Self Care Doesn’t Have To Be Hard: 12 Self Care Habits You Should Adopt
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So what is self care? The literal definition of “self “ according to Webster dictionary is the union of elements (such as body, emotions, thoughts, and sensations) that constitute the individuality and identity of a person. Essentially, your mind, body, spirit and experiences all contribute to who you are. Self care means the provision of what is necessary for the health, welfare, maintenance, and protection of someone or something.
Adopting good self care habits can help you:
- Manage stress and anxiety
- Be more productive and spark and nurture creativity
- Reduce and prevent disease in the body, like lower blood pressure, inflammation etc
- Boost confidence and self esteem
- Feel good! Just feel good!
The easiest way to start adopting good self care habits is to develop a self care routine. A self care routine is really just a promise you make to yourself to take time out of your day just for you. Whether you take a few minutes, hours or have a whole self care day doesn’t matter. Do what feels right for you.
Feeling stressed? Take a few minutes and do some deep breathing or book a spa day. It can be as big or as small as you want. The important thing is to make time and let your mind, body and spirit guide you towards the stress relieving activity that you need in that moment. Self care doesn’t have to be hard.
Here are 12 Self Care Habits You Should Adopt Today.
TAKE CARE OF YOUR SKIN
One of my favourite things to do on my self care day is a relaxing diy at home facial. I cleanse and steam my face, do extractions, add a mask, toner, serum and moisturizer. That’s usually the day I wash my hair, give myself a nice body scrub and shave. I like to set the mood too! Light a candle in my bathroom, burn some incense and play some music. Taking care of your skin is important for a lot of reasons but the one I want to focus on is confidence and self-esteem. When your skin is feeling good and doing well, you feel good about yourself. Find the products that work for your skin type and start incorporating them into your daily skin self care routine. What you put on your body is just as important as what you put in it. Your skin is the largest organ of the body. So the ingredients in your skin care matter. Take a FREE skin care quiz at True Botanicals, known for their cruelty-free, organic and sustainable products and let them tailor a skincare routine to help you achieve and maintain healthy, radiant skin.
MAKE TIME FOR YOUR HOBBIES
Finding time to do things (outside of work) that you enjoy is a very important part of self care. Whether it’s painting, baking or maybe you like to collect rocks, if it brings joy, comfort and happiness in your life then you should engage in those activities more often. If this pandemic has taught us anything, it’s to not take things for granted and to stop putting off fun until some distant time in the future when you’re retired. Start living your life already! That dance class you've been wanting to sign up for but you keep putting it off because you don't have "time", SIGN UP!
TAKE YOUR VITAMINS
Whether you eat all organic foods, cook all of your meals or not, getting all the vitamins, minerals and life sustaining nutrients that you need for your body to function optimally can be challenging. It’s almost impossible in this day and age to get everything we need solely from the food we eat. Supplementing helps to make sure that you do. A person in their 20s is going to have different dietary needs than a person in their 50s, men versus women, active versus more sedentary individuals and the list goes on. At the very least make sure that you are taking a high value multivitamin every day. I take the Webber Naturals Most Complete Multivitamin for women. You only have to take one capsule per day and it lasts for 3 months.
Meditation is another self care habit to start TODAY! It’s a great tool to help manage stress, bring awareness to your mind and body, calm yourself, the list goes on. Best part is meditation doesn’t have to be hard. Often we complicate it. There isn’t a right or wrong position, you can mediate for hours or just a few minutes and you don’t have to have a dedicated space to meditate. All of these can evolve with time and as you begin create that spiritual space for your meditation practice.
Below is an easy way to help you learn how to start meditating today
Journaling is a great self care tool to add to your self care routine. Some people journal every morning and/or night to help them start the day and reflect at the end of the day. I don’t journal every single day but I keep a journal by my bed so that if any ideas come to me in the middle of the night, I can jot them down so that I’m not awake worrying that I’m going to forget. It's excellent for dealing with life’s ups and downs because honestly sometimes you don’t have someone to talk to or you’re just not ready to open up about it. Writing it down is key! Bottling up emotions can manifest in the body as disease and discomfort and we don’t want that.
During the lockdown we have added going for walks as a daily pastime because there is literally nothing else to do. Well at least not here in Toronto Canada. However walking is a great self care habit to adopt. I live downtown and one of my favourite things to do is going on night walks in the city. The city is so calm and peaceful and I love the bright city lights. Add my favourite boba tea and it’s one of the ways that I destress at the end of a long day.
DRINK MORE WATER
I know, I know. You hear it every time. Every health and wellness guru or expert will tell you to drink water because it is essential for everything. Your body is made up of 60% water by the way, so it's kind of a big deal. According to research, the average person can survive about three days without water compared to food which is ten to fourteen days. Needless to say water is kind of important. I like to add Emergen-C Orange Vitamin C to my water. They come in different flavours and having a packet daily gives me a much needed immunity boost. Try it!!
GET MORE SLEEP
Getting more sleep should be added to your self care routine. The amount of hours of sleep you need everyday is going to be different for every person. I personally feel very groggy when I get more than 7 hours while others need 8 hours to function. Some of the benefits of getting more sleep include:
- Reducing stress
- Improves mood
- Get sick less
- Mental clarity and health
- Helps you achieve your fitness goals
Sleep isn't an area you want to neglect. Your body repairs, restores and resets itself while you sleep. So if you find yourself getting sick a lot, struggling to reach your fitness goals or forgetting things........get more sleep.
TAKE A DAY OFF
For some this may be very easy but for others it can be difficult. Entrepreneurs, business owners and those of us with very demanding careers are constantly working, working on something, attending meetings etc. So sometimes we look up and we’ve been just working and working non stop or with just little breaks. It’s important to take time away from work and spend that time with yourself, doing some of the things you like and hanging out with friends and family. Although during this time there isn’t as much to do, you still need at least one day where you take a break from work so that you can enjoy the fruits of your labour.
GET A MASSAGE
I encourage my clients to develop a self care routine and add habits that make them feel good physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Everyone’s routine is going to be different so you really need to listen to what your body needs. Massage therapy is a great self care habit to adopt. Getting massages regularly helps to prevent and reduce your chances of repetitive strain type injuries, helps reduce tension and stress in the body and mind and it just feels amazing!At Aligned One Wellness our Registered Massage Therapists focus on the whole person, tailoring your massage therapy session to your physical needs but also on a deeper level. Using energy work, aromatherapy, colour and sound therapy to treat you on a multidimensional level.
TAKE REGULAR SOCIAL MEDIA BREAKS
So I'm currently on a social media hiatus. I haven’t posted any videos or content since December 2020. No real plan, I just knew I needed a break and I needed it now. Social media is a part of my business but I’m more so talking about taking a break from social media personally from time to time as a good self care habit to adopt. We can get caught up in the seemingly perfect lives and careers of people and start comparing ourselves to that. It’s not realistic. Not to stay that everything on social media is fake. However even the person with the most perfectly curated feed on Instagram has bad days. But we don’t see that. Then we get depressed or feel inadequate because our lives don’t look like that. This time I’ve been away from social media has been extremely therapeutic. I’ve had more time to focus on taking care of me, figure out what I want my life to look like on a daily basis and what truly inspires me to create. So that when I start posting again, it feels like less of a chore. An easy way to take a break from social media is to just not check it for 24 hours. Turn off all notifications, live YOUR life and be grateful for all that you have and achieved.
SPEND TIME ALONE
Spending time alone is so important. When you’re spending time alone it gives you the opportunity to act, be and do without influence or opinions from others. When was the last time you did something and didn’t ask a friend, family member or spouse for their input? Where was the last place you went to by yourself? I’m an extroverted introvert so although I’m very friendly and do well amongst others, I need daily alone time to recharge. I believe that everyone should travel alone at least once in their lives. It’s such a beautiful experience to have and you get to do things that you may have opted out of because you were travelling with others. Self care should be looked at as a necessity. The same way you get up every day and brush your teeth and take a shower, you should have a daily self care practice. Try adopting some or all of these self care habits into your daily routine and see how awesome you feel.