4 Simple Steps to Exercise Self-Care

It’s easy to forget yourself in the rush to care for everyone else. Here are some small, simple things you can do to exercise self-care and recharge your own batteries.

As women, we often forget ourselves. In the rush to care for everyone else, we forget that we too are deserving of care. Giving of yourself comes from a source, but what happens when that source is empty? Here are four small ways to look after yourself that can make a big difference in filling up your own cup.

  1. Carve out some alone time

It can seem like finding a minute to yourself is the hardest thing, but whether it’s having a cup of tea by yourself or lying on your bed with a book, even a small amount of alone time can be extremely beneficial. “I like to take a walk during lunch time, spend a little time in nature,” says financial manager Kristin Kenmuir. Not in the mood for a walk? Kerri from Johannesburg says, “I read my book in a quiet spot away from the office and it makes such a difference to my day.” This is especially true if you are even slightly introverted, says author Jenn Granneman. “Taking more time for yourself has the ironic effect of ultimately making your relationships better,” she says.

  1. Meditate

If you’ve not tried out meditation yet, we recommend you do. The human mind is an incredible place, and we’re assaulted with millions of images, words, impressions, choices, decisions and impulses every single day. Meditation has recently experienced a revival as people learn the benefits of quieting the mind, such as reducing anxiety. Travel writer Sarah Gurney says, “I do a 10-minute meditation each morning before work. It’s incredible the difference it makes in my day!” If you don’t know where to start, try downloading a guided meditation app on your phone.

  1. Be creative

As a kid, you might have spent hours drawing or carefully constructing a sandcastle, but these days you’re probably more focused on being productive at work. But creativity is a great way to relax your mind and body without zoning out completely, the way you would while watching TV. Capetonian mom Kelly says, “Instead of lying on the couch, exhausted, watching TV and scrolling through my phone in the evening, I crochet. It makes me feel like I’m being productive and creative while relaxing.” According to psychotherapist Carolyn Mehlomakulu, making time for art can be excellent self-care, as it has been shown to lower cortisol (stress hormone) levels.

  1. Pamper yourself

If you feel like this one might be out of your league, hang on. Pampering can be as simple as a face mask and a cup of tea at home, or as lavish as a spa day at a salon. What you do is up to you, but it’s the time that you take for yourself that’s important. “I make a fuss of painting my nails and doing a hair or face mask weekly,” says student filmmaker Hybré VM.

“I light candles in my bedroom and sit around in my big fluffy robe writing until it’s time to shower all the products off.”

Next time you’re feeling a little lost or on the edge of losing your cool, try a couple of these small, simple ways to take care of yourself – you’ll soon see if it makes a difference in your life.

Sources:

  1. 7 Ways Spending Time Alone Will Change Your Life: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-secret-lives-introverts/201712/7-ways-spending-time-alone-will-change-your-life
  2. The 10 Minutes A Day That Can Change Your Life: https://www.psycom.net/10-minutes-that-can-change-your-life
  3. Art and Self-Care: http://creativityintherapy.com/2016/08/art-self-care/

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