Self-care is more important than ever. Two years into a global pandemic that upended the world, and anxiety and depression levels are hitting global peaks.
Generally, self-care is taking the time to safeguard and improve your mental and physical health. But the thing is, self-care looks different for everybody. For me, it’s taking a walk on a sunny day to the beach and taking a dive. For you, it might be something totally different.
Maybe you’re not sure what your self-care routine is? We’ve got you covered.
Here are 5 ways to practice self-care:
1-Learn To Say “No”
Let's get the hard one out of the way. There are lots of “Yes-men” and “Yes-women” out there. Are you one of them? It’s ok to say no. You have to ignore the pressure to be a people pleaser, and focus on the things that bring you meaning. You can’t be everywhere at once, and that is okay.
2- Make Time For Yourself:
This ties into saying “no,” but to practice self-care, you need time to practice self-care. Set aside time in your day for you–and spend it however you want. Listen to music, have some quiet time, go for a walk—it's your time. We often spend so much of our time on others that we forget to spend time on ourselves.
3- Find What You Love To Do…Then Do It.
This one is easy: get a hobby. Does gardening relax you? Start planting some flowers. Do you love to paint? Take a painting class. It’s so important to have projects and hobbies that we do solely for ourselves–because they bring peace, calm and serenity. Hobbies bring us joy and enrich our lives. They allow us to learn new skills, to create, to feel, and to express ourselves. Through creativity, we can relive positive emotions, and purge negative emotions.
4- Treat Yourself:
Self-care is treating yourself. It feels great to have a little something special, just for you. Treat yourself to one of your favourite desserts, go on a special trip, or deck out your wardrobe with something you love. Next time you’re feeling worn out, try some good-old-fashioned “retail therapy.” There’s no better feeling than getting yourself something nice and new to wear–like a fabulous new hijab, or a stunning new outfit to go with it.
5- Move Your Body:
Run, dance, swim, exercise, jump–it doesn’t matter. Body movement, and an increased heart rate has instant benefits for mood and overall health, especially heart-health. If you’re in need of a pick-me-up, try turning on some of your favourite music and dancing it out. If you’re more of the sporty-type, go on a jog or lift some weights. Either way, even small amounts of exercise boost mood, release endorphins, and increase confidence.
In a world that says self-care is selfish–know that it’s not. We are all in this together, but don’t drown yourself by keeping others afloat. Make time for yourself to do the things you love, do them, splurge on yourself, and enjoy life.