Self-care is a trending topic these days. We see it everywhere, but it can be difficult to actually practice it. It seems like an indulgence, doesn’t it?
Something we should have to earn. I used to see it that way. I wore myself out pleasing everyone and meeting everyone’s needs before my own- my husband’s, my kids, my clients, my friends, heck, even acquaintances.
I believed that I owed everyone, and if they expected something, anything—it was my job to come through. What I didn’t realize was that this was driving me to the edge of myself.
My inability to take care of myself was keeping me captive and guaranteeing that nothing and no one was going to get my best. It wasn’t until I got diagnosed with a chronic illness that it hit me like a ton of bricks. I didn’t have a choice anymore. I had to take care of myself. If I didn’t, not only would I be unable to care for my family, they would end up having to care for me.
This reality is something I wish women could come to without having to go through what I did. I want to shout from the rooftops, “YOU NEED THIS! IT’S NOT OPTIONAL! AND IT ISN’T SELFISH!”
Let’s be honest. Self-care takes a great deal of what we are so sorely lacking…
Time. Money. Energy.
Let me be clear: being in survival mode is OKAY. There is no judgment here, none. When you are surviving, you do what you have to do. Whatever it takes. Just get through the day—that is the end game. But once you see the light start peeking through, it’s important to start taking care of yourself.
But how? When? With what extra cash?
Here are some things that I’ve tried. These are small things that made a difference in my sanity and didn’t make a huge dent in my budget.
These ideas are not super extravagant, but they have helped me to feel less crazy, less depressed, less stressed, and more grateful. Here we go!
- Say no.
- Do a 10-minute yoga set.
- Take a quick drive around the block—windows down, tunes up.
- Change your environment if even for a few hours—go somewhere new.
- Ask for help.
- Take a walk after the kids are in bed.
- Practice Earthing for 10 minutes.
- Have a quick early morning quiet time.
- Dance around the house like a crazy person.
- Connect with another mom.
- Go to bed a little earlier than usual.
- Get a new book from the library and read it before bed.
- Jot down a quick gratitude list.
- Order your favorite coffee or tea drink.
- Listen to a podcast that fuels your passion or imagination.
- Declutter a space for ten minutes.
- Plan a lunch or dinner at your favorite spot.
- Jot some thoughts down in your notes app or on paper.
- Disconnect from social media for a few days.
- Go outside. Take deep breaths. Repeat.
What other ways do you practice self-care that have been helpful?
*Note — This article was originally published at The New Mystique.