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When was the last time you did something purely for yourself?
If you can’t remember, it’s definitely time for you to start developing some self care habits! Self care is not only important for improving your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, it will help you be more effective and fulfilled at work.
If we don’t practice self care, it can lead to increased levels of anxiety, stress and overwhelm. You may start reacting badly to circumstances or people, which can then lead to a crisis at work or in a bad place in your relationships.
Stress like this can then manifest in physical ailments, which are different for everyone. You may get a cold, or indigestion, insomnia, stomach ulcers or migraines. Eventually, you might reach a level where you burn out. And when you’re in this place, my friend, you’re no good to anyone.
And simply taking one beach vacation a year does NOT count as sustainable and effective self care. You’re better off incorporating daily self care habits into your life – so in an ideal world, the vacation becomes a nice little life bonus, not a ‘recovery period’ you need to have. See the difference?
In this episode, I share some of my daily self care habits and the positive impact they’ve had on my business and overall happiness. Get ready to be nourished! Summary is below.
5 Ideas For Developing Self Care Habits
1. Celebrate yourself
Think that self care has to be expensive or time consuming? Think again, my friend. It can start with simply being kind to ourselves and celebrating our wins. You may like to write down your ‘wins’ or achievements in a journal. Maybe you write daily affirmations or gratitudes.
Whenever I get a nice message or tweet, I screen shot it and move it to a folder I call “Crush It”. Whenever I read through those messages, I get a little mood boost. Try it for yourself!
2. What brings you joy and nourishment?
I spoke about this in last week’s ‘12 Principles For Success‘. Have a think about the activities that absolutely light you up, and write them down. Go nuts and don’t sensor yourself!
Some ideas for you: getting a massage, reading a book, drawing, going for a delicious lunch, sitting in the park and listening to podcasts, getting your nails done, speaking to a friend, yoga, going for a long walk, sleeping, cooking delicious food and so on.
Once you’ve done that, move on to Idea 3…
3. Schedule it in!
Now look at your schedule. How many of the activities that bring you joy and nourishment are scheduled in your calendar or to-do list?
I have a saying, that if it isn’t in my calendar or to-do list, it doesn’t get done. So if you’re serious about developing a self care habit, make sure you schedule that time in for you! Treat it like an important business appointment with yourself 😉
I love using Omni Focus for all my to-dos, which gets everything out of my head and helps me to think clearly. Plus, I now set reminders for myself to ‘Book 1 Hour Massage’ and ‘Call a friend’ and ‘Book in a hair cut’ and ‘Go to dance class’. Now, I have no excuse to not make time for myself!
4. Listen to your body
When we get run down, our bodies tell us. We may feel more tired, or get sniffly, or a tickly throat. Now is not the time to ‘push through’. Unfortunately, “don’t take a sick day, soldier on” is the messaging we’re fed from pharmaceutical companies, such as Codral:
Umm, did it not occur to anyone that this is the body’s way of telling you to slow down and take a break?? (I could rant about this for hours, but we’ll leave that for another time)
If you want to be kind to yourself, practice tuning in to your body. I spoke on a similar topic in Episode 134, How To Manage Your Energy. Figuring this out was a game changer for me!
5. Give your mind a break
One reason why we get anxious and overwhelmed is because we are constantly feeding our minds with incessant messaging from email, social media, TV and so on. One simple (but not always easy) way to care for your mind is to take a break, unplug and just….be.
Yep that’s right. Next time you’re waiting in line at the bank or post office or coffee shop, put your phone away, and simply stand there and observe your surroundings. I can feel some of you cringing already! It’s ok, no one is watching and judging you. You’ll be fine. And your mind will thank you for it 🙂
Additional resource: Why I’m Practicing Mindfulness [Episode 107]
There are many ways we can practice self care, and those are just a few ideas for you. I hope you can take at least one thing on board and implement it daily! If this resonated with you, please share this article or podcast with someone who think you could use a little more self care in their life. Namaste 🙂