What Is Self-Care?
Before performing self-care, it is necessary to know what exactly self-care is, as well as what it is not. Raphailia Michael, MA explains that self-care refers to any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. It is “something that refuels us, rather than takes from us.” What is crucial to understand is that self-care isn’t selfish. Taking care of others and being your best self is impossible without taking care of yourself first and doing what you need to do to stay mentally, spiritually, and physically healthy.
When trying to decide whether or not an activity is considered self-care, think about how it will make you feel in the long-run. Quick fixes that may seem relaxing in the moment, but will cause you stress or anxiety in the long-run, are not self-care. To truly be considered self-care, an activity must make you feel happier, calmer, or more mentally healthy both in the present moment and in the future.
Why Is Self-Care Important?
Self-care is the key to living a balanced and healthy life. Self-care improves our mood, reduces stress and anxiety, and helps to strengthen our relationships. Overall, self-care allows us to feel our best both physically and mentally, which means we are more resilient and more able to handle any stressors we may face in life. It also ensures we are fully present and able to care for any friends or family that may need us.
Strategies For Staying On Track
Remembering to take care of ourselves can be challenging, especially when life gets busy. Here are three strategies from Psych Central and Elemental to help keep you on track:
- Keep It Simple: Self-care should be viewed as something that’s always accessible when you need it, rather than something unattainable that you have to pursue. So, be sure to choose self-care activities that are simple and easily doable.
- Choose Sustainability: When choosing self-care activities, select something that isn’t too expensive or difficult, such as writing in a journal. That way you can easily continue to do it throughout the years.
- Plan Ahead Of Time: Taking care of yourself is an active choice, therefore, you need to treat it as such. You need to actively plan out your self-care activities, especially when you are first starting out. Try writing them down on the calendar or announcing them to friends and family, that way you are more committed.
Try challenging yourself to a full month of self-care and keep track of how you feel each week. You will be surprised just how much better you feel physically and mentally! To learn more, click here!