Self-care is not as elusive as it once was. And what’s more, it is not only required but also necessary. Luckily, however, self-care is now beginning to be widely accepted as a staple of healthy living. Taking some time for yourself, be it yoga, meditation, fitness, or even a good, long, relaxing bath, will help you get through the day and keep yourself healthy in the process.
Nevertheless, there are still a lot of people out there, hard-working moms, workaholics, diligent students, you name it, who are always looking at self-care as something indulgent and over-permissive. If they are not working until near exhaustion, they don’t feel like they are deserving or that they are somehow slacking off.
Well, the fact of the matter is that it’s not. In fact, giving yourself some time to unwind and relax is healthy, necessary, and it doesn’t even need to be time-consuming.
What Is Self-Care?
Self-care can take on many shapes and sizes, and it can be unique to every one of us. It is anything and everything that makes us happy, confident, and feeling whole. Yoga, light physical exercises, showering, traveling, reading, clothes shopping, listening to music, or meditating are, among many others, examples of self-care.
The beauty here is that the more you take care of yourself, the better and brighter your days will become. Do it regularly, and you will not want to change a thing. And as luck would have it, the only person standing in your way from investing more time in yourself is you.
Eliminate Distractions and Time Wasters
The reason so many people do not take the necessary time for themselves is that they feel they don’t have enough time, to begin with. But unbeknownst to us, there are plenty of time wasters and distractions around us that eat up a lot of our time.
Stop checking your emails regularly. Stop multitasking. Delegate more. Start saying NO from time to time. Keep yourself organized. Stop inviting interruptions like sending texts to friends while at work. They are a few examples of what you can do to save up on time. You’ll be surprised how much time is wasted on trivial things.
Establish a Routine
Like with any habit, it is hard to start and keep yourself motivated. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to the issue, but it is best to start with it the moment you arise in the morning. Wake up gently and happily, and don’t rush anything. Then you will be sufficiently energized to start your day properly.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Self-care shouldn’t be seen as a chore, but quite the opposite. Make it an effortless experience by preparing your space ahead of time. Do not let yourself be tempted in checking your emails or social media, as these are nothing more than distractions, at this point.
Last but not least, you will need to give yourself enough time to complete the routine without rushing it. In the beginning, you may feel that you’ve “wasted” too much of your time by taking some for yourself, but don’t give in to that temptation. We suggest you start with around 20 minutes of self-care per day; then move to 30 to 60 minutes as you get more comfortable. You can even spread this time throughout the day into three 20-minute periods – one in the morning, one at lunch, and the other in the evening. It is only 4% of the day, by the way, which you dedicated solely to yourself. That doesn’t sound like much now, does it?
It’s the little things that make life beautiful, and self-care is just an expression of that. Do not be afraid to be happy and whole; otherwise, you’ll regret it. If you want to learn more about self-care, a great place to start is with your habits of thinking. Take my Habit Finder assessment to see how you really think about thinking. It’s truly metacognition at it’s best and scientifically measured. http://www.habitfindercoach.com/debcrowe