Quick Guide to Self-care
You’re a successful businessperson, a super organized stay-at-home parent, a family caregiver, or... Maybe you are filling more than one role. Chances are you are many things to many people. It’s okay, everything in your life is under control (sort of) and you’re taking great care of yourself, right? Let’s check:
Are you eating well?
Are you controlling stress?
Are you taking good care of your body?
Are you taking regular breaks and socializing?
You Forgot About You
It’s not surprising. Generation X has been referred to as, “the forgotten generation,” and that is particularly true when it comes to our own health. We’re a busy generation that puts puts work and others ahead of our own health and wellness.
Guess what, there’s nothing more important than taking care of yourself.
You need to be strong, healthy, and happy to keep doing all the great things you do in life. Health and wellness require self-care. It is time to start prioritizing yourself.
You don’t need to spend a ton of money, follow complicated rituals, or even leave your house. Support the basics (mind, body, and spirit) without adding complications to your life.
There's no doubt that life can be stressful. Uncontrolled stress leads to several health issues, including panic attacks, insomnia, high blood pressure and worse. The good news is that dealing with stress and worry can be as simple as taking a few deep breaths.
Research shows that deep breathing causes the body to have a “relaxation response” that counteracts stress related issues. Follow these simple steps for immediate stress relief:
Close your eyes to remove the stimulation from your surroundings
Breath in – use a count of 4-5Hold your breath – just a couple of seconds
Blow out – make the exhale a little longer than the inhale.
Do you feel better?
During this exercise, be sure to inhale and exhale fully. Some experts say it’s best to inhale and exhale through your nose only, but colds and allergies can make breathing through your mouth the best option. Don’t overthink it.
How often are you grabbing food on the run, skipping exercise, and losing sleep? Stop it!
Skip “fast” and packaged foods. Instead make large batches of nutritious food that can be frozen. Soups, pastas, and rice dishes are natural choices for freezing. They have long shelf lives and reheat well. Food is the foundation of your health; treat it that way.
Use moderate exercise to create energy in your body. This will make all your chores much easier. Something as simple as stretching can make the difference. Try basic exercises like sit-ups, push-ups, and squats. Modify push-ups for beginners by using the edge of a cupboard or a sink. The Internet is full of great guidance on basic exercise.
Your body needs love through self-care. Simplified self-care routines are better than nothing at all. Get your body well fueled and moving; nurture your soul.
It’s not necessarily our duties and daily tasks that cause us to feel stressed and overworked, but our perception of those duties. If you don’t take care of your own spirit, everything else will feel like hard work. It’s important to know what makes you feel nurtured, loved, and well cared for.
Prayer and/or meditation are great ways to reconnect with yourself. The constant physical and mental demands of life can cause us to feel fractured and abused. We need to take time for ourselves to be quiet, and to reconnect with our own needs.
Be sure to have fun. PLAY! Call a friend, toss a ball in the air, doodle on a piece of paper. Do anything that isn’t necessary and gives you joy. Life is short, make sure that you’re caring for yourself as well as you care for others.