self care

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”

– The Buddha

With living through the past year of dealing with all of the challenges of the pandemic, it’s important to remember little things in life that can add small bursts of comfort & quality to our daily lives. As we collectively attempt to start returning “to normal”, you may be able to re-emerge with a new or renewed sense of appreciation for little things that can contribute to a sense of well-being. Here are just a few ideas to help get you thinking about what could add a bit of self-care to your routine:

  • Try and set aside some time for reading each day- a half-hour or an hour daily to read a new book, a favorite author, or learning something new.
  • If your day is too busy or if you find you are too tired to do quality reading, try just quietly sit- outside on the porch or deck, or even just by a window.
  • Enjoy a nice walk outside without an end goal or destination in mind.
  • Find a new activity to enjoy- maybe try a small garden, find a new 1 pot recipe to cook for dinner, learn to bake a loaf of easy soda bread. The key is to find a creative activity you enjoy, that doesn’t seem like work or a hard chore. Perhaps some professional landscaping or hardscaping work in your yard could help inspire you with a new area to relax or garden in.
  • Find time for a nap if your body is telling you that you need rest. Stress quality over quantity- a short cat nap vs a long one that will affect your ability to sleep well overnight.
  • Take a mental health day. If you feel you are burning out, take a day to yourself and feel 0 guilt about doing so.
  • Retail therapy- perhaps without a specific item in mind, go browse in a store with some extra cash and see if an item “finds you”.
  • If you are drinking a lot of coffee or soda, try switching to green tea, which has less caffeine and 0 calories. Perhaps enjoy coffee in the morning, but then switch to tea in the afternoon instead of making another trip to the coffee pot. And remember to drink plenty of water each day.
  • Daily stretching. Find some time each day for a 10 minute or longer routine of stretches to help you stay limber. If you find yourself sedentary or working many hours in a chair and notice back discomfort or pain more and more, it may be wise to get checked out by a chiropractor. Many chiropractors offer relatively inexpensive initial comprehensive exams and consultations.
  • Small decluttering projects. It can be daunting to think of reorganizing a home space- it can seem like a lot of effort, or you have trouble finding the time to do so. But if you break the project down into small tasks that take even 5-10 minutes a day, you might find that the project is complete or near-complete after a week or so of this daily effort.

There are many, many other things you can do to promote your own self-care- the treat of a therapeutic massage, a spa day, a weekend getaway quiet vacation. Take some time to give some of these ideas a try or to come up with your own ideas to get you into a good mindset of self-care!