Life is full of stressful situations! One day you can be happy, elated and over the moon – you had a good day, got all your jobs done, feel on track and in control of everything, can’t stop smiling, you’re winning at life!! And the next day you can be the most miserable grump ever – stressing, quiet, frustrated, feeling completely down about everything, can’t even force a smile! This is just life.
Self care has become so important to me, I need to make time for myself on a regular basis. I am a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a midwife, and mum to my puppy. But I also need to remember that first and foremost I am me…and without taking care of myself I am useless to everybody else in my life!
So in the past few months I have tried every day to take a moment to engage with myself, to listen to my body and figure out what I need. I make sure that I rest or regroup with myself when I feel like I need to. Sometimes the housework just has to wait another day!
I would encourage all of you to make some time for self care on a regular basis if you don’t already, it really does just give you some R&R from life and allows you to recharge your batteries. Women are superheroes, we can keep going because we have to…as long as everybody else is taken care of, we can get by. But why should we? We are important too! And we need to start believing that.
I have put together 12 self care ideas that I find particularly helpful, however, it really is personal preference. What may work for one person isn’t guaranteed to work for another person, and it just depends what you find relaxing.
- Home pamper day/evening
This is my main go to if I need a MAJOR self care session, normally when I want to feel better about myself. It primarily consists of a hot bubble bath and hair wash with all of my favourite products. I will also treat myself to a face mask (normally a Lush product), shave, pluck and moisturise generously, and give myself a home style mani/pedi. After this session I feel totally cleansed and rejuvenated, guaranteed to make me feel like a new woman!
2. Self date
I love a little self date every now and again, when I just want a little time to myself to organise my thoughts. Ideas for a self date can include: coffee, lunch/brunch, cinema, long walk or even dinner. I can’t say I’ve braved a dinner self date as of yet, but perhaps one day with a bit more confidence. I find that I feel very calm and engaged with myself following a self date.
We all know that exercise is great for the mind. It releases endorphins and suppresses the stress hormone, cortisol. I’ve recently found enjoyment in yoga as my exercise of choice. It’s a great choice for people with anxiety as it focuses heavily on breathing and feeling centred. As with a self date, I find that I feel very calm and engaged with myself following yoga. I sleep amazingly well and wake up feeling refreshed and ready for anything!
This could almost be grouped together with yoga. Meditation can be difficult for a beginner. When I first started I found that I struggled to sit still, and to completely let go and embrace the meditation. But over time, this has become easier. Meditation is about being present in the moment and being more mindful, and I find I have more productive days if I don’t skip my meditation, as I feel motivated to make use of my time and live my life. The meditation app I use is “Headspace” and I highly rate it, especially for beginners.
5. Read a book
Sometimes I find myself restless if I choose to read a book when I know that I have other things I need to do, so I may choose to use one of my other ideas for self care if I have a lot on my mind. But I mainly use this one if I just need a break from my usual entertainment – TV/computer/phone screens. It’s a double whammy really because it gives you a break from technology, but it also gives you a break from noise.
6. Movie night
Movie nights are extremely fun, especially at this time of year!! I go all out and get popcorn and hot chocolate, get into my comfies, light candles etc. It’s super relaxing and feels like a proper date. One of my favourite self care ideas if I have the time to dedicate to it.
De-cluttering is an actual need of mine. I cannot relax if I feel cluttered in my life – this could be my physical surroundings and/or my mind. If I need to, I will dedicate some time to tidying the space around me, or if I’ve got a lot of thoughts spinning around in my head, I normally de-clutter in the form of journaling or meditation.
This one I will use if I have a day off and have the time to leisurely get ready in the mornings. I put on a “feel good” playlist and dance and sing around my bedroom whilst I get ready. Guaranteed to be uplifting and give me positive vibes for the day.
I love making tasty treats, and now that I have a dishwasher it doesn’t cause me stress like it used to, so I like to use this one more often now! Not only do I get to eat my creations but it makes my house smell in.cred.ib.le!!
10. Book a massage/facial/hair appointment
This is another one which makes me feel like a new woman! I love being pampered, so if I have a bit more money to spare, you can bet your ass I’m going to treat myself!
11. Treat yourself to a new outfit/pair of shoes/handbag
I’ve already mentioned this one briefly, but I often have to get my thoughts out, so journaling or blogging works for me in this way. A big session followed by a sleep always makes me feel much calmer the next day.
So there you have it – my top 12 self care ideas. I hope this helps some of you to realise that you are important, and it’s totally 100% acceptable and necessary to take care of yourself sometimes and gives you some cheap and cheerful ideas on how to do so.
Love Loz x