I think we’re all starting to figure out self-care. Self-care isn’t just about face masks, painting your nails, and getting massages. It’s a lot more than that. It’s about doing things that put you into a better head space. Self-care is doing things that make you happy, healthy, and feel good.
I know self-care has become “trendy” over the last year or so, but that’s because we’re finally realizing how important it is! Self-care is not selfish…it is necessary.
The following quotes can put self-care into perspective if you’re still hesitant to believe that it is necessary:
“You can’t pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first.”
“When you are on an airplane, they tell you in an emergency to put on your oxygen mask first then to help others…it is the same in life as well. If you don’t take care of you, then there is no you to be able to help others.” – Karen Kostyla
It’s definitely important to implement self-care into your daily life, but occasionally you should have a WHOLE DAY dedicated to self-care to recharge your soul.
So choose a day and plan out what things to do for your ultimate self-care day.
Here are some ideas and what I’ll be doing on my self-care day:
Wake up early
Set your alarm for an early time and when it goes off in the morning WAKE UP. No snooze, no complaining, no hesitation, just get up because you said you would. Make it a great day by starting it off right.
Simple tasks such as waking up when you said you would help to build your confidence and self-discipline. You are telling your body/mind what to do, not the other way around. This is discipline. To read more on building confidence check out this post.
If you’re like me, waking up later than you intended to stresses you out. Waking up early allows me to get a lot more done and I always feel better about myself.
(Or) Sleep in
Now if you’re the type of person who really needs a day off because you’re always up by 6 am and non-stop go, go, go…sleeping in may be a better option for you. Don’t set an alarm and just sleep until you want to. Don’t stress about it.
Write down a list of your accomplishments
Give yourself credit for the things you’ve accomplished so far in life/this year/this month/last week, whichever you prefer. We tend to be hard on ourselves without realizing how far we’ve come.
Actually taking the time to think about/reflect on the past will make you aware of your progress. This may increase your happiness, your motivation, and your confidence.
Write down your goals and/or to-do list
I’m a very goal-oriented and list writing individual, but I know many people are not. Writing down goals, whether short-term, long-term, or both is an important reminder to live on PURPOSE. If you’re just on auto-pilot every single day without going after something bigger, it’s hard to feel fulfilled in life.
So write down your big and small goals and maybe even a list to break down what you need to do to reach those goals.
Also, writing a general to-do list will help keep your day/week/month organized. There’s no way anyone can remember everything they need to do from school work to work tasks to home improvement projects. Writing a to-do list makes your life more manageable.
Journaling can be whatever you want it to. You can brain dump, write down what you are grateful for, write down what you want to manifest, write a story or poem, etc.
Journaling can help you interpret your feelings and get your creative juices flowing, both of which are great for your brain.
Detox from social media
As much as you don’t want to admit it, you’re probably addicted to social media. Unfortunately I think social media is slowly destroying our society. I think it is a great tool, however, the way it is used by most causes a lot of problems.
I think a social media detox is essential for a self-care day.
Mindlessly scrolling through Instagram honestly isn’t healthy. You become unaware of the time passing and typically none of the photos/stories you are scrolling through and liking are improving your life.
Social media also opens the door to comparison. Comparing your body, life, career, or belongings to others definitely does not scream self-care.
Despite FOMO, I promise you’ll be OK if you stay off of social media for one day.
RELATED POST: Social Media, Over Consumerism, and Digital Addiction
Sunshine and nature can do a lot of good for you.
Whether it’s summer or winter, sunny or rainy, dress appropriately and spend some time outdoors.
Go for a walk and take in the sights, sounds, and smells around you.
Sit on your balcony or under a tree and breathe in the fresh air.
Nature is known to be healing, restorative, and soothing. The best thing about it is that it’s free and all around us.
Declutter/Clean your room
Physical clutter = brain clutter, whether you realize it or not. Fix your environment to match how you want to feel.
For me, cleaning can also put me in a meditative state. It’s relaxing and satisfying to see the instant results.
We all know working out is good for us for many reasons. Make it a priority, especially on your self-care day. Even if you don’t feel like it, you’ll feel great and accomplished once it’s done.
Similar to waking up early/on time, working out takes physical AND mental effort. Therefore, once you complete it you get a boost in confidence due to your self-discipline.
Taking care of your health is key to self-care and loving yourself. Our bodies NEED to be active in order to thrive, so get your heart rate up for at least 30 minutes.
I think stretching is very often neglected, myself included. Stretching increases blood flow, prevents injury, eases tension, and can be quite relaxing.
You could follow a stretch routine on YouTube, but I love a nice “flow.” A yoga/stretch flow is when you just move your body and hold stretches that feel right and good for you, this means each stretch session is usually different.
Put on some nice music or your favorite Youtuber and spend a good 20-30 minutes stretching. Be sure to hold each stretch for 30 seconds to 2 minutes for the best results!
Below is my absolute favorite quick stretch for anytime of day:
Take a bath
Of course throwing in some pampering doesn’t hurt! Personally, I think a bath is the most beneficial to reduce stress and relieve tension. Baths have also been shown to aid in digestion, improve blood circulation, and boost your mood among other benefits.
And if you’re feeling fancy, rub on a face mask at the same time!
Of course you could book a professional massage…but to save time and money try self-massage. You can’t reach all of your body but personally I love to rub my feet and shoulders/upper back.
I actually massage my trapezius muscles almost daily while I shower. I just use a little bit of soap and apply firm pressure. It’s so relaxing and feels really good.
So grab yourself some lotion or oil and rub any parts of your body that feel tension.
Reading is one of my favorite things to do, you gotta have a good book though! Bonus points if you read your book while sitting on a comfy seat, with a cozy blanket, and a warm drink!
All you need is 10-15 minutes and you can get through several pages.
Personally, I prefer self-improvement books because they inspire and motivate me. However, if a fiction book is more your thing you can allow your mind to get lost in the story!
Meditation will always pop up on any of my self-care/love/health posts because it’s simply SO GOOD FOR YOU! You have to find the form of meditation that works for you, and it’s OK if you can’t clear your mind or stop thinking. Being aware of your thoughts and how you feel while you meditate is important too.
My favorite meditation app is Insight Timer, they have many options available to fit your lifestyle.
Meal prep/Cook a healthy meal
Just like working out, nutrition is key to self-care. Your body is your home for the rest of your life. Your body literally fights daily to keep you alive…that’s pretty amazing. Respect it by putting healthy, nourishing food into it.
In my opinion, nutrition is even more important that being active. Eating highly processed foods, high sugar foods, and tons of animal products will mess up your gut for sure.
If you notice things such as acne, fatigue, really stinky bowel movements, stomach upset, etc. then you may want to start really paying attention to what you’re putting into your body.
For your self-care day only eat clean, home made meals. See how it makes you feel.
I’ll even give you a quick meal plan idea:
Breakfast: Oats with berries, almond butter, chia seeds, and cinnamon
Snack: Ezekiel toast with coconut oil (or hummus) and an orange
Lunch: Lentil pasta with tomato sauce (try finding a “no sugar added” one)
Snack: Chopped veggies (carrots, cucumbers, bell peppers, etc.) with hummus
Dinner: A nourish/Buddha bowl with beans, sweet potato, brown rice, spinach, sautéed veggies, and avocado
Adjust the serving sizes to fit your needs and you’ll feel great. Cooking doesn’t need to be hard, just throw some food together or find recipes that you think you’ll enjoy. And no excuses today! It’s your self-care day so you have time!
Get work done
Being productive and getting work done makes me feel SO good. Scratching everything off of my to-do list is so satisfying which is exactly why I would include it on a self-care day.
If you have homework to do, a paper to write, a blog post to finish, photos to take, or whatever other project you may be working on…dedicate a good 1 to 2 hours working on it.
You may even finish it and you’ll feel so accomplished and content with yourself!
Having a full on self-care day every couple of months will help to prevent burn out and stress. It’s so very important to do things for yourself every so often!