What are we saying when we encourage someone to “take care”? We are saying, “Look after yourself. Make your personal well-being a priority, because I care about you.” When you think about it, it is important for all of us to “take care.”
“Self-care” means different things to different people. For many, it is a reason for a mani-pedi, a spa day or a trip with friends. Those are great. But self-care doesn’t have to be expensive, take a lot of time or be overly complicated. It just needs to become a lifelong habit.
Here are some easy and inexpensive tips for adding self-care to your daily life:
- Write down five things you are grateful for in your life. Gratitude breeds joy.
- Get out of bed 10 minutes earlier and stretch.
- Do not check email or social media for 30 minutes after getting up in the morning.
- Better yet, log off social media for a day or a week or more.
- Work up a sweat. Exercise is a tonic for the soul.
- Take a walk outside, even just five minutes helps.
- Tidy up a room, a closet or a drawer. Sounds like work, but you’ll feel great after.
- Incrementally add more vegetables to your diet.
- Meditate, either silently on your own or with a free guided app.
- Play a song you love and listen without distraction.
- Light a scented candle.
- Give a stranger a compliment. Sounds silly, but see how it feels.
- Practice positive affirmations. Remind yourself that you are worthy, just as you are.
- Sleep. Never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep or a power nap.
- Forgive. Not because the person necessarily deserves it, but because you deserve to let go of the situation.
- Mindfully enjoy a sunrise or sunset.
- Read or watch something funny. Laughter really is the best medicine.
Pick something and try it. When you find something that feels good to you, make it a habit. Self-care isn’t selfish. It is strength. Give yourself what you need so that you can live your best life, for yourself and your loved ones. You will be glad you did.