Sometimes we need a good reminder of the simple ways we can practice self-care. These 7 daily self-care habits will easily help you feel your best.
I think we can all agree that self-care looks a little different for everyone. But regardless of the things that make you feel good and happy, we all need it and we all deserve it.
Our lives are often pretty darn hectic and our endless list of responsibilities makes it hard to prioritize certain things. Self-care is often one that slips onto the back burner, but sometimes we just need to find a way to squeeze in some time for self-care practices. Because the truth is that when we do, we’re able to show up and be our best for our family, friends, and at our jobs. Life just flows a little easier when we care for ourselves, and that’s what these 7 habits are all about.
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This one is so simple yet so effective when it comes to improving our mental (and physical) wellbeing. Walking regularly is one of my favourite things to do because it’s relatively easy, it doesn’t cost anything, and it always feels good.
Walking for many of us is also a form of meditation, especially if you’re able to add some nature into the mix. A body of water, a forest or a park, pop in some headphones or just simply listen to the sounds around you. You’ll feel so good afterwards, I promise.
Eat Without Distractions
Put your phone away and turn off the TV when you’re eating. Why? Being present with the food in front of you can actually improve digestion as it helps you slow down and chew more thoroughly, plus you can enjoy the conversations with the people you may be eating with.
Being present while eating is a component of Intuitive Eating. You can learn more about that here.
Slow Down your Bedtime Routine
I think we all rush our bedtime routines pretty often. You know, the tedious task of brushing your teeth or washing your face? It can seem very boring or annoying to have to even do it at times, but something that I started doing is slowing down the process altogether.
We can turn the process into one that’s relaxing for us, even if it’s only 5 or 10 minutes. I’ll often take the time to place a hot washcloth on my face, properly remove my makeup, and slowly massage my favourite face oils onto my face. Sort of like a spa moment. I’ll also take this time to brush my teeth and floss properly, instead of rushing it.
We aren’t going to be in the mood to do this every night, but even slowing things down just once a week can help us appreciate a small self-care session and even sleep better as a result, too.
Take a Time Out
We’ve all got a lot on our plates a lot of the time, but carving out a little time-out for yourself can have lasting benefits. This might mean saying no to certain requests, delaying not-so-urgent tasks, or getting up slightly earlier so that you can squeeze in some you-time doing the things that you absolutely love doing, for no other reason than you need this for yourself.
Take a moment to reflect on the things that bring you the most joy as everybody is different. Here are some great time-out activities:
- making a hot cup of tea
- running a hot bath
- getting creative (artwork, sewing, crafting, baking, etc.)
- calling up a friend
Taking a time-out may also be none of those at all, and instead… doing nothing. Just sitting with your feet up or lying on the couch. Whatever it is for you, remember that you deserve a time-out sometimes.
Eat Your Greens
There are countless ways for us to support our health via fruits and vegetables, but I want to keep this one simple. And that’s to just eat some greens with at least one meal per day.
Greens such as kale, spinach, lettuces and broccoli are all rich in chlorophyll and minerals such as magnesium and calcium. Greens are pretty amazing things, and we always feel good when we eat ’em. Here are some ways you can include them in your meals:
Add greens to smoothies or sautéed with eggs, scrambled, or in an omelette.
Eat some salad or throw greens into soups, stews, stir-fries or pasta sauces
- Kale Beet Detox Salad
- Carrot Cinnamon Detox Salad
- Harvest Salad
- Tomato Spaghetti Squash Pasta
- Winter Chicken & Rice Stew
Creating boundaries for ourselves is so important, because when we don’t have them, we welcome more stress and more uncomfortable situations into our lives by not identifying what’s too much for us. Honouring how we feel about things, what you will and will not accept, and putting yourself first is sometimes what needs to happen for us to feel our best.
Start by identifying the things that bring you the most stress and go from there. Taking on too much responsibility or letting people take advantage of you or treat you negatively. Ask yourself what it is about certain people or situations that make you feel uneasy.
Taking a moment to reflect on what’s unacceptable for us can help us understand our limits. Executing the boundaries we create (which means saying no sometimes!) can mean being assertive, but don’t let that stop you from doing what you gotta do. Assertiveness takes practice, but there are opportunities each day for us to set our boundaries in a respectful way.
Stimulate Your Brain
Self-care is often about slowing down and doing less, but it’s also about stimulating our brain in positive ways. Learning something do, watching an interesting documentary, reading a thought-provoking article or book, having interesting conversations, walking around a new neighbourhood or taking a different route to work are all ways that we can stimulate our brain.
It’s easy to get stuck in the same day-to-day routines where we wake up, get dressed, go to work, come home, eat dinner, and do it all over again. But stimulating our brain in these ways helps to support cognitive function, mental acuity, and create new neurological pathways. It’s cool stuff, and it feels really good.
Self-care is a big part of our wellbeing and I hope these habits can inspire you to find some time to care for yourself more often. I’m curious — what’s one self-care habit you have?