash extensions. Oftentimes things like this can get placed on the back burner for more "important things." Of course a fresh manicure should never come before paying the bills, but doing things that make you feel confident can have positive effects on the rest of your day to day activities.
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5. Meditate Meditation is no longer just for yogis and monks, but something that everyone can (and should, in my opinion) practice regularly. Simply sitting and breathing can have such a calming effect on our minds and dispositions. With meditation growing in popularity recently, there have been a number of apps that have come out specifically for that purpose. There are also tons of free YouTube meditation guides out there just waiting for us to utilize. Start meditating and see what good comes to your life.
Now more than ever we need to take care of ourselves and make our mental health a priority. You don't need to spend thousands of dollars on self care, but investing some time and funds into ourselves can go a long way with our productivity and happiness. I encourage you to try any of the suggestions above, or find your own ways of practicing self care and see how your quality of life improves.