Published October 8, 2019
Written by Nicole Harr, Director of Community Engagement
Do you ever feel like your gas tank is just plain empty? While it may be easy to fill up your car at the gas station, when your personal tank is empty it is time to think about taking some time for yourself. When you neglect caring for yourself, it catches up to you in many ways including loss of sleep, difficulty concentrating, loss of patience, feeling burnout, etc.
What is self-care?
Self-care is a deliberate activity that you do to take care of your mental, emotional and physical health. Self-care is not something you force yourself to do.
The key to self-care is keep it simple. It is easy to sabotage your self-care routine by setting goals for self-care that are simply impossible to achieve in your already busy life. Find easy, simple things that you enjoy and incorporate them into your daily life.
Make yourself a priority
As the holidays approach, it can be hard to find time to prioritize yourself. Start now and build a routine so that when life gets even busier over the holidays, you are prepared and already practicing self-care. A quick Internet search will give you plenty of ideas for self-care.
Try something and if it doesn’t work for you, try something else until you find an activity that truly makes you feel better and more prepared for the rest of your day. For me, I find that simply taking 5–10 minutes to put my feet up and relax works wonders. I also like to listen to music and I have found that taking a quick walk during the day can rejuvenate me and helps me get ready for a busy afternoon.
A few more ideas
- Read a book or a magazine.
- Light a candle.
- Enjoy a cup of tea.
- Write in a journal.
- Do yoga.
- Take a bath or a shower.
- Call a friend to enjoy conversation.
- Take a nap.
- Find a hobby.
- Go to your favorite coffee shop.
- Cook or bake a favorite recipe.
- Buy fresh flowers.
- Visit a museum.
- Plan something to look forward to.
If you are still thinking, “I don’t have time for self-care,” try starting with your morning routine. Begin by adding in five minutes for you. You might be surprised to find that even such a short amount of time helps and encourages you to care for yourself every day.