“It’s not selfish to do what is best for you.” – Mark Sutton
It seems that many people, including myself, often put other people’s needs before their own. While it is important to take care of the people we love, it is absolutely essential to take care of ourselves first in order to do so!
To start making yourself a priority, I have made a list of my favorite self-care activities that you can try out today!
Take a break from work
Even if you have SO MUCH work to get done with deadlines that seem impossible to meet, you need to give yourself a break to escape the overwhelm. I learned this the hard way… I would work 13 hour shifts as a retail pharmacist without giving myself a 5 minute break (and no, we weren’t one of the pharmacies that close for an hour). My physical, mental, and emotional well-bring rapidly declined. Now I have learned that when I am feeling stressed or overwhelmed, it is absolutely necessary to take a break, even if just for 5 minutes!
Get some fresh air
Go outside!! The world is a beautiful place, don’t stay cooped up inside staring a Facebook all day! Sit in the sun and soak up a little vitamin D. Go for a walk or run! Exercise is not only necessary for health, it is necessary for your well-being. A brisk walk or run will raise your endorphins, putting you in a happy mood 🙂
Learn a new skill
Currently, the new skill I have been practicing is hand lettering with brush pens. I purchased the Koi Coloring Brush Pen Set and I was amazed at home much easier it was to use brush pens than a traditional calligraphy pen. It still takes a lot of patience, but for me my concentration on the letter makes any stressful thoughts disappear! I often turn to practicing my hand lettering when I have anxiety or feel overwhelmed because it eases those feelings instantly.
Listen to a motivating podcast
My go-to motivating podcast right now is The Chalene Show. Chalene Johnson is just all around amazing: from her fitness routines, to her motivational tips, to her PUSH journal, I am obsessed with everything this woman has to say!
Get dressed up just because!
You don’t need a reason to get dressed up and look your best. Just do it for YOU! Now, I will admit that style and fashion is not my forte. I am so much more comfortable wearing yoga pants and a tee all day. One way that I have found to be both comfortable and look cute is through Stitch Fix.
Stitch Fix has been a godsend for me! Basically, you get your own personal stylist based on how you answer a style quiz. Tell your stylist what styles you like, what you hate, and your budget. Then all you have to do is wait patiently until your first package arrives!
The day that my first Stitch Fix box that was delivered to my doorstep was pretty much equivalent to opening gifts on Christmas morning. What would be in the box?! Turns out my stylist figured me out right from the start! I kept all five items in the box (a cardigan, dressy tank top, black jeans, a comfy gray tee, and a necklace). By keeping all 5 items, I received 25% off the ENTIRE price and they waive the $20 styling fee. Plus, you get FREE shipping and FREE returns! Out of all of the subscription boxes that I have tried, this one is definitely the most valuable, helpful, and fun! Click here to try your own style quiz!
Buy yourself flowers
Just like you don’t need a reason to get dressed up, you also don’t need a reason (or a man!) to buy yourself some fresh flowers! I don’t know about you, but having fresh flowers in the house just makes me feel happy every time I see them.
Do something you have never done before
Think about it: What is something that you have never done before? When is the last time you have tried something for the very first time? Don’t think too hard and talk yourself out of doing it – just GO!
Listen to music from when you were in high school
Listening to music from this time period brings our minds back to fun, carefree times… which will pretty much instantly boost your mood!
Write your thoughts in a journal
One of my favorite ways to relieve stress is to just write. I’m talking pen to paper and getting everything out. This helps me to relieve any stress or anxiety that I’m feeing, or it gives me time to write about any new ideas that I’ve been thinking about. I’ve been journaling for several years now thus I’ve tested out many types of journals to see which was the best fit for me.
My personal favorite is the Leuchtturm1917 medium size hardcover dotted notebook. I like the hardcover of this notebook because it makes it durable so I can bring it everywhere with me. Also, the dotted grid pattern enables me to make straight lines every time. Plus, the bright yellow color just makes me smile 🙂
Draw a picture
Or if drawing isn’t your thing, try an adult coloring book!
Drink a hot cup of tea or coffee
Caffeine, energy, and antioxidants! And who doesn’t feel better after sipping a warm cup of coffee? 😉
Cook a healthy meal
I’m sure everyone can agree that taking the time to cook a healthy meal feels so much better than stuffing your face with McDonalds french fries!
Try out a new fitness class
I personally love hot yoga and kick-boxing classes, but there are so many others to choose from!
Some other examples are barre, pilates, and Piyo.
Another unique one that I tried once was aerial yoga! I really enjoyed aerial yoga because it stretches every muscle in your body! Although there were a few time that I found myself semi-stuck in a position and had to have the instructor unravel me from the fabric! (insert laughing/crying emoji here)
Take a long, hot bath or shower
Add in some bubble bath or epsom salts to make it even more relaxing!
Give yourself a facial
Facials leave me feeling refreshed and confident.
Send me a message to find out how you can get a free Rodan + Fields mini facial!
Treat yourself to a mani/pedi
You’ve been working really hard haven’t you? I know you have and that is why you deserve a trip to the nail salon for a mani-pedi! I justify doing this every 1 to 2 months because having my nails nicely groomed makes me feel put together.
Make a list of all the things you are grateful for
I have an endless amount of things to be grateful for, but I tend to forget some of them when I am feeling worried or stress! If you can say the same, then ease those feelings by making a list of all the things you are grateful for. I bet it will make that one thing that has been stressing you out seem small compared to all of the wonderful gifts that you have in your life.
Read a new book
Or reread one of your favorites!
Listen to a guided meditation
I particularly like Noah Elkrief’s guided meditation (and all of his videos!) Listen to one here.
De-clutter a small area of the house
Emphasis on small. Trying to reorganize your whole garage at once can add even more stress to your life! Start with a small area, like a corner of the garage or the top of your desk. Clear everything out (or off) and clean the space thoroughly. Get rid of things that you do not need. Put back the things that you do need in a neat and organized manner. Now doesn’t that make you feel a lot better?!
Call a friend or family member just to chat
I bet your mom or your out-of-state BFF would love to catch up with all the new and exciting things going on in your life! Give them a call, even if it’s just a quick one!