A Practical Self-Care Guide
Bubble bath is just not going to cut it
Self-care became such a blanket statement and often overused marketing line. But let us strip it down to its core. Self-care is caring for yourself. Sounds easy right?
Pour your self a bath, light an expensive candle and you’re pretty much done. I wish it was that easy. What to do if you don’t have a bathtub? What to do if you simply don’t like taking a hot bath? What to do when a hot bath is just not going to cut it? Self-care is a tool, it’s a tool that will remind you of who you are and what you like. Spending time with yourself and on yourself is not a luxury but a necessity. Don’t know where to start? Well, you came to the right place.
See and follow what feels right
One of the first thing that springs to mind when it comes to self-care in 2019 is social media clear out. Let’s #mariekondo your Instagram. Make it intuitive. You are pretty much-keeping tabs on what feels right to you and what doesn’t.
If something feels wrong, you ask yourself why and move away from it. As an example, a media person whom you followed on a whim ages ago, but after some time you see their post or a story on you feed, it gives you little pull in your stomach. An unpleasant one. Let’s say it makes you feel guilty, cringe or sometimes it makes you feel that you are not enough. Let me tell you, if someone or something makes you feel like you are not enough, it has got to go!
Tailor your own everyday experience by unfollowing and muting accounts that makes you feel anything less than amazing.
On the contrary, noticing what feels great is important. Follow those people and accounts that inform, and supplement your life. I’m not suggesting a complete block of news, different points of view or creating a cocoon. It’s just a simple principle of where attention goes, energy flows. It might feel silly or insignificant at first, but after a week or two of curating your digital experience, you will start noticing a huge difference.
Make more time
Scheduling. As crazy as it sounds, having a calendar for all things life is huge when it comes to caring about yourself and your mental health. It’s almost as if you are taking that emotional fatigue of decision making of off your shoulders.
When I’m saying all things life I mean all things life. What time do you get up, what time you brush your teeth, what time is your breakfast, what time are you going to take your pooch out for a walk, what time is your computer time, what time is your Instagram time, what time is your reading time, what is your gym time, what is your artistic time…You get the picture.
Ticking things off will feel like an accomplishment. Let’s be real for a second, making a bed sometimes feels like a huge accomplishment.
On a Sunday night when you relaxing, make five minutes and create a draft schedule for the week. Write everything down with timings. It’s a huge help when it comes to dodging large pockets of procrastination. It’s a huge help when you find yourself saying “I want to work out, but I just don’t have the time” well…schedule it. Honestly. It works.
Speaking of things that make one feel great. For me personally, it’s indoor gardening. I’m a proud Monstera mum and a serial avocado stone propagator. My wife is an avid table tennis player. What is your thing? What would you put on your schedule to fill your self up on a weekly basis? Is there a DIY project that you wanted to tackle three years ago and even saved it on Pinterest? Do you have a cool photography project in mind and you wanted to do for ages but never quite made the time?
Well, today is the best time to do it! Put it on your schedule, believe me, you have the time, just make it a priority.
Disconnect and reconnect
You guessed it! I’m talking about social media again or rather your entire phone. Don’t get me wrong, I love my phone. I love it very much. I really do. But I also love not being on it all the time. All of the time. Start the disconnect small. Don’t bring your phone to your bedroom. Just leave it in your lounge for the night. Just see how that feels. It probably won’t feel great. At first. But it is so much better not to fall asleep scrolling Instagram at first, then Facebook, then Twitter, then Youtube and back to Instagram.
There are obviously some real practical sides of smartphones. Most people use it as an alarm. So get an old fashioned alarm clock. After practising that for a couple of weeks, try and leave your phone at home when you are going to the park. I know. Crazy. And I’m not even being sarcastic.
We all have jobs, careers, email account or two, countless social media accounts. The truth is that it’s just too overwhelming. The real act of self-care is to disconnect from it all and connect to who you are. Well and maybe do run that hot bath.