“Taking care of yourself is the most powerful way to begin to take care of others.”
As the season of giving is around us, we must also remember to take care of ourselves. We all have those friends or family or even our loved ones that we feel we might put too much thought or energy into. We might get out of balance and feel hurt or even resentful. This holiday season has a great reminder to give to yourself. Weather it be ‘me time’ to treating yourself to a spa day, hair cut or having lunch by yourself to being alone reading a good book. Sometimes we get lost in relationships and we lose ourselves, so taking a day or two to reboot and get in touch with ourselves is a great way to find a balance.
This is very hard for me. Especially since I dislike being alone. I enjoy the company of friends or mindless noise of others around me. Even giving to myself is hard sometimes, don’t get me wrong as a girl I love getting my nails done and going to get a much needed massage. But there are times I am alone to be with me and take care of me. Here are 5 strategies I found in self-care that brought happiness within myself!
1) Realize that self-care is ongoing.
Most of us think we only need self-care when we’re stressed out. Although this can be a great awakening to change our unhealthy habits and shift our mindset. Self-care is a form of healthcare and routine. Take time daily to relax and unwind, this way all the negative emotions don’t build up over time. Over time we will feel healthier and more at peace.
2) Do what you enjoy.
Let your friends and family be inspirations, not prescriptions of your self care. Don’t compare yourself to how others like to relax. We all have different ways of enjoying different mindful peacefulness. It’s ok to want to go out and be social and other times to stay in and read a book. Don’t force yourself to a time out of nothingness to relax if that doesn’t feel right for you.
3) Carve self-care into you existing schedule.
The best way to get self-care into your daily life is to make it a routine. Fit it in to your schedule. Even if you have a crazy schedule like me, I always make it a routine to meditation and say mantras in my day. Look at your schedule and see where you can fit a walk in, or a 20 mintute massage or even phone a friend while you have down time driving or waiting. Doesn’t have to be long, just a little reboot to re-energize. I just did this a few days ago and called 3 friends I haven’t talked to in a long time. It really made me feel more connected and aware of what was going on in my life. I felt like a good friend which in turn made my self-esteem higher and my self-care at ease.
4) Be Flexible and open.
Sometimes we get so fixated on doing something the same way we end up limiting our ability to see we can reach the same results in different ways. So be open! If your goal is to exercise everyday, try the gym one day and a yoga class the next and than a walk the following day. Get creating and experiment with your self-care and find what works for you!
5) Do what’s possible.
This means setting modest goals and being realistic about what you can do in that moment. If you had a goal to eat home-cooked means for a week and one night you got too tired or you had a crazy day, it’s ok to buy something to eat. Just find a healthy alternative!
Everyday will be different, bringing with a different set of moods and various responsibilities. Adapting to our needs at the moment is in itself a self-care practice. Remember self-care is supposed to be fun, enjoy time you make for yourself. Don’t take it so seriously! Appreciate the journey to a healthier and happier mind, body and spirit!