WHAT IS SELF CARE?

When many of us think of self care, we tend to think of spa days and pampering ourselves with bubble baths, indulging in our favorite foods & binge watching our favorite TV shows. (Sounds lovely right?) But, while these activities can still be considered self care, the reality is that it is in fact much deeper than that.

Self Care can be described as everything we mindfully do to ensure that we are catering to our mental, physical and emotional health, to prevent even the *possibility* of burn out. 

Self care is something that tends to refuel us, rather than take from us.

At the very core, it is about nurturing the relationship and connection you have with yourself. The most important relationship you will ever have in your life!

WHY IS SELF CARE IMPORTANT?

Self care is a necessity. 

Habitually making the effort to incorporate ways to nurture and take care of yourself daily, is very vital for your well being, even if they are “small” or simple.

It is far too easy for us to neglect taking care of ourselves when we’re busy or overwhelmed. Have you ever thought about the effects of not making your needs a priority? Well for one, you cannot give to others what you do not have yourself! 

Some may misconstrue self care for being selfish, but it is far from that. Matter of fact, it’s actually the opposite! When you are taking time out to make sure your needs are fulfilled, you’re not only considering your needs alone, but you are also replenishing yourself so that you can be the best you & function at your highest & happiest potential for the people you love.

There are multiple types of self care practices and depending on the day, you may favor more than others. ALL are equally important and I believe that you should practice a little bit of each as much as possible.

I prefer to break down my ideas of self care into different categories to help me understand my needs, what I am lacking and how I can practice nurturing them. 

(TIP: The key to self-care is that it should be something that you actually enjoy doing.  If it starts to feel like a chore, then it may start adding to your stress levels, rather than reducing them.)

Below are 8 types of self care, and multiple ways you can practice each! (:

  1. Physical Self-Care:

Taking care of our physical being is equally important as taking care of our mental wellbeing. When we tend to mention self care, quite often the physical aspect of it always seems to pop up. You might think there’s nothing fun about going to the gym, but that’s far too narrow a way of thinking about physical self-care. Here’s a few other ideas below..

IDEAS TO PRACTICE:

  • Getting the right amount of sleep (atleast 8 hours)
  • Yoga
  • Going for a run
  • Eating more fruits and veggies 
  • Going to zumba 
  • Applying a face mask
  • Resting when your body needs it 
  • Going for a bike ride 
  • Drinking more water 
  1. Emotional Self-Care:

Emotional self care is about caring for your emotional needs by identifying what it is you’re feeling, and then moving forward in a way that honors yourself and those emotions. The best self advice is to acknowledge your emotions head on, this actually helps with stress.You may sometimes feel tempted to push down feelings like sadness or anger, but it’s important to process your emotions. Feel them, accept them and move on.

IDEAS TO PRACTICE

  • Maintain healthy boundaries – It’s okay to say no.
  • Practice Journaling : Write down your emotions and what you’re feeling to help you vent, process, and understand them better.
  • Replace negative self talk, with positive self talk.
  • Practice and express gratitude. Focus on everything you’re thankful for.
  • Say Affirmations to yourself daily, or make your own affirmation cards.
  • Practice mindfulness and meditation – learn how to become more present and mindful.
  • Get creative! Express your emotions through art, writing, cooking, music, etc.
  1. Spiritual Self-Care:

There are many benefits you can receive from practicing spiritual self care, such as clarity about your self-identity, increased inner peace & calmness, improved communication and connection with others, and a feeling of purpose and serenity. This self-care doesn’t necessarily have to relate to religion, although it can be religious for some people. Practicing spiritual self care not only leads to greater inner peace, but it can help us live in greater alignment with our core values.

IDEAS TO PRACTICE: 

  • Spend time in nature 
  • Sit in Silence 
  • Donate to a charity or a cause that you believe in.
  • Pray 
  • Be intentional with how you share your energy.
  • Burning sage or incense
  1. Mental/Intellectual Self-Care:

Intellectual self care involves being responsible for your own personal growth & is also the art of practising mindfulness and having a positive mindset about life in general. Your mindset is everything. It also addresses your inner ‘thinker’, and by cultivating a healthy intellect you can expand your knowledge and mindset. It’s an important step to take when keeping all aspects of yourself in the best condition because a healthy mind is the foundation of a healthy self!

IDEAS TO PRACTICE:

  • Try to learn something new everyday.
  • Read more books to broaden your horizon both intellectually and creatively.
  • Listen to podcasts
  • Take a course on something that interests you
  • Discuss topics & opinions with other people. Hearing another person’s POV can widen your mindset and you can learn something new.
  1. Sensory Self-Care:

Sensory self care is all about catering to your 5 senses, sight, smell, touch, taste and sound. When you are able to tune into the details of the sensations all around you, it’s easier to live in the present moment and lower your stress levels. You can let go of resentments from the past and anxieties about the future.

IDEAS TO PRACTICE

  • Cuddling up under a soft blanket.
  • Burning your favorite scented candle 
  • Take a relaxing bath with your favorite scents 
  • Indulge in your favorite food
  • Listening to soothing music
  • Spending time in nature and enjoying the weather
  1. Social Self-Care:

Socializing is essential to human fulfillment. We like to feel connected to others. This type of self care may look different depending on whether you’re an introvert or extrovert. However, connecting with other people is necessary for happiness for a large diversity of people. Having a support system, and nourishing these relationships can be an example of this type of self-care.

IDEAS TO PRACTICE:

  • Connect on social media 
  • Call a friend or relative to catch up with them
  • Laugh. It’s such a cliche, but laughter truly is the best medicine.
  • Join clubs, Facebook Groups or organizations where you can meet new people 
  1. Environment Self-Care:

Environment self care involves taking care of your personal surroundings and occupying pleasant, stimulating environments that support your wellbeing.

IDEAS TO PRACTICE:

  • Organizing a space 
  • Cleaning up your room and making your bed up every morning. 
  • Practicing aromatherapy in your space by using a diffuser, or lighting a candle with essential oils.
  • Decorating your space to ensure maximum comfort 
  1. Financial Self- Care: 

Financial self care entails taking steps to live with in your financial means. Practicing financial self care can help you improve your relationship with money and establish healthy money habits. 

IDEAS TO PRACTICE:

  • Create a budget & stick to it
  • Keep tabs on your daily income and expenses
  • Start a saving account & start saving for an emergency
  • Live within your means.
  • Set aside a certain amount of money each paycheck.

What type of Self-Care Do You Feel Like You Need The Most At This Moment? Let Me Know Below!