In my blog post “Self-care For Women; What You Need To Know“, I wrote about what self-care is, the importance of self-care, and how to get started with self-care. So, in this post, I want to share with you and elaborate more on 3 strategies that are especially important when taking care of yourself to design a plethora wellness lifestyle.
Before I share with you the self-care strategies, it’s important to understand that:
Self-care is a habit built from the mindset
Taking time to nurture yourself has nothing to do with being selfish. It is about self-care.
Self-care is a habit that is built from the mindset of it being imperative, your responsibility, and a preventative measure to keep you well.
Its effectiveness lies in the constant and ongoing repetition of many tiny habits that in their totality ensure that you are well in mind, body, spirit, and in your life quality.
This is good news because it means that we do not need to take a 2-week vacation, in fact, to be the most effective self-care should be practiced daily, with even the smallest actions having a big impact on our state of mind, and the health of our bodies and spirits, all of which improve our quality of life.
Fortunately, there are many things you can do to engage in self-care. To start, I created a Self-care Assessment Test for your evaluation, and as a bonus, I’ve also added a checklist of self-care ideas, plus 30 powerful affirmations to prepare your mind before you start practicing self-care for a plethora wellness lifestyle.
How AMAZING IS THAT! But before you download this wonderful package, I want you to keep on reading first.
Like achieving any other success, improving your self-care skills requires a strategy, remember that self-care is a deliberate effort.
1. Make you a priority:
Our culture is immersed in this idea that it is selfish to put yourself first. When you are in a relationship, you’re expected to put the needs of someone else first before you act, you should consider their interests and needs. Then you have children, and it’s the same, but an even bigger thing. Suddenly you are in third place behind your partner and kids, maybe even fourth place if you have a job to juggle, too.
Understandably, you want to consider the needs and happiness of others and, normally, you want to ensure they feel understood and heard. However, in loving others, there is room to love yourself. If you don’t love yourself, how on earth can you be expected to love anyone else?
Treat yourself with respect and compassion. This is so simple, if you live your life and make decisions from this simple standpoint, then everything else will fall into place. You will begin to make yourself a priority and look out for your own needs.
2. Don’t apologize for putting you first
Who do you spend the most time with? You. So, why on earth would you ever feel the need to apologize for making yourself a priority? You need to invest in making your passions and goals come true, rather than being completely focused on doing the same for others.
The situations that life throws at you quickly sap your resources, and generally, those situations require time or money. You don’t empty your bank account without topping it up; you need to top yourself up, too. Therefore, when you require some me time, don’t you dare apologize for it. Prioritize yourself so that you can give everyone else what they require.
Putting yourself first pays off:
You know that saying that if you aren’t first, you are last… it’s accurate in this situation because if you don’t put yourself first, you will be last on your agenda, and it will be easier and easier for other things to slide in ahead of you. Here’s how to put yourself first pays off:
Healthy and happy:
The people that you love wants you to be happy and healthy. Now, think about all of your friendships and relationships and how they improve when you feel your best (mentally, emotionally, and physically). Just think about how you feel when you eat well, exercise regularly, and enjoy a good night’s sleep. You will be in far better health when you learn to prioritize your self-care.
Burnout gradually weakens your joy:
When you’re exhausted and overworked, you’re stressed out and wracked with anxiety, so much so that even a relaxing dinner with friends is just another chore to add to your list. Burnout depletes your levels of happy hormones and when you’re in survival mode, you are at greater risk for mental health issues. Learn how to say no to others and say yes to yourself. The truth is, you need a proper break to remember how to be present for the moments that you should be enjoying.
Resting is necessary and essential:
There are probably a bunch of items on your to-do list that you can cross off and forget about, whereas you cannot cross the rest of your list. It can be difficult, though, because you feel that you have to say yes, you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. But, what about your feelings? A failure to rest is going to increase your cortisol levels and just make your situation worse and feed into the vicious cycle of burnout. It’s okay to put yourself first and choose the couch instead of a big night out.
You bring a certain energy to every situation that you are involved in. If you carry angry energy, the people around you will see it, the same as they can feel your happy energy. It doesn’t even have to be that obvious an energy for it to transfer to others. So, be mindful of the fact that your stress and moodiness can transfer to those around you.
3. Making self-care your own
It is important to make your self-care ritual your own. What may work for some women may not be ideal for you. While some women love taking hot baths, others are better served by lifting weights. Some women practice their rituals first thing in the morning, so they get up extra early to do so, while others prefer afternoons or evenings for their rituals.
The point is that the self-care techniques you adopt will help you to de-stress, stay calm, and take good care of yourself.
You do not need any authority to tell you what you need, you are the only one that can answer that question, and this may take some introspection, especially if you have not regularly been in touch with your needs in the past.
You should create a standing appointment with you. Find something that you love and dedicate time to indulge in it, whether it’s painting, writing, or having a manicure/pedicure. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it brings you happiness. Make everyone understand that nothing should be scheduled around this appointment, it’s yours.
Having an activity that you enjoy allows you to relax, de-stress, and ease some emotional tension you experience. You can make a special appointment once a week, but do find quiet time for yourself every day, whether it’s as little as 10 minutes or as much as an hour.
The best thing that you can do for the people in your life is to put yourself first, practice self-care, and be the best you possible. If that means saying no sometimes, then be brave and say no. When your body and mind are trying to tell you to slow down, listen.
I’ve come to believe that self-care is key in coping with challenging and uncertain times. And it is in the moments of uncertainty that we as women that want to design a plethora wellness lifestyle must take extra care of ourselves first before we start to take care of others.
Just as I had to remember myself every day; today, I want you also to remember that you are worth it!! Self-care isn’t escaping from your life, it’s the direct opposite, it’s enjoying it by embracing it for yourself first and then the rest around you.