What is Self-Care?
During the past eighteen months since the ongoing pandemic, we keep hearing the words “Self-Care,” but what does this essentially mean?
Simply, self-care refers to ongoing activities to look after your physical, emotional and mental health. Looking after yourself through consistent and helpful behaviours to help protect your health when life gets hard.
Self-care is unique to each person and activities will be based on what brings enjoyment. We see this all the time people trying to run for physical health, but they loathe it, there is no point doing an activity if you do not enjoy it. What works for one person in the form of self-care might not work for the next person”. In short, it’s important to be aware of your own needs.
It’s especially important to take time out to protect your mental health as this can affect your physical health. Your mental health can affect more then just your mind, it can also affect your behaviour and your body, increasing risk of long-term illnesses such as acute and chronic diseases such as obesity and low immune systems.
Being in tune with your body and mind can help identify when something such as stress maybe affecting you. Good mental health and wellbeing allows us to live our lives in a positive and meaningful way and cope with life’s changes and challenges.
Below we have listed some examples of self-care which include both health boosting and self-indulgence behaviours, this doesn’t mean you need to go out and spend money on expensive items, its just doing things you enjoy such as, stepping outside and taking a deep breathe.
- Connecting with family and friends - that make you feel comfortable in your own skin.
- Getting regular exercise – could be a walk around the block, yoga or a fitness class
- Eat a balanced diet - nutritious food helps with energy levels and stress management.
- Plan something to look forward to - a night out, dinner or even a holiday.
- Try to spend some quality time for yourself at least weekly away from the usual demands
- Having a bath, reading a book, getting creative, gardening, listening to music.
- Consider being pampered – manicure, massage or any other indulging activity
- Practice regular meditation - 10 mins at the beginning of your day.
Recognising what works for you is the most important thing to ensure that you are looking after yourself and your longevity. Sometimes self-care is easier said then done but being able to relax and destress is imperative towards your health and well-being.