3 Acts of Self Care To Implement Right Now!
Say it with me “self care is NOT selfish!”. Good, now keep saying it until you believe it. Because it’s true. It is so easy to get caught up in our daily lives, full of hustle and bustle. Slowing down and taking the time to deliberately focus on your physical and mental health is, in our opinion, one of the most important acts of self love. Self care doesn’t need to be time consuming, and it doesn’t need to cost anything - in fact, it’s often the quiet, calm moments that have the greatest impact on our mental wellbeing.
Here are our 3 favourite acts of self care that you can start implementing into your daily routine...right now!
1. Start the day with a peaceful activity
Taking an extra five to ten minutes for yourself in the morning can make all the difference, and set you up for a positive outlook and more productive day overall. Find a quiet activity that you enjoy and set a timer for as long as you’d like. Ideally, this would be completed in a distraction free environment, without any interruptions, so you can focus entirely on whatever activity brings you peace. Some of our favourites include:
Practising mindfulness to truly experience the present moment
Following along to a guided meditation
Writing in a gratitude journal
Creating a “to-do” list for the day to organize your thoughts
Gentle stretching to wake up your body and decrease any pain or stiffness
Pro tip: you can even sip on your morning coffee at the same time!
2. Move your body
We know you’ve heard this one before, but it really works! Taking 30 minutes each day for some physical activity has been shown to not only improve your physical health, but also improve your mental health, increase productivity and focus, and increase overall energy levels throughout the day. Can’t take a 30-minute break during the day? No problem - the effects of physical activity are cumulative, meaning that you can break up your activity into shorter periods and have the same overall effect. So, take two 15-minute breaks, or three 10-minute breaks, six 5-minute breaks...you get the idea. There’s no right or wrong way to get your 30 minutes of activity, but if you need some ideas:
Try walking around the block after dinner, or getting up and walking around the office once every hour
Take the stairs instead of the elevator whenever possible
Explore hiking trails in your area
Take a leisurely bike ride around your city/town
Try a yoga class either online or in person - YouTube has some great options for any experience level
Join a group exercise class with a friend (or make a new friend in the class!)
Pro tip: you can combine self care acts 1 & 2 by choosing a peaceful morning activity that involves some movement - like taking a short walk, stretching, or practising yoga
3. Wind down before bed
We’re all guilty of it - checking Instagram one last time before bed, then scrolling for who knows how long. Using social media, or screens in general, before bed has been shown to make falling asleep more difficult, and to decrease the overall quality of your sleep. Because of this, we recommend taking at least 30 minutes to wind down before bed, without any screens. Need some ideas of things to do instead of stare at your phone? We’ve got you covered:
Read a chapter of a book or listen to an audiobook
Reflect on your day - write down 3 positive things that happened that day and one goal for the next day
Have a warm bubble bath
Try some gentle stretching paired with deep breathing
Remember - you can’t be the best version of you if you’re not making time for self care.
What would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments!