Self care has been a hot topic of 2019. But what does it actually mean? Self care constitutes the small things we do to help our physical, emotional and spiritual lives. In essence, it is making sure you are taken care of, by you.
Everyone experiences the stress of work and family life at some point in their lives. You may feel too busy to look after yourself because of all the other people you are responsible for. But if you want to look after everyone else to the best of your ability, you have to start with yourself. To mark Time to Talk Day, a national day that seeks to challenge the stigma around mental health, we have compiled a list of simple steps you can follow to make sure you are the best version of you.
Mediation is the practice of directing your attention towards a singular point of focus, most commonly the breath. Meditation has been proven to improve your attention span. This is key to every part of your life, from your performance at work to the quality of your relationships. It has also been proven to reduce stress and anxiety, improve your sleep and even boost your immune system. On top of that, it feels amazing to take time out, tune into yourself and be present in the moment.
2. Get Enough Sleep
Making sure that you’re getting enough sleep is one the most important and pleasurable ways to look after yourself. The average adult needs from seven to eight hours of sleep a night. However, according to a recent study, 38% of British adults are not getting their recommended dose of shut-eye. The most important things you can do is to not eat spicy or heavy foods for three hours before you go to sleep, wake up at the same time every day (even on the weekends), avoid screen time for at least two hours before you go to bed and make sure you have blackout blinds.
3. Give Yourself a Detox from Technology
It can be too easy to allow technology to follow you around, everywhere you go. By giving yourself limits on how much time you spend on social media, you can focus on unwinding as opposed to being bombarded with the wealth of fragmented information that can typically be found on social media sites. Similarly, by giving yourself a break from your work emails, you can create a healthy barrier between your work and home life, allowing yourself to properly de-stress.
4. Exercise for at Least 30 Minutes a Day
Doing at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise can have a transformative impact on your physical and mental health. Giving yourself a dose of daily endorphins will help your appetite, improve your sleep and will leave you feeling refreshed and revitalized. On top of that, exercising with a friend or loved one is a great way to build a connection based on shared experiences.
5. Take Time for YOU
If you find yourself constantly running around after everyone else, make sure you take some time out to do something that you enjoy, purely for yourself. Going off to the cinema, enjoying a delicious meal or booking yourself in for a spa treatment are all great ways to give yourself the love you deserve.