Self-care is the practice of taking time to care for your physical and emotional needs. As simple as it seems, many women tend to put their own needs on the back burner to care for others first.
As women, we often view self-care as an indulgence rather than a necessity for our health. Self-care is a practice that we don’t just deserve, we need it to operate at our best physically and mentally. If you’re ready to take better care of yourself, keep reading for 6 practical tips to maximize self-care for women.
1. Move Your Body Daily
Exercise has endless benefits for your physical and mental health. To keep yourself both healthy and happy, take time to move your body every day. Carving aside this time to honor yourself is such an important act of self-care that will remind you to respect and love your body.
Your movement may look different depending on the day - some days maybe all you need is a gentle walk around the neighborhood, while other days you can handle something more challenging like HIIT or strength training. Remember to listen to your body and adjust each day to your needs!
If you’re looking for workout ideas be sure to check out the Sunny Health & Fitness YouTube Channel for tons of free workouts that you can follow along to from home!
2. Indulge in Alone Time
Taking time for yourself is not selfish - it’s time to recharge. Alone time can be an important time to replenish and refill. It will give you time to process your thoughts and strengthen your sense of wellbeing.
When you spend time alone, you get to know and understand yourself more - which will not only increase self-love but also help you empathize and develop healthier relationships with those around you.
3. Pick Up a Creative Hobby
Creativity can be a great tool for many to help destress and boost your mood(1). Having a hobby can help break up the mundane in your routine and give you something to feel accomplished and excited about. If you’re feeling stuck in a rut, try picking up a hobby that sounds fun to you - like cooking, painting, reading, memory keeping, playing an instrument or sport, or community service. Whatever you choose, this is your time, so choose something that sounds the most fun for you!
4. Treat Yourself
Treating yourself might seem counterintuitive to a healthy lifestyle, however, it can also be highly rewarding and help you to foster joy in your regular routine. You don’t have to treat yourself with grand gestures, expensive investments, or even unhealthy indulgences; small and simple treats can be just as effective in adding joy to your day and recentering yourself. Start with something small, like picking up a nourishing smoothie or healthy meal after a workout, going to get your nails done, or pausing to treat yourself to a coffee on a rough day.
5. Make Sleep a Priority
Getting enough sleep will fill your daily power meter so that you not only have the energy to take care of yourself but others as well. If you’ve been feeling anxious or stressed - examine your sleep schedule. Have you been getting enough sleep?
Carving out that precious time for sleep may be easier said than done, but it’s definitely worth it! It’s no secret that some decent shuteye will make your hours during the day feel more productive, rested, and ready to put your best foot forward.
6. Value Your Self-Care Routine
Finally, value your self-care routine! Since self-care is such a fluid practice it can be tough to get into a regular routine. While a single relaxing bubble bath may lift your mood, it’s not enough to keep your cup filled.
It’s important to listen to your body, mind, and ever-changing moods to apply self-care practices into your day as needed; but it’s also important to schedule that time for yourself into your calendar. A good self-care routine requires planning and repetition. The structure of a regular self-care routine done right will help you feel safe, cared for, happy, and healthy.
(1) “Creativity for Mental Health: Seeking New Answers to an Old Question, 2019, https://content.sciendo.com/configurable/contentpage/journals$002fctra$002f5$002f2$002farticle-p165.xml. Accessed 8 March, 2020.