You’ve probably heard the phrase, “At the end of the day, the only person you can truly count on, is yourself.” This is an important lesson to master. It’s so easy to get caught up in other people, their lives, their words, until your own voice is drowned out, and your own self, is forgotten and left behind.
It’s very easy to get lost trying to fit into the molds of society. It’s easy to neglect yourself, to put off your own needs for those around you. But, how can you be the best version of yourself if you’re too busy catering to the needs of the outside world?
You know how when you take a flight somewhere and they tell you that in case of an emergency, to make sure to put on your own oxygen mask before helping someone else? We often forget in our daily lives, to ensure we have enough oxygen before stepping out into our daily grinds.
By just taking a few minutes every day to dedicate just to your own self, to nurture and love your mind, body, and spirit, you have the power to truly transform your life. If you can find that seed of contentment deep inside you every day and water it lovingly for a few minutes, you’ll blossom into the beautiful flower that you are!
So, without further ado, here are 15 self-care practices in no particular order, to start incorporating into your life right away!
Have you ever come home after a long day to a completely untidy, borderline ransacked place? The feeling of coming home to a mess is the last thing anyone enjoys and a great practice is to tidy up little by little so things never really get out of hand. See something lying on the floor that shouldn’t be there? Put it back in its home. Don’t toss your clothes on the chair after coming home, hang them up in your closet or toss them in your dirty laundry bin. Just finished your meal? Rinse those dishes right away and stack them in the dishwasher. Those tiny little annoyances will actually make you feel so much better by giving you a tiny sense of accomplishment and control over your surroundings!
Clean Your Room/House:
Along the same lines as tidying up, make cleaning up a regular practice in your life. Your room or home is your temple and your sanctuary to relax in, unwind, and let the worries fade away. Honor yourself by making sure that your space is clean and organized. If your place tends to get messy fast, take the time to reduce your belongings. Wipe down every surface, dust every surface, open up your window, let some fresh air in, fill your room with sunlight, and fill it with the lovely scent of lavender (or whatever you prefer) by running an essential oil diffuser. Turn your space into your sanctuary!
Cook Up a Special, Healthy & Delicious Meal:
Treat yourself to a personal date by cooking up a fancy and nourishing breakfast, lunch, or dinner just for yourself! Use wholesome ingredients, take the time to smell the ingredients, put on some lovely music, and enjoy the process of making something yummy just for yourself. Then, set up the table as if you had company coming over, because you’re about to have dinner with the best company of all! Finally, sit down and enjoy that meal. Eat slowly and take your time, enjoying the feeling of nourishing yourself distraction-free.
The Little Touches:
Sometimes, it’s the little touches that count! Infusing your water with your favorite fruit, lighting up a candle for dinner, putting on a favorite tune while you work, or watching a funny video for some giggles! Don’t miss an opportunity to brighten up your life. Sometimes putting in an extra 30 seconds to make something just a little bit special for yourself, can give you an immense feeling of peace!
Read a Book:
There is nothing more enjoyable, than losing yourself in a good book. Fiction or nonfiction, it’s important to carve out some time in your life to enjoy a good book. When you read, you can be anyone, anything, anywhere. None of your worries can bother you because you’re too busy having an adventure! So, every once in a while (or as often as you’d like!), grab a book, a comfy spot to sit somewhere, maybe a cup of tea or coffee, and just lose yourself in a world of magic.
Do Something Fun and/or Silly:
Play a video game, or maybe make a harmless prank call, or draw something cartoony! You should never become too old to have a little fun in life! Nothing is more healthy than getting your daily required amount of laughs in, and if you’re falling behind in the laugh department, it’s time to up your game! Be silly, go play at your nearest playground, or maybe even go have a playdate with your kid friend (you’re missing out if you don’t have at least one friend under 10), and let your inner child take the reigns for a bit – I promise you won’t regret it!
Do a DIY Project:
Is there some project you’ve been wanting to try out? Maybe it’s woodcarving, or making a DIY beauty product, or learning how to fix up something in your house or on your car, or making some art. Whatever it is, stop waiting! Grab your supplies and get to work! You’ll feel relaxed and motivated and when you finish your project, you’ll be so proud (or if things go wrong, get a big laugh out of it!). Enjoy the process and let your mind unwind.
Take a Relaxing Bath/Shower:
Does anything really compare to the feeling of warm (or scaldingly hot if you’re like me) water enveloping your whole body? You deserve some spa level treatment from yourself, so set up a luxurious bubble bath, head to a local hot tub, or turn up some relaxing tunes for a nice long shower and let your mind take a break from all the stress!
Play or Listen to Your Favorite Music:
Music is truly magic for the soul. A song can take you back a lifetime or fill you with hope and joy for the future. It can inspire you and uplift you. It can console you and relax you. It can be whatever you need. Put on your favorite music, or if you play an instrument, have a private jam session. Either way, let your mind, body, and soul connect to the notes and you’ll feel that elusive sense of contentment within your grasp.
Take a Long Walk or Do Some Yoga:
Nothing perks you up like a gentle endorphin rush and the best way to get a fix of some endorphins is to do something physical. Take a long walk around your neighborhood and take some time to really take in the beauty around you. The colors in the sky, the leaves on the ground. Just soak it all in. Or maybe roll out your yoga mat in your room, on the beach, or in a park, and just stretch out all your muscles. Feel your muscles loosen and flex. Soak in the sensations. Let the rejuvenation fill your spirit.
Give Your Skin Some Love:
Give yourself some 5-star treatment by busting out your favorite facemask! Make a quick DIY recipe, or maybe use one you already have on hand. Even just cutting up a cucumber and putting the peels on your skin, and the slices on your eyes can do the trick. Just take a quick 20-30 minutes to nourish your skin and your body will thank you for it after!
Surround Yourself With What You Love:
It’s easy to fall into the trap of consumerism and associate more objects with more happiness. You see something on sale at a store that catches your eye, and you immediately want it, so you buy it. It excites you initially, but a few hours later, that joy is gone and the object is banished to a dark corner in your closet. How often does this scenario repeat in your life? But, what if you took the time to truly assess each and every object and ask yourself if you really love each object? What if you get rid of everything that doesn’t spark joy as Marie Kondo suggests? The end result will be that you will be surrounded only by the things you absolutely love and cherish, and what could be better than being surrounded by the things you love?
Learn Something New:
Your brain needs nurturing too! To make sure you’re giving your brain some love too, it’s important to engage in a variety of activities that engage the brain. One of the best ways to engage your brain is to learn something new and complex! It can be a language, or a topic that you’re interested in, or some sort of skill you’d like to acquire. Make sure to learn in an interactive way and learn something that engages your critical thinking skills. Whatever it is, don’t forget to pencil in some time for some serious learning!
I’m sure you’ve heard about the numerous scientifically proven benefits of meditation by now. Meditation is a way to de-stress and better understand your own thoughts and emotions. Often, it can seem like a complex practice, but it doesn’t have to be. All you have to do is sit down in a quiet spot somewhere, get comfortable, and start breathing more mindfully. Just breathe, relax your muscles, and observe your thoughts pass through your mind as you would observe a train going by if you were by the railway tracks. Breathe in, breathe out, count your breaths, and be mindful of your thoughts. Just be the silent observer and after a few minutes – it could be for 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or even 30 minutes – slowly bring your focus back to your body. That’s all there is to it in a nutshell!
Have a Singing/Dancing Party:
There is something so freeing about letting words flow from your lips and letting your body move to the rhythm of music! Set aside some time to turn up the music and just let yourself go. Carve out a small piece of alone time for yourself where it’s just you and the music and then, let loose! Feel the freedom flowing through your veins and dance and sing away even if it’s just for a few minutes. It’s sure to leave you feeling energized and revitalized!
These are just a few ideas out of many! There are so many wonderful ways to make yourself feel loved. You don’t need anybody else to make you happy or make you feel loved because you should already be cultivating those feelings within yourself. Self-care should never be neglected, and it’s important to give yourself occasional reminders when you forget to put yourself first. Facing the outside world from a place of self-love allows you to spread that sense of love and contentment wherever you go, and that’s a beautiful thing – just as beautiful as YOU are!