Practicing self-care is a choice we all make – it’s the decision that we will prioritize time and energy to care about our mind, body, and spirit.
Self-care is any choice we make to take care of our physical, emotional, or mental health. It’s not something we force ourselves to do – it’s renewing and refueling.
Self-Care isn’t Selfish – It’s Essential
Self-care is not selfish. We aren’t hurting other people to better ourselves. We all work so hard and sometimes we need to take even just a few minutes to nourish ourselves before we continue to give to others!
Learning to take great care of ourselves is an incremental process, so don’t feel the need to stress over what you are or aren’t doing. Here are twenty ways to practice self-care for your emotional, physical, and mental health.
Self-care is not something you need to force yourself to do. If it doesn’t feel right, trust your intuition and skip it.
Sometimes self-care can be as easy as saying no to something that feels stressful or taxing, and what you choose for self-care might be different than what someone else does.
Easy Self-Care Ideas
Here are twenty ways to practice self-care for your emotional, physical, and mental health.
- Go for a walk in nature. Don’t wear headphones – soak in the sounds and try to notice the small things. Note things that make you smile.
- Get a full night’s sleep. Unplug from your electronics at least an hour before bed and try to get at least 7 hours of sleep.
- Drink a warm cup of tea or coffee. Savor a warm drink – let yourself simply sit and enjoy it in silence.
- Do some yoga. Yoga is calming and helps people have a better body image.
- Have a spa day at home. You can DIY your own products or purchase cult-favorite spa products for a relaxing time of self-pampering.
- Detox from your electronics. Unplug from your screens and devices – it will help you think more clearly and sleep better.
- Get a massage. Massages help reduce stress and anxiety and can help with muscle pain.
- Write in a journal. Either choose journal prompts or just write about your day. Letting it all out on paper can be very therapeutic.
- Declutter 10 things you no longer want. Finally letting go of things you no longer need or want feels great.
- Cook a meal you love. Cook something you enjoy – not based on calories or what you think you should eat, but something you love and will feel nourished from.
- Ask a friend or loved one for a hug. Hugging can open up communication, reduce anxiety and fear, and makes us happier!
- Light a candle that you love. Light a candle that smells great or just looks pretty and enjoy its soothing glow.
- Try an art project. Getting hands-on with something like painting, sketching, ceramics, or knitting allows your mind to relax and get creative.
- Dance for 15 minutes. Put on your favorite music and move your body!
- Take a relaxing bath. Relax with some calming bath salt and a bath pillow (we love this one!) to feel refreshed.
- Write down a gratitude list. Write down 10 to 15 things you are grateful for and check in with how you feel. Lots of people do this on a daily basis.
- Meditate. Spend 10 to 30 minutes quieting your mind. Try this a few times a week or once daily and you’ll immediate results. Use a meditation app if you are new to meditation.
- Go to an art museum. Go to a museum with things you love to look at and immerse yourself.
- Take a refreshing nap. Little, 15 to 20-minute power naps can feel so good! They can help perk you up for the afternoon as well.
- Spend time with animals. If you love animals, find a way to be around them. Either adopt a pet, volunteer at a shelter, or visit a friend with animals.
Making Self-Care a Habit
Learning to take great care of ourselves is an incremental process, so don’t feel the need to stress over what you are or aren’t doing. Don’t let self-care be something you make yourself feel guilty about – take it one day at a time.
Your self-care routine and habits might look different from other people’s and that’s okay. You need to choose the frequency and type of self-care that works for you.
Sometimes people need just 15 minutes and other people need to be on their own for a full weekend focusing on their needs. The important thing is to be mindful of what you need and how you’ll make sure you get the time to do it.
Have more self-care ideas? Let us know in the comments below.