3 Tips for Enhanced Self Care
1. Time Management
While time management sounds like the antithesis of self-care for some of us, it might be the most important part of a healthy self care routine. Between working a full-time job (or 2), taking care of the house and taking care of our families and friends, it sometimes seems like we simply don’t have the time to take care of ourselves. It’s even more difficult now that many of us are wearing the hat of teacher with digital learning.
However, sit down and take a look at how and to what you are allocating your time in a "normal" day. One way to do this is to write it all down (or type, if you prefer a spreadsheet), along with how many hours you are putting into each activity. Then, add that time up. Is there extra time left in your day? What do you think you are typically be doing with this “extra” time and can it be used to take a bath, read a chapter of a book or go on a run? Knowing how and when you will be able to get your self-care in helps ensure that you actually get to do it.
Exercising is obviously a major component of keeping our physical bodies healthy. Because exercising releases endorphins, dopamine and serotonin, it also plays an integral part in our mood and mind health, making it uniquely important in self care.
Starting an exercise routine can seem like a large undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be. Picking an activity that you enjoy will make it easier to commit to the activity. If you enjoy the outdoors, you could walk, hike or climb. Maybe you prefer to dance or kayak or ride a bike.
You also don’t need to dedicate all of your self-care time to exercise. For example, if you like to do yoga, you could start off with short 20-30 minute videos and work your way up to longer sessions. Maybe you have more time on your days off and do a little bit more on those days. Maybe you consult a physical trainer or a nutritionist to help. Whatever you decide, choose a plan that is going to work for you (even if you have a try a few different things before you find a routine that works).
3. At-Home Mini Spa/Moment of Relaxation
While the previous 2 components of self care might have you feeling like you’re working for it, an at-home spa treatment might be more widely identifiable as self care.
Relaxing and allowing our bodies to rejuvenate is extremely important. For some of us, this might be a bubble bath or a bath bomb. For others, it might be a moment of relaxation, such as a candlelit dinner, a nap or maybe even a pre-roll with a sunrise view.
While this is the most identifiable as self care on this list, it can be the most difficult part of self-care to justify if you're accustomed to taking care of others before yourself. BUT, by nourishing our minds and bodies, we are able to better support those we care about. Setting aside time for a weekly relaxation regimen- even if only for 20 minutes- can give us a chance to recharge and refresh
Who knows- maybe you have time for 2 mini spa sessions each week after you review your time management!