I wanted to take some time today to offer self-care tips for when life gets hard because that’s the time when self-care is the most important and when we usually let it fall by the wayside. I know how busy, and chaotic life can get at times, so today I wanted to share how I engage in self care in my personal life. I try to engage in one of the following ideas below on a daily if not weekly basis. Engaging in self care on an on-going basis really helps to reduce stress levels, not just when stuff hits the fan. Let’s dive in
Unplug: In a world where we seem to be attached to our phones, social media platforms etc. Taking a break from your phone and giving your mind a break can be refreshing.
Say No: If you feel that saying yes to projects or commitments that you are not in the space to carry out would add more to your plate, simply say no.
EXERCISE: Just as sleep is important, so is exercise. For some, exercise is only about preventative health measures, but for others like myself it is also critical to my mental health. I am no longer using it as an escape, but as something that starts my day off on a positive note. I am able to channel whatever negative thoughts and feelings I have into an activity that improves my overall strength and clarity and leaves me feeling better than when I went in.
Go to a coffee shop and order your favorite drink: There’s something about ordering an almond latte from my favorite cafe that does something for me.
See a therapist: There’s nothing like investing in your emotional health. It may be pricey, but it’s beyond worth it. Don’t be embarrassed about going to therapy either. There’s power and strength in feeding yourself emotionally to live your best life.
Pray: My faith is the most important thing to me. It’s a driving force in how I live my life, and how I treat people. Praying, cultivating a personal relationship with my lord is a perpetual thing for me, and it honestly, just helps.
Talk to a close trusted friend or family member: Use discernment about who you share with and what you share. Again, why number 5 is so important.
Make a dope playlist: Whatever speaks to your soul, sign into your iTunes, Spotify or music gallery and curate a self-care play list.
WRITE: Even if you’re not a writer, get a notebook or journal to write about what is going on. If you are anything like me, your mind is racing a million miles a minute and you have a tendency to overthink every scenario. Spend a little time each day writing about your feelings, what is going on at that moment, and whatever you feel compelled to put on paper. Don’t worry about anyone reading it and just write. Even if you think that writing will be useless, do it anyway. I’m always surprised at what comes out when I start writing and the amount of free space in my brain after I am done.
FEEL WHAT YOU ARE FEELING: This is one of the most important self-care tips. For many, many, many years I didn’t know how to feel my feelings. I ran from them at every chance I got because I was so uncomfortable. This led me to using anything I could to mask them. When I realized that I had to stop running, I had to learn what feelings, and how to specifically identify them. I know that any negative feeling is uncomfortable. No one welcomes sadness or pain with open arms, screaming “I CAN’T WAIT TO FEEL YOU!” The tough thing is, though, that we have to. By going through those feelings we come to terms with the situation, we learn from it, and we often come out stronger on the other side. The process is often the most painful, but not going through it can actually draw it out much longer.
These are just a few things I do when I need to refresh and take some time for me. Hope you found a thing or two on this list that you’d like to try. If you found this helpful, and think a friend would love it, please feel free to share!