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What is self-care?

Self-care is making small, but mindful decisions to take care of your body, mind, and soul.

I used to think that self-care needed to be big, extravagant, and time-consuming. I now realize self-care can be done with the tiniest action. All it requires is a bit of mindfulness. These are a few of the ways that I practice self-care on an (almost) daily basis but at least once a week. If you’re struggling with living a healthier lifestyle these are a great place to start making small decisions to care about yourself more.

(THIS POST PROBABLY CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. OUR FULL DISCLOSURE POLICY IS REALLY LONG AND BORING, BUT YOU CAN FIND IT HERE.)

1. Drink more water.

I try and drink 1 gallon of water every day. That may seem daunting to you so try and drink a half gallon. I am NOT one of those people that can shamelessly walk around with a legit gallon of water every day so I use a 32-ounce Hydro Flask and fill it up four times a day. *Disclaimer* you will pee A LOT. Be prepared.

2. Go for a walk.

Going for a walk outside keeps me sane. Seriously. Being in nature is so rejuvenating. Now that I have a full-time job I have a hard time finding time to walk during the day so I’ve dedicated my hour lunch break to go for a walk. Sitting all day makes me very tired but since I’ve begun walking I have found that I have so much more energy to go about the rest of my day.

3. Make a beautiful, healthy meal.

4. Explore somewhere new.

5. Stretch when you wake up.

Stretching in the morning is a perfect example of practicing mindful health. I have a terrible habit of waking up and grabbing my phone to see what I’ve missed on Instagram. When you wake up and stretch you’re thinking about your body. Assessing what it needs and preparing it for the day ahead. Instagram can wait! *preaches to self*

6. Be slow to respond to negativity.

What I mean by this is to chew on the negativity. Really think about it. Is it coming from someone who loves you? Is it warranted? How can you respond in a peaceful way? The reason I put this on self-care is that when you’re stressed out trying to fight for yourself and what you think you deserve you create all sorts of inward turmoil. Be slow in your response and try to create an atmosphere of peace knowing that you may or may not be able to change that negativity but that’s okay.

7. Light a candle.

8. Clean out a messy space.

Organization puts me in such a happy place. I feel free and energized. This may not be the same for you during the process but you will feel better after you do it. If it’s too overwhelming have a friend come and help you.

9. Commit to trying something new and stick with it.

10. Try a new workout class.

Try a new type of yoga to relax or Soul Cycle if you want to get pumped.

11. Call a close friend.

12. Pick Flowers.

13. Take a long bath.

Take a bath but make it a special one. Put some effort into it. I like to put some lavender essential oils or make a detox bath for added flair.

14. Learn a new skill.

15. Serve someone in need.

I always find that helping someone always gives me so much joy and just fills my cup up. Not so that I am able to toot my own horn but serving people really just makes me so happy. This can be done in such a small capacity too like opening the door for someone or going the extra mile (or a half mile) for someone when they didn’t ask you to and it wasn’t expected.

16. List 10 things you’re thankful for.

17. Meditate on your blessings.

Write them down and then think on them. (Any of you Baptists humming a certain Hymn in your head right now?) Meditating on the good can help mold your perspective and give you a more positive and thankful lense to see life through.

18. Tell a trusted friend your goals and dreams.

19. Go through old pictures.

Since moving to LA from Texas I look through pictures ALL THE TIME. Being away from our families can be hard and going through old memories can be so good.

20. Treat yourself to something small like your favorite coffee from the cafe down the street.

21. Read your Bible. Soak in the words.

22. Meditate on scripture.

In the same way that you meditate on your blessings for a more thankful attitude, meditating on scripture can be very helpful. For the Christian, practicing this is essential. We believe that scripture are the words of God given to us and they have power. We meditate on these words so that we can have that power and use it to model a life that looks like Jesus’.

23. Dry Brush your entire body after you shower.

Dry brushing is my absolute favorite self-care ritual. I have a whole post about it linked above if you want to know more about it.

24. Put your phone away 1 hour before bed. Read, stretch, relax.

25. Don’t compare yourself to anyone.

26. Make a to-do list.

This may not be therapeutic for all of you but for me, it’s better than getting a massage. I love having all of my ducks in a row and knowing exactly what I need to do and when I need to do it. Checking off things on that list is like a drug. I will admit to putting things on my to-do list like “go to the bathroom” just so I can cross them off. No judgment, okay?!

27. Hang out with someone inspiring.

28. Try a new supplement you’ve been eyeing.

29. Make healthier skin care purchases.

30. Practice Mindfulness.

“Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to experiences occurring in the present moment.” Be present people! Listen to your body. Listen to the others around you. Pay close attention.

“So then, we must not sleep, like the rest, but we must stay awake and sober-minded.” 1 Thessalonians 5:6

 

What are some ways that you practice self-care? What are things you do that lift your soul up and make you feel better? And lastly, what is something encouraging you would tell someone who is struggling with practicing self-care?

xx, Harley