As the name suggests, self-care involves recognizing your emotional and mental needs and finding healthy ways to meet those needs. The purpose of self-care is to seek out activities that nourish your holistic wellness — mental, physical, and emotional health. Practicing self-care can reduce anxiety, create a heightened sense of self-awareness, improve your mood, and make you the best version of yourself for your relationships and the people around you. Keep reading to discover five essential activities that you can include in your self-care routine, or use to create one if you haven’t one already in place.
1. Get out of town.
Trips don’t have to be scheduled for the times when you’re feeling burnt out, stressed, or overwhelmed. Taking some time away can help you feel renewed and perhaps even offer you a new perspective on life. Additionally, a self-care trip doesn’t have to be expensive or to a faraway destination. You can easily take a drive to the next town over and take in new attractions that are a change of scenery for you. If you live in Oregon for instance, you can drive down to a site for shore eyes and visit The Mill Casino on Coos Bay, and allow yourself to be taken in by the beauty of the scenic coastlines, while you vacation in one of their cozy rentals.
2. Care for your mental health.
One of the most important aspects of self-care is recognizing what you’re feeling and learning how to cope with your emotions. An effective way of doing this is by seeking therapy. Here are some helpful tips on how to find a therapist:
- Research their credentials and experience
- Explore insurance coverage and payment options
- Seek referrals and recommendations
- Look for therapists who specialize in or have treated patients with your specific needs
- Consider the therapist’s approach to therapy
- Understand what you want – and don’t want – in a therapist
Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to get started on your search for the right mental health professional. When you’ve narrowed down your list of candidates, contact them via their website or give their office a call. If everything seems right (remember to trust your intuition!), go ahead and make an appointment for a full counseling session, then evaluate how you feel.
3. Practise good sleep hygiene.
Sleep hygiene means creating a daily routine and relaxing room environment that keeps you free from distractions. Good sleep hygiene will contribute to peaceful, uninterrupted sleep. Some tips that can help you develop good sleep hygiene include:
- Having a nightly sleep routine – This involves having a designated bedtime and wake-up time which ensures that you go to bed at the same time each night and that you wake up at the same time each morning.
- Developing healthy daily habits – Limit your alcohol intake, reduce your daily dose of caffeine, avoiding eating late, or right before bed, and finally, limit the use of electronics in bed.
- Optimize your bedroom – Creating an environment conducive for sleep is the basis of good sleep hygiene. To do this, consider buying a comfortable pillow and mattress, setting a comfortable room temperature, unplugging your electronics, blocking out excessive light, and using sleep aids like calming apps, scents, or ASMR.
4. Make sure to exercise daily.
We all know exercise is good for us, but do we really know how good it is? Daily exercise can help you both physically and mentally, boosting your mood and reducing stress and anxiety levels, not to mention helping you shed any extra weight.
Of course, it might be hard to go to the gym every day, so try to incorporate other exercises, such as walking, tennis, or yoga, which you may be able to fit into your schedule more easily. The most important thing is to create a routine that works for you.
5. Treat yourself and feel pampered.
Sometimes, you just have to treat yourself to some pampering! It’s so important to take time for yourself, and this can easily be done by going to the nearest spa and selecting a few treatments. If you’re feeling tight and your muscles ache, choose a massage. If you’re feeling tired and sluggish, a facial can brighten up your complexion. Or, if you want a pop of color, a manicure and pedicure can work wonders for your self-esteem. To find a quality nail salon in your area, simply search “pedicure near me” for multiple options.
Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be feeling refreshed and renewed in no time at all.
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