Self-care is a topic that has social media and people abuzz. An Instagram search for #selfcare reveals more than 5 million results with posts varying from product recommendations for essential oils to petal laden bubble baths surrounded by crystals. With blog posts, magazine articles, and self-help books popping up daily, it may seem like another passing wellness trend – but 2018 may as well be the year of self-betterment. You’ve got to nourish to flourish!
According to TechCrunch, the revenue of top 10 wellness apps for iTunes and Android grew by 170 percent between the first quarter of 2017 and the first quarter of 2018. Not to mention Google searches, which show a near doubling in interest in “self-care” during the past few years.
What’s all the hype about then? What exactly is self-care?
Self-care is a wide-ranging expression that encompasses just about anything one can do to “care” about one’s “self” – hence self-care. In a nutshell, it’s about being as kind to yourself as you are to others. It’s also about knowing when your energy reserves are running low and not feeling guilty about taking a few moments to replenish them. Sound too good to be true? You might need a little then.
However, it’s important to note that not everything that feels good is self-care. We can all be tempted to use unhealthy coping mechanisms. These activities are self-destructive and the relief is only temporary. Focus on the “well” part of wellness – it’s about doing things that are good for you. Soul food mentality.
Benefits Of Self Care:
Improved resistance to disease.
You’ve got more to give.
Types Of Self Care:
There are loads of self-care practices to experiment with. Ask yourself: What works for me? What isn’t working for me? What do I want to add? What do I want to take away?
You might need to put a little effort in for planning or put some time aside. But you’ll probably find that once you start adding these good vibes to your life, you’ll become fiercely protective of that time and wonder how you ever managed without it! Take it from someone who protects their meditation time like a mama bear protects her cubs!
Sensory self-care is all about your senses.
Being in nature and appreciating the fresh air.
Watching the flames of a candle or a fire.
Feeling the water on your skin during a hot bath or shower.
Listening to music with your eyes closed.
Soaking up the heat of the afternoon sun.
Enjoying a little guilty pleasure. (Wine for me please.)
Emotional self-care focuses on expressing your emotions in a healthy way. (It’s 2018, so it’s about time!)
Keep a daily journal and let all your emotions out.
See a therapist, even if it’s just for a few sessions of general personal development.
Write a list of “feeling words” to expand your emotional vocabulary.
Make time to be with a friend or family member who truly understands you.
Have a good cry when needed.
Watch something funny! (That’s 70’s Show is my go-to!)
Spiritual self-care is more about values than it is about religion.
Keep up a daily meditation or mindfulness practice.
Spend some time outdoors – nothing quite as spiritual as spending time with Mother Nature.
Attend a service, whether it is religious or humanistic.
Be creative, whether through art, music, writing or something else entirely.
Say an affirmation/mantra that grounds you.
Physical self-care is all about looking out for your body.
Dance to your favourite songs.
Do yoga. Namaste!
Go for a walk with your dog/friend.
Nap when you need to. And make sure you get at least 7 hours of sleep!
Learn to say “no”. This is powerful – trust me!
Social self-care is about spending time with people who make you feel good.
Set aside time for your loved ones or friends.
Reach out to someone you like but haven’t seen in a while.
Join a group of people who share your interests.
Stop socializing with those who undermine or disempower you. (This is solid gold!)
Strike up a conversation with a stranger.
Self-care is about more than just a hashtag or downloading apps – it’s a cause focused on well-being, and if that isn’t spectacular then I don’t know if you’re even evolving with the rest of society. Sorry not sorry. It’s about more than just sipping tea in your pyjamas – but if that’s heaven for you, do it – it’s about reminding people (like you) who work hard and maintain relationships that taking a break isn’t just okay – it’s absolutely essential. So the next time you feel yourself in the fast lane towards a breakdown remember to pause for a moment, and just be human – it’s beautiful, I promise.