Self-care, you know what it is but why is it so hard to prioritize? We all know that self-care is important. We have all been told that we must first take care of ourselves before we take care of others. Easier said than done. As we start another new year and take some time to evaluate our lives, our health, and where we are going—consider making this year about self-care.
We know it can be intimidating to think about carving out more time in your day for you when you are already so busy. That is why we have come up with a list of ways you can prioritize self-care without unraveling life as you know it. At Rooted & Rising, we are always touting the essential need for self-care. If you need help figuring out how to incorporate more care for yourself into your days, we are here for you.
Here are some tips to get you started:
1.) Take care of the basics.
Often we think of self-care as getting a massage, a facial, or going on a luxury retreat. And, while those are all true, self-care can actually be much simpler, inexpensive, and accessible to anyone. Start by making your basic needs a priority. If you are feeling drained, make the effort to go to bed earlier or drink more water. If you feel sluggish or unmotivated, try to eat healthier or take more walks in the fresh air. If you are overwhelmed, allow yourself to say “no,” participate in self-reflection, write down your feelings. These are attainable ways to feel better in your life.
2.) Nurture face-to-face connection and unplug.
As humans we all need connection. Yet, so often we are buried in our devices. We are more technologically connected yet emotionally disconnected than ever before. Consider taking a break from devices and nurture more face-to-face interactions. Research shows that such connection can be healing. Invite friends over for coffee, put devices away at night and play games with your kids instead, have meal times as a family whenever possible.
3.) Name your emotions.
The simple act of naming and acknowledging your emotions can have a big impact on helping us to manage those feelings. Saying things like “I feel frustrated because my boss keeps giving all the special projects to other people,” or “I am disappointed that you didn’t ask me first,” or “I am sad that I cannot change this.” You don’t have to say these things to other people, just yourself. Write them in a journal. Say them to yourself in a mirror and allow yourself the time to process them. So often we ignore our true feelings about things and try to continue on, only causing more stress.
4.) Practice being present.
We are all so busy all the time. We are frequently stuck thinking about what is happening next, or what we need to do to get through the next event. We are missing the here and now. There is a lot of joy that can be found in simply being in the moment. Taking in what is around you can be a great gift. Watching the interactions between your kids, the cuddles of your pets, witnessing the kindness of others, the warmth of a blanket, etc. It can all bring joy.
5.) Let your emotions be your guide.
Now that you have named your emotions, what are they telling you? Do you need a night to yourself? Are you too stressed to tackle that project? Could you use a social media break? Let them tell you where to go next and what you should do to care for yourself. Listen to you for a change.
6.) Tackle the mundane.
There are many mundane tasks that are important to our health and happiness. Let yourself get them done. Things like scheduling doctor’s visits, cleaning your home, filing paperwork, paying bills, etc. It is ok to carve out a weekend to get it all taken care of. I guarantee you some relief will follow.
These are just a few tips to help you prioritize self-care in your life. If you struggle with taking care of yourself, consider seeking the help of a licensed mental health professional who can help to create a plan that works for you.
Ready to begin counseling in PA?
The professionally trained and licensed counselors at Rooted & Rising Therapy in Bridgeville have openings. Our practice specializes in treating individuals through years of experience, we’re confident that no problem is too great to overcome. Through therapy, there is always a way to address the issues you face and learn coping strategies to help you both right now and in the future. Just call our office at (412) 228-8489 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started to feeling better today. We are here for you.