This is what my typical workday looks like: I sit in the office all day working on loads of paperwork, finishing off a mile-long to-do list, managing my boss’ jam-packed calendar, booking staff flights and meetings, ordering supplies, answering phones, etc.
Then after work, I take a long commute home, do errands, make dinner and spend time with my husband. By the time I finish doing stuff for other people, I have canceled my yoga session, coffee with a friend, or massage appointment.
Life is crazy and most of the time, I tend to put my self-care on the back burner to make room for all other things.
And I know most of us do, too.
However, practicing self-care is an essential part of my life and it has helped me stay sane and upbeat. A few simple habits of self-care can be so rewarding and relaxing that it allows me to let go of everyday stress and negativity around me.
Below are 12 self-care tips that you can try this week. Pick the ones that speak to you and do it as often as you can.
1. Put yourself first.
As women, we find it really difficult to remember our own happiness in addition to everyone else’s. We tend to love selflessly, but we also forget to love ourselves.
Do you remember what flight attendants say before the plane takes off?
They always say, “Put on your own oxygen mask first before helping others around you.”
If you aren’t taking care of yourself, how will you be able to take care of others?
You cannot share an empty cup. Fill yours first.
Put away the excuses and take care of yourself.
2. Say daily positive affirmations.
In simple terms, the definition of affirmations (sometimes called “self-affirmation”) is ‘positive sentences that you repeat to yourself’.
Saying positive affirmations helps me stay grounded and positive in the midst of daily challenges. It helps build my self-confidence, and overcome self-doubt and negative thoughts.
Remember: You are what you think.
Here are some examples of positive affirmations that you can tell yourself every day:
“Today, I am brimming with energy and overflowing with joy.”
“I am beautiful and strong, and my imperfections make me unique.”
“I am worthy of love, respect, and acceptance. There is love all around me.”
“I have the power to create change.”
“All areas of my life are abundant and filling.”
“Every experience I have is perfect for my growth.”
“My past is not a reflection of my future.”
“My life is a gift and I appreciate everything I have.”
“My body is healthy; my mind is brilliant; my soul is tranquil.”
“I am successful. Money comes easily and effortlessly.”
3. Embrace your imperfections.
Have you ever felt pressured to have the perfect body or a flawless image of your life on social media?
Have you ever scrolled through your social media feed admiring a friend’s vacation photos or flawless selfies, only to find yourself depressed or anxious about not measuring up?
In the age of social media, we often find ourselves obsessing over how other people perceive us, so we use filters and whatnot to paint a perfect image of ourselves.
But what if, instead of trying so hard to be perfect, why don’t we just allow ourselves to embrace imperfection?
4. Create joyful rituals.
One of the simple things that make my soul happy is having a few joyful rituals. This is my way of celebrating life and infusing my days with joy and meaning.
So what is a joyful ritual? For me, it can be a simple thing as enjoying tea time while reading a book on a weekend. Or having a nice, warm bath while listening to a relaxing sound or music. Or it can be a hugging ritual with your partner each night before bed.
A joyful ritual can be something so “simple” or “common”, yet heartwarming enough to make your soul smile, no matter what life throws at you.
5. Practice gratitude.
Being thankful can make your life better in so many ways.
Research shows that people who are grateful find a greater sense of feeling connected to others and have a more optimistic view towards life.
One way of practicing gratitude is by starting your day with morning gratitude affirmations.
Affirmations of gratitude will help you to set the intention to spend your day in a state of thankfulness. This positivity allows you to better cope with any unpleasant surprises which the day may bring.
6. Eat green.
Green eating is about making healthy, natural choices when it comes to the foods we eat along with choosing foods that are healthy for our planet.
Why do I choose green eating?
Because it is better for your health, it helps the local economy, and it reduces fuel consumption and global warming.
Buy local. Choose organic. Eat well knowing you’re taking care of yourself and the environment.
7. Squeeze in a morning workout.
One of the best ways to energize your day is to do a short, quick workout in the morning.
I personally do a quick 10-minute yoga session in the morning, and I feel great every single time.
You can use Youtube or apps that offer 5 to 10-minute workouts that will help keep you going throughout the day.
We live in such a busy, over-gadget-ized world. Most people, including myself, are guilty of being “disconnected” socially by being connected digitally.
The one bad habit that I want to get rid of is grabbing my phone first thing when waking up. (oops!) I regularly set my alarm clock to wake up early but most of the time I would find myself wasting a good hour scrolling my Facebook or Instagram.
Unplug for several hours a day and find a quiet place – and just sit there. Be still. Enjoy the peace, and just appreciate the stillness.
“Unplug to unwind; tune out to tune in, and disconnect to connect.”
9. Learn to say “no”
I have been a people pleaser all my life.
And this attitude has caused me a lot of stress and heartaches.
But now I have slowly learned the art of saying no.
Being able to say “no” means that you are aware of your own value and boundaries, and you are not afraid of letting other people down to protect your own happiness or safety.
It’s when people learn to say no that their careers take off, their well-being improves, and personal values are preserved.
Learn to say no and you’ll realize how liberating it is.
10. Avoid negative people
Did you know that negative people are literally killing you?
Yup, those toxic people that are no fun to be around, can actually have incredibly negative effects on your health and success.
Avoid that friend or coworker who always complains or spreads gossips. Don’t let them bring you into their negativity.
Unfriend those annoying people on Facebook. Unfollow the “toxics” on Instagram.
Surround yourself with people who inspire you, encourage you and help you realize your potential.
11. Subscribe to inspiring blogs.
Now that you’ve taken the toxic people out of your life, it’s time to surround yourself with uplifting, positive thoughts.
Pick a few articles from blogs and websites that you find inspiring and read them throughout the day.
You can also help share positivity by sharing these articles through social media.
Be inspired – fill your heart with love and your mind with positivity.
12. Pamper yourself.
Reward yourself by giving in to some simple pleasures.
When I think of simple pleasures, I think of all the little things I enjoy that are either free or inexpensive. They are the most unassuming moments, but things I truly find immense pleasure in.
Simple things such as enjoying a decadent dessert, a hot bubble bath or a romantic-comedy movie make my soul smile with glee.
Love yourself as much as you would like to be loved.
So which ones of these self-care tips will you try first? What self-care tips can you share with me? I would love to hear from you 🙂