First things first, let’s define what self-care really is. Many will have you believe that if you aren’t taking time to put a mud pack on your face or do a mini-mani on yourself, then you are not engaging in self-care activities.
The truth is that self-care is so much more than this. Sure, pampering yourself can make you feel good, and we all want to feel good. But self-care is about creating a life that you enjoy, a life that you don’t constantly feel like you need a break from.
1. Make your bed
If you do this just after waking up, it will give you a sense of completion, one thing ticked off your list. Even this small act will help bolster your self-efficacy and small acts build up to making us feel better about our lives in general.
2. Drink some water
Boring, right? But you have no idea how good that glass of water will make you feel! The first signs of dehydration are fatigue, irritability, and loss of concentration. Before thinking there is something wrong with you or seeking out more complex answers, try hydrating and feel the difference.
3. Eat some plant-based foods at every meal
Self-care is about building habits and there is no better health habit than eating more fruits and vegetables. Many of us are walking around with sub-clinical nutrient deficiencies and this can make you feel pretty rotten. By upping your fruits, veggies, and plant-based foods on the regular, you will naturally start taking
4. Start journaling
It doesn’t have to be long winded or the next best-selling novel but journaling regularly will help you understand your reactions and emotions better. Why not start by literally writing, "One line a day."
This will help you get in the habit of connecting with yourself on paper, and eventually lead to deeper conversations with yourself. Over time, you'll get to understand who you are on a more intimate level.
5. Figure your trigger
We are all stimulated by our environment in different ways (positive and negative), some through sights, sounds or even touch. Figure out which overstimulates you and then reduce your exposure to this daily. Meanwhile, increase your exposure to the ones that calm you.
If you can do this, you will find yourself being naturally more productive, and happier, too.
6. Get some vitamin D
Vitamin D is currently a very hot topic. It has far reaching implications with regards to our physical and mental health. You need about 15 minutes of direct sunlight (on a large portion of your body) 2-3 times a week to get enough vitamin D.
If you live in the very northern parts of the world where there is little direct sunlight, then you may want to chat to your doctor about a supplement.
7. Go for a walk
It is crazy how talking a short walk can clear the cobwebs from your mind. Not only can it get our heart racing (depending on how far and fast you walk) but getting out and about will release some feel-good endorphins.
8. Take a deep breath
We all have to breathe, but taking some deliberate and deeps breaths in and out can be a form of meditation that will hep you to feel more grounded and in touch with yourself. Often, life feels like it is getting the better of us, when the reality is that we have the power to stop and breath and decide on our next port of call.