The idea of self-care is a popular one, but sometimes, defining what true self-care looks like can get confusing.
There are no guidelines to follow – just do something for yourself that brings you joy and eliminates stress. A self-care routine is a boost for your physical and mental health, according to Bayhealth Family Medicine Physician Angela Debo, DO.
If the idea of practicing a self-care routine seems daunting, try starting small, with a 30-minute self-care routine each week. “Self-care is not only beneficial for your mental health, but also helps reduce burnout rates at work and with life overall, and self-care helps you recharge,” said Debo.
So, the next time you feel anxious or short-tempered, try planning some self-care time, and then enjoy it.
Here are 10 simple ways to practice self-care:
- Go for a walk outside. If you are at home during the day, take a walk around your neighborhood. If you work in an office, take your allotted break time and lace up those tennis shoes. Track your progress on a fitness app to keep you motivated.
- Listen to your favorite podcast. There are plenty of podcasts to choose from, including self-help, parenting tips, cooking shows, mysteries and more.
- Go to your favorite restaurant on your lunch break. A simple change in routine once a week can have a big impact.
- Find a quiet place to read a book. Maybe it’s a spot in your bedroom or sunroom, or even on a park bench, but finding a relaxing spot is key.
- Meditate or pray. Taking time to center yourself and have a deeper connection will benefit you in various ways.
- Get your favorite coffee and enjoy it by yourself. Go to your favorite coffee shop and sip on your favorite drink.
- Take a relaxing bubble bath. Turn on your favorite music, throw in a bath bomb, and maybe even read a book while you relax.
- Schedule a time to meet up with a friend; take time to reconnect with people who bring positive energy into your life.
- Plan a weekend away with your partner or by yourself. Sometimes you need to get away, even if it’s just for one night.
- If you’ve been thinking about starting a particular hobby – do it.
Self-care doesn’t have to be a solo activity. If you find joy from going on a walk as a family or going to a book club with friends, then that’s your perfect self-care routine.
“No matter what you choose to do for your self-care routine, it’s truly all about finding something that brings you joy,” said Debo. “And you must allow yourself the time and not feel guilty about doing something for yourself.”