You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.
If you haven’t heard of the term “self-care”… you might be living under a rock. It has skyrocketed in popularity, especially with the younger crowds. If you talk to anyone, they could have a different idea of what self-care could mean to them: coffee dates and brunch, or soaking in a bathtub with a good book. Maybe even taking a trip, or trying something totally new, like a rock-climbing class or goat yoga. (Yep, that is a real thing. Look it up!)
Whatever you decide to do, self-care is a pretty important thing, especially for the year 2020. We need a little bit of self-loving for ourselves to get out of the rut, and I would love to recommend to all of you my favorite forms of self-care. So grab your notes, pull up Amazon, or snag yourself a goat, and let’s jump into this list!
This is a great way to start this list because it can cover a broad stroke of things. When is the last time that you did a hobby at home? Maybe you love to read or strum along to a guitar. Maybe you are really into hiking, or just like to bike around your neighborhood. It doesn’t matter what the activity is, but if you haven’t started one, I really recommend it. Hobbies are great to strengthen your mind, body, and spirit. And the best part, it can be free or really cheap, at least to start with. You can find a lot of things second-hand at thrift stores, like that guitar or a bike. Start easy on your hikes and go around a local park or local trails and wear a pair of tennis shoes that you don’t mind getting a little dirty. You can get a library card to check out books for free. As you enjoy your hobbies more and more, you can invest more into it. Out of all of my suggestions today, this one is probably my favorite.
I know, I know. This one is almost impossible to do, especially for this year. But hear me out. Stress can really take a toll on your body. It disrupts your sleep, can mess up your eating habits/digestion, cause unhealthy habits, and put a damper on your mental abilities. It’s often a hidden little trigger, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. Because we live in such a fast pace society, often we don’t even realize when it is about to strike. In a weird way, we should be thankful for these crazy times, because it can affect anyone of any age, sex, background, you name it. People are a bit more understanding of why you need to take a personal day from work, or why you turn your phone’s ringer on silence for a while. Sit down and think of what causes you stress, whether it’s from work, a family member, chores/responsibilities. Rearrange your life’s schedule to take breaks from these triggers, your mind and body will thank you.
When you hear of self-care, most people think of binging a Netflix series or laying in bed all day. And for a good reason! Sometimes you just need a day to do the exact opposite of what is expected out of you. Now for some, this isn’t a great option. Some people just love to be busy, and it mentally hurts when they are not productive. But it really is important for you to take a day off. You could fill it up with a hobby, or maybe volunteering? Or you can sit on your couch with no pants on and scroll for a couple of hours on TikTok, it’s up to you boo. I’m a little bit of both, to be honest.
Interact With Your Favorite Humans
Who is that one person that you could talk to for hours on end? The one who knows exactly what to say to make you feel better, or they know your favorite things are without asking. I’m sure someone popped inside your head there. Spend some time with that person. It could be your mom, your partner, a best friend, or whoever you want it to be. Humans are social creatures, we need at least a few people in our lives that can make a difference. (Yes, even you introverts need them!)
Find an activity to do together, or at least Skype or call them if you are socially distancing. Talk for hours on end or sign up for one of those baking classes that will serve you wine at the same time. Especially right now, you need some social interaction at some point.
This is one that I find myself struggling with. I will hopefully have another post up soon that will go into further detail about it, but the basic fact is: Appreciate what you have going for in your life and focus on the present. Don’t keep yourself up at night worrying about the silly thing you said last week, and don’t worry yourself about the future. Right now, focus on yourself and how you can make yourself an even better person. If you are a natural-born worrier like myself, this can be a challenge. But if I can do it, you totally can too!
Look, life is really weird right now. I find myself worrying about things I never had to before. My hands have never been so dry from the over-use of hand sanitizer in my life. I worry about my mom and how her job as a nurse could affect my entire family. I worry about my siblings and how they are going back to school in a few weeks, and I know that a bunch of 13 to 18-year-olds are not going to socially distance at their school. I hope that the precautions I’m taking at work will be enough to prevent me from getting sick, and I obsessively scrub down the counters with disinfectant wipes and remind myself to stay six feet away from people, because a lot of my patrons certainly do not remember.
But even with all of this crashing down on us, I’m making sure I dedicate at least one day a week right now that is completely for myself. My preferred choice of self-care is a hot bath, a good book, music playing through my headphones, and usually something a little sweet to nibble on. I make sure to do one productive thing a day, whether it is writing a blog post or getting a load of dishes done. I will shoot a text message to someone that I haven’t checked in on for a while, and I just might even take a nice nap.
Self-care is so important, never forget it!