Self-care. Often times we feel guilty or selfish when focusing solely on ourselves. Especially when we have others depending on us like a spouse, children, other family members, and friends. In the words of my best-friend Katrina, “Self-care is not the absence of loving others. Rather, it is making sure not to neglect yourself in the process. No one can pour from an empty well.” Not sure where to start? Here’s a few ways you can show yourself a little TLC today.
Identify things that make your heart smile, and do them often!
This was something my therapist made me do after our first session. “Think of all the things that make your heart smile and write them down. Make an effort to do as many of these things for yourself as often as possible.” There are so many things on my heart smile list from coloring to impromptu trips to the National Harbor. Whatever makes your heart smile, write it down, and do them!
Play your favorite upbeat song and sing & dance like nobody’s watching–in the mirror.
This is self-explanatory. Turn on and upbeat tune and give yourself a show. Lip sync for your life or shout the lyrics boldly. Let go and have fun!
Take yourself on a “Me, Myself, & I” date.
This is one of the best self-care practices, especially if you’re learning to TRULY love yourself and enjoy your own company. Take yourself to the movies, get dressed up and go to a nice restaurant, go walk around in the park. Whatever you choose to do, TREAT YO SELF!
Complete a DIY project.
If you’re like me and are constantly pinning different DIY projects on Pinterest then ACTUALLY completing one of these projects will bring you much joy! Pick something simple to start off with and see how you feel after. If you enjoyed it, move onto something a little more complex. My most recent favorite has been creating shadowboxes for people, so fun!
Watch one of your favorite childhood movies.
Pretty self-explanatory. Whether it’s a Disney classic, something from the 80s, or a black & white western. Sit back, relax, and watch.
Catch up with an old friend who you haven’t seen or talked to recently.
I don’t know about you, but my friends are an essential part of my life. Life can get hectic and busy and you can look up and it’s been a month since you’ve talked to one of your good friends. I know that whether it’s been five days or five weeks, I can pick up the phone and call my friends and we’ll chat it up like it hasn’t been a while since our last conversation.
Pin positive affirmations where you can see them.
I talk about positive affirmations a lot because THEY REALLY DO WORK! Wherever you’re spending the most time, that’s where you should pin them. In your room, in your car, in your phone.. Post them where you will SEE them!
Take a bubble bath complete with candles and music.
No explanation needed. Added bonus if you add a glass of wine. 😛
Say no, with no explanation.
Don’t feel like going out with that certain someone tonight? Say no. Don’t feel like doing that favor or two? Say no. Not really in the mood to babysit tonight? Say no, and mean it. Added bonus if you don’t include a “sorry”. It’s not selfish, you‘re taking care of you.
Unplug for an hour, or two.
This one is VERY important. In the age of social media it’s easy to spend hours browsing different profiles on different platforms, comparing lives and reading gossip. Sometimes the bad news, political debates, and internet trolls become a bit much. It’s okay to unplug for an hour or two, or maybe even a day or two. Clear your mind, regroup, purge your friends lists if you need to. Just remember to #ProtectYourMentalHealth.