The Importance of Self-Care
"Inside a healthy body, there is a strong mentality"
It is essential to practice self-care as a way of life. Exercising for a month and watching your diet for weeks won't work if you don't form the habits to make it sustainable. Surely you've heard the term "self-care" more than once, but do you know what it is and what it entails?
Why Self Care is so Important?
Self-care, as it is understood today, is a set of actions that a person performs to improve their health intentionally. This includes working on both physical and psychological needs, always from the perspective of having a positive personal development.
In addition to improving quality of life, good self-care has a myriad of other benefits:
- Improve resistance to disease
- Quicker recovery from temporary ailments
- Improved self-esteem
- Better productivity
The common excuse to ignore self-care is the time commitment that it can require. There are many types of self-care ranging in difficulty and planning, all of which can benefit our overall sense of wellness. The key to self-care is to find activities that give you energy and fit within your schedule. The benefits of self-care can be felt pretty quickly, which makes it easier to stay motivated and keep those habits as a part of your daily routine.
Below we'll discuss some categories of self-care along with ways that to practice them.
When you think about practicing sensory self-care, consider all of your senses. Everyone responds differently to each sense, so it's important to find what works best for you.
- Lie down, close your eyes, and listen to soothing music
- Try taking baths with essential oils
- Try meditating by focusing solely on one item (example being the flame of a lit candle)
- Spend some time outdoors and focus on breathing in the fresh air
In terms of emotional self-care, it's important to always stay present and embrace the emotions that we're feeling. When we bottle up our emotions, that's where stresses form. Learning how to handle our feeling and face them head-on is how we learn to accept them and move on with our lives. This type of practice can be hard at first, but the more attention put towards it, the easier it becomes.
- Find things that make you laugh
- Learn to compliment yourself
- Remember to smile when your not feeling your best
- Make time to spend with loved ones
- Try journaling
Spiritual self-care is less about believing in a higher power as much as it is about figuring out what your values are and what truly matters to YOU. Getting in touch with your spirit and what drives you will be the key to unlocking spiritual self-care.
- Yoga or meditation
- Spend time in nature and appreciate your surroundings
- Find a few affirmations that give you a sense of empowerment and purpose
- Try creating something whether it be through writing, music, painting, etc.
Physical self-care is also one of the important pillars of overall wellness. This aspect of self-care is perhaps the most effective way to let out stress in a positive way. To begin honing in on physical self-care, you don't have to jump right on a treadmill. Simply putting a focus on what gives us confidence and learning to love the bodies that we're in has tremendous effects on our health.
- Get some new clothing that makes you feel good. Wear it to work and see how it makes you feel.
- Try eating healthier and focus on the differences you notice in your energy, skin, and mood
- Try a new sport or physical activity. If you get energy from being around other people, try to join a social club that focuses on that activity
For those who are focused on careers, professional self-care is essential to a healthy body and mind. Being able to enjoy the work you do and the people you do it with will bring a greater sense of purpose to your day.
- Take time to get to know your co-workers
- Make your workspace express who you are. It should be personal and feel like yours
- Balance your personal life with professional. Don't forget to take breaks! Studies show that taking breaks during the day can improve work performance, focus, and boost energy