Do you remember when you were small how you were immersed in your own world?
You could spend all the time you want for yourself, doing what you love.
But as you welcomed adulthood, you often get caught in the hurry burry of life and forget to give yourself the importance you deserve.
It is only when you experience a break down you get a wake-up call and think about yourself. People are busier than ever, and the importance of self-care activities is a trending topic these days and rightfully so.
But self-care is not something you do because it is trending. You do it because you love and care for yourself and it must be made a way of life.
I hear you. You don’t have time.
It’s true. You may have more pressing matters. If your boss demands you to work overtime, the first thing you would skip is yoga class or you compromise on your family time.
I have learned that the only way to get anything done is to make it a priority. Write it down. Put it somewhere you can see every day so that you feel obliged.
You need to implement self-care in all areas of life to maintain a balance. To know more, you can read this article on what self-care is and the different areas of life you should implement self-care.
Here are some self-care ideas you can implement in your life to refresh yourself and bring out the best in you. I have listed them in categories for the ease of reading.
These self-care ideas should be made part of your normal life. You can choose any tiny self-care activity for each day and do it. Remember, most of the activities take only a few minutes.
Physical self-care ideas
- Sitting is the new smoking. The human body was made to move, so always give yourselves reason to move across your house or wherever you are. Especially if your work involves sitting a lot, get up and take some steps every 30 minutes.
- Play a sport you love.
- If you stay indoors more, get out in the sun for at least 15 minutes to soak up some vitamin D.
- Do 10-15 squats in the shower.
- Drink more water.
- Go for a nature walk on the weekend.
- Get a massage.
- Have a healthy delicious meal with lots of greens.
- Drink smoothies.
- Have vitamin supplements if necessary.
- Put on a detoxifying face mask.
- Take a power nap.
- Make sure you include more fruits and veggies in your diet every week.
- Go hiking and camping.
- Do stretching exercises or yoga.
- Go for a swim. Swimming helps to relieve stress and relax.
- Take a warm bath. Turn off the lights and light candles around.
- Practice Pranayama (deep breathing exercise). Read this article on the benefits of Pranayama.
- Drink green tea.
- Increase strength by doing weight training exercises.
- Have an Epsom salt bath. An Epsom salt bath helps to ease stress and reduce inflammation and pain. Read the benefits of Epsom salt bath here.
- Learn a martial art. It’s a great way to move your body and useful for self-defense too.
- Play water sports with your friends.
- Experiment with your hair. Get a new haircut or get your hair colored with a color you have always wanted to try.
- As beneficial it is to wake up early, sleep in on some days to recover from any sleep debt you have.
- On Sundays, prepare healthy snacks for the week so that when you want to munch on something, you have healthy options available.
- Get a facial.
Mental/Emotional self-care ideas
- Start every day on a positive note. When you wake up, feel gratitude and say positive affirmations like ‘ Today is a great day’, ‘Today I focus on what makes me feel good’ or ‘Today I will make progress towards my goals’.
- Take a 10-minute mindful break to stare at nature through your window. It can be greenery, rain or even clouds.
- Stop being a people pleaser and learn to say ‘NO’.
- Schedule “me time” in your journal to do any of the self-care activities. Sometimes, scheduling is the way to get it done.
- Read fiction for 30 minutes.
- When you take a break, indulge in creative hobbies like crochet, sewing, art journaling, doodling etc.
- Coloring is a stress buster. Buy adult coloring books.
- Create a memories page in your journal.
- Always learn new things or hobbies to engage your brain. You can either learn from free Youtube videos, blogs or paid courses.
- Play memory games.
- Use these apps to learn something new every day.
- Start journaling habit to record your thoughts, memories and to brain dump. When you feel overwhelmed, you can do a brain dump in your journal and get clarity.
- Grow your own food (as per your space limitations) in your backyard or balcony. And engage yourself in gardening activities.
- Go for a vacation.
- Go for a day trip in your local area or parks.
- Have a good cry and release all your pent-up emotions.
- Forgive someone you hold a grudge against. You will instantly feel the weight lifting from your mind.
- Always hang out with positive people who are supportive of your dreams. Avoid pessimistic people who have no growth aspirations for life.
- Watch comedy videos on Youtube and have a good laugh.
- Binge watch TV shows on Netflix (of course you should know when to stop).
- Be mindful of how you talk to yourself. Avoid self-loathing words and be gentle.
- Avoid bottling up your emotions and have a close friend or family member to confide in.
- If necessary, consult with a therapist and take medication.
- Set healthy boundaries and tell people gently about what you can/can’t do.
- Write down the compliments people give you. Read them when you feel dispirited.
- Do a digital detox.
- List all the achievements you have had in life, big and small in a paper/journal. When you feel down, it will be there to remind that life is not all bad.
- Learn a new language.
- Go to a restaurant to try a new cuisine with your friends.
- Try aromatherapy. It has benefits like helping to relieve stress, increases energy levels, improves sleep and immunity, relieves pain etc.
- Declutter your home. Give away all the unused clothes, toys or any other item you haven’t used in the last year. Decluttering clears your mind and boosts your mood.
- If you can afford, hire help at least once in a while to have some “me time” or “family time”. Choose a day as “grandparent’s day” so that your kids get to cuddle with them and you can have fun with your girlfriends.
- Go on an impromptu long drive to somewhere you have never been to. It’s a refreshing break from the boring daily commutes you take.
- Unfollow all the negative people on social media.
- Unsubscribe yourself from all the blogs/websites that don’t entice you anymore. Save yourself from the digital clutter.
- Eat brain foods.
Spiritual self-care ideas
Spiritual self-care need not be something that relates to your religion. It can also be activities that you do to help connect with your spirit or soul, find meaning in your life and grow as a person. You cannot love others unless you love yourself first.
- Practice mindfulness meditation daily for at least 10 minutes.
- Volunteer for a cause that matters to you or donate money to an organization.
- Practice affirmations.
- Create morning rituals that include affirmations, visualization, journaling, and gratitude.
- Spend a day without complaining, no matter how much frustrated you are.
- Every day, write 3 things you are grateful for.
- Write 10 things you love about yourself.
- Spend time alone in self-reflection. Have a random and meaningful conversation with yourself. Connect with your passion.
- Investing in yourself is the best investment. Have a mentor, take online courses and always strive to improve yourself.
- Take a day off from all the devices to indulge in spiritual self-care ideas.
- Watch motivational TED videos on Youtube.
- Cheer for yourself when you accomplish something.
- Create a vision board with all the happy things you want to materialize in life.
- Stop using all the social media channels you don’t need anymore and delete those accounts. Use that precious time to get out in nature and for all the self-care ideas you have wanted to do. You will be surprised by how much time you save.
- Fast for a day and refrain from negative thoughts for a spiritual cleanse.
Social self-care ideas
Like all the other self-care ideas, relationship self-care activities also need to be done on a daily basis for smooth functioning of relationships. No man is an island. Hence, let’s indulge in some self-care activities to nurture our relationships.
- At the end of the day, share the peak and pit in your day with your partner. It strengthens the communication between you two and helps to create strong bonds.
- Encourage children to speak about their day and listen without judging so that you gain their trust in opening up whenever they need.
- Go to a movie with friends or family.
- Visit your parents and surprise them with a gift.
- Call close friends or family members to say hi.
- Have a date night with your spouse once a month.
- Help your friends or family members in need.
- Have one-on-one time (at least 15 mins) with each of your kids daily.
- Hug your loved ones. Studies have proved that hugging reduces stress and boosts your immune system.
- Visit the less fortunate in orphanages, nursing homes etc. and do little things to brighten up their day. Such acts brighten up your mind too which in turn help in increasing your happiness and self-love.
- Make meals for the homeless and deliver to them.
- Bake cookies and give away to your neighbors.
- Buy gifts for someone you love and surprise them.
- Learn to forgive and forget. Solve any conflicts you have with anyone. Emotional baggage hinders your peace of mind, affects your mood and overall wellness.
- Handwrite letters to your loved ones on their special day expressing gratitude for their presence in your life.
- Call all your friends you haven’t met in a while and get together to laugh over old times.
- Go through your old photos with family and share those memories. I am sure it will invoke laughter and funny moments.
- Play board/card games as a family.
- Do workouts with your kids. Let them have their own workout clothes. It’s a great way to connect with your kids and inculcate good habits in them.
- Take your kids out to a theme park.
- Take a road trip with old friends.
- Have at least one meal a day together as a family.
- Have a family cooking time. Bake a cake or a pizza with kids and let them help you.
What do you think about these self-care ideas? What would you add to the list? Please comment below.
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