Self care can be described as the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one's own health. It’s important that you are taking care of your body, mind, and soul every day. Needless to say, the first step to self care is doing things that benefit your basic needs physically, socially, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.
As there is a direct connection between your body and mind, you need to care for your physical body which will result in positively impacting your mood and thoughts. When caring for your body, you will start to think and feel better.
Physical self-care is much more than just the outer appearance. It’s about what you are putting in your body as fuel, the amount of sleep you are getting, daily physical activity, and how you are caring for your physical needs overall. Be sure to consider the small steps like attending doctors appointments for regular check ups and taking medicine as prescribed.
All in all, your physical self care will continue to progress as long as you are getting an adequate amount of sleep, eating whole and nutritious foods, getting daily exercise, and taking care of your physical well-being.
More than ever, socialization with friends and family is a main factor in self-care. Connection with those we value most is extremely important to our well-being. Oftentimes, it's hard to carve out time for relationships when your schedule gets jam packed. Putting time and energy towards building and maintaining relationships with others will help in this area of self-care. Getting support from those around you is always a great way to cultivate self love and self awareness which may improve your social life all together.
As each relationship is unique and people have different social needs, there isn’t a set rule book that shares the amount of time you should devote to your friends, co-workers, family, or loved ones. The best step in figuring out what is right for you is to hone in on your social needs. Consider face to face time with those you want included in your social life and ensure you are continuously nurturing the relationship for it to become long-lasting and meaningful.
Your mind is a very powerful tool. You can use it to your advantage with affirmations and positive self-talk. What you fill your mind with greatly influences your psychological health. Mental self-care involves activities that keep your mind working such as sudoku or learning a new subject that intrigues you. Reading books or watching inspiring documentaries are also ways to keep your mind sharp. In addition, this form of self-care includes things that help you stay mentally healthy. Practicing self-love, self-compassion and acceptance all help the inner dialogue to maintain a healthy state of mind. Consider taking time for yourself to be mentally stimulated and be proactive about staying mentally healthy.
Studies have shown that incorporating religion or spirituality into your life leads to a happier and healthier lifestyle. Putting efforts towards nurturing your spirit includes developing a deeper sense of meaning, understanding, or connection with the universe or your creator. Whatever this may look like for you, spiritual self-care is very important. Your options are endless but some more namely ways are meditation, attending or participating in a religious service, or praying. Consider spiritual practices that leave you feeling refreshed and fulfilled.
We all know life can throw unexpected curve balls. The truth of the matter is, we have no control over what happens but we do have control over how we cope with the difficulties. It’s crucial to have healthy ways of navigating uncomfortable emotions such as anger, anxiety, and sadness. Emotional self-care includes activities that help you acknowledge and express your feelings rather than letting them fester leading to outbursts of uncontrolled emotions. Simple ways to better your emotional state include doing a digital detox, talking to your spouse about how you feel about a certain situation, or engaging in leisurely activities that push you to process your emotions in a positive way. For a well rounded self care practice, you must include emotional self care!