As you may’ve noticed, health and wellness are MY JAM, and after a lifetime of neglecting myself they are very, very important to me. The one thing that I’ve learned in my quest for them is that there’s no finish line.
Health and wellness are states that are obtained through simplistic living, healthy lifestyle changes and continuous growth. I don’t even care that I sound like an asshole here- this shit is TRUE.
One thing that I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is self care.
As a Mother, I’m up to my tits with responsibility for the wellbeing of others and so chronically short on time that I have incredible difficulty remembering to take care of myself properly. When this happens, my ability to be the parent and person that I want to be is a lot fucking harder.
I’ve found that the following ways of practicing self care daily take very little time, are easy, and work for making me feel more human and less like a dried up sad husk of a person.
6 Ways to to Fit Self Care into Your Busy Daily Routine
Create A Ritual from Something you Enjoy
For example, if you have a tea or coffee before you start your day, try and make that activity as relaxing and as enjoyable as possible. Try and be present in the moment while you’re doing this. Your kids gonna scream either way. You’re zen, baby. The key is mindfulness.
I have 3 kids, but I find time to have a tea every morning, and despite the hectic business of trying not to lose my everloving shit I try my best to take a few moments to just focus on the feeling of the cup in my hands, or the patterns in the tea when I splash in the creamer. It takes a lot of practice, but if you become good at this trick you can begin to feel more grounded even with just a few stolen moments here and there.
Turning off electronics such as the TV, computer or cell phone can be an incredibly powerful method of attempting to be alone with yourself and your thoughts.
With technology today, it seems that we’re never truly alone, or able to really complete a thought without interruption. Additionally, even things as seemingly mundane as the news can have negative impacts on mental well being when there is a clear bias towards reporting about negative events (and it seems that there’s no fucking shortages of these!).
The rise of social media can create situations where we spend unnecessary time and energy comparing ourselves to others, and consuming a completely unrealistic and totally filtered view of the world.
An essential part of self care is to protect your own mental health, and try to limit your exposure to things which may cause distress. Now to be clear- I’m not suggesting that you don’t stay current with news or socialize with others online, but it is important to take little breaks to focus on your own thoughts and practice mindfulness.
Be Your Own Best Friend
This is something that I’ll probably struggle with for as long as I live. As someone who has struggled with anxiety, I tend to strive for perfection that I would never in a million years expect from any other person.
This results in a situation where you become a “toxic” influence on yourself. And there is no way to get away from yourself. So this manner of thinking leaves your mind absolutely flooded with negativity, which diverts your energy and mental resources from bigger (and more productive) things.
An essential part of self care is to replace the negative self talk you have with positive or more realistic thoughts. The method that I’ve used to combat this is to apply my negative self talk towards others instead of myself. For example, if I’m thinking “Everybody is judging me and thinking I am unworthy because of my appearance” (and yes, I have actually had ridiculous thoughts like these), I turn it around and think “How many people can I think of that I judge and view as unworthy based on appearance?”.
Because it’s bullshit.
Discover Your own Self Worth
Throughout my life if I had any destructive habits (smoking was a good example), I always found it easier to try and make self improvements (like quitting smoking) because it would please other people rather than because it would improve my own life.
For example, whenever I would start to eat healthy or try to get into better shape, I found it easier to keep it up when others were around rather than just for me when only I would know.
The key to changing this pattern was to find my own self worth.
I had to make the realization that doing it for me was just as good (if not better) than doing it for anybody else.
I have finally come to a place where I realize that taking care of my own health and wellness is a worthy investment, because I’m fucking worth it.
Prioritize your Physical Well Being
This is the boring part that we all know, but one of the most important things for self care is to make sure that you are resting when you need to rest, eating good food which is healthy for your body, and getting some time to get some exercise and fresh air.
My own motivation for getting proper exercise used to be to lose weight, however after I adopted a healthier lifestyle and tried to get at least 10000 steps per day, my mental health and overall well being improved so drastically that even just memories of this time is very motivating for keeping it up in the future.
Reconnect with Nature
Breathe the air, get your hands dirty, or explore the natural world with your crazy ass kids.
There’s an absolute wonder in the world around us if we only take the time to enjoy it, and doing so can provide a peacefulness and value that we all could use.
Although it can be hard to find the time to practice self care, it is a worthy investment of your time and energy, and can ultimately make your life run more smoothly in the future.
How do you practice self care?
Let us know in the comments below!