Incorporating self-care into your life.
No matter who you are, what you’ve done or what stage of life you’re at, there’s ONE thing you absolutely must incorporate into your life. And that is self-care.
Without self-care, you can spend your life stressed, sick, and exhausted. Without taking the time to care for yourself, you can also miss out on the truly important things in life like spending time with loved ones or doing what makes you happy.
Neglecting and ignoring your needs is not noble. It’s not a badge that you should wear proudly. Putting everything and everyone else above your physical, mental, emotional or spiritual health is a sign of low self-esteem – not selflessness.
Self-care is something we are rarely taught about in school and is often a subject neglected by our parents growing up. Take a few seconds to reflect: who taught you how to take care of physical, emotional, mental, AND spiritual needs when you were little? If you’re like most people, you will draw a blank.
Pay attention to the following red flags. If you are neglecting self-care, you might experience:
- Constant tiredness and fatigue – Poor sleep quality
- Irritability (little things annoy you)
- Chronic illnesses (e.g. colds, flu, infections)
- Anxiety and worry – Paranoia
- Constant low-grade depression – Feelings of emptiness
- Disconnection from your body
- No time to do what makes you happy – All work and no play
- Negative and self-sabotaging thoughts
- Low self-worth and insecurity
Why are we resistant to self-care?
You’ve probably heard it before. “I’m too busy to do that,” “I have too much on my plate right now,” “I don’t have time,” etc. I myself have been guilty of using these excuses more than once!
One major reason why we overlook self-care is that we have our priorities wrong. We weren’t taught how important and essential taking care of ourselves is as children. So as adults we have no concept of self-nurturing. We are unaware of the importance of self-care, we place other things like work and family commitments above our won health, because that’s all we know.
Self-care, to many people, is also unfortunately associated with selfishness. There is an old and outdated perception that taking care of your needs first equals being self-centered. If we closely examine this belief, we can see how ridiculous and short-sighted it is. How are we able to take care of others if we cannot take care of ourselves? How is it possible to let others “drink from your cup” so to speak, if you have no water inside of it to give in the first place? Taking care of yourself equals taking care of others.
The more love you show towards yourself the more love you’ll be able to show towards others. It’s as simple as that. Yet many people carry an unhealthy mindset where they believe that they must do everything for others 100% of the time. This isn’t dignified or heroic this is dysfunctional and toxic form of behavior that makes both oneself and others miserable.
Poor self-esteem is another reason why some people are resistant to self-care. The belief that “I’m not worth it” is so pervasive in our society. Inevitably, poor self-worth results in self-neglect, sometimes even as a form of self-punishment. However, if you struggle with low self-esteem I encourage you to go ahead and practice the self-care ideas below anyway. The more you incorporate them into your life, the better you will feel about who you are at a core level.
Self-care ideas for those struggling with self-loveUnless you have your shit completely together (which is very rare), you probably struggle with self-love and self-care. I too identify with the majority of us who have intense and messy lives. It’s not easy. Being human is a journey and most of us have to learn from scratch how to nurture ourselves.
If you struggle with stress, overwhelm, and a mind that just won’t turn off, this list of self-care ideas is for you. If you have low motivation, negative mindsets, and self-defeating habits, this list is for you.
This condensed list is for everyone who is brave enough to own their imperfections and do something to feel better. We have compiled our list of over 30 self-care ideas for you to grab! Click here to snag it!
The best advice I can give is to take it one step at a time. Don’t rush. The advice presented below is the work of a lifetime – not the work of a week. So be realistic and do the best you can. Give yourself grace as you learn to nurture and love yourself.
Self-care ideas for the body
- Sit somewhere in nature. Take in the scenery, the fresh air, and the birds singing.
- Relax in a soothing bath. Add some Epsom salt and essential oil in the bath to unwind and let go.
Self-care ideas for the heart
- Have a good laugh. Watch or read something entertaining even if that means a silly video of baby goats in pajamas on YouTube.
- Have a good cry. Let out all your feelings. Watch a sad movie. Have a tissue box and a blanket to snuggle in handy.
Self-care ides for the mind
- Feed and expand your mind. Learn something new. Read up on different topics and open your mind to new perspectives. Enrich your understanding of the world.
- Journal and self-reflect. Record your journey with self-care and write down your key discoveries. Reflect on your progress and feel proud. Learn more about how to journal.
Self-care ideas for the soul
- Light a candle and watch the shifting light. Indulge in some relaxation with a scented candle. Watch the flickering of the light against the wall and connect with your inner self. (you can do this while relaxing in a soothing bath)
- Ask for help and guidance. If you’re feeling confused, lost, sad, stressed or depressed, reach out to someone. Asking for help is a sign of courage and intelligence. Find a trusted friend, advisor and/or pray to your higher power!
How to use the suggestions above
Pay attention to any of the suggestions above that jump out at you. Jot the ideas down in your journal. Focus on these practices first.
Remember, there’s no need to rush! Go at your own pace. Do as much or as little as feels comfortable to you. Most importantly, be consistent.
Self-care is a habit, and it can become a wonderful way of life. Take it one day at a time. Use our handy tracker and self-care ideas when you’re feeling stuck or need the extra motivation!