The past two weeks have been a whirlwind and many people have experienced a roller coaster of emotions particularly women, LGBTQ and communities of color. The topic of self care has been bubbling for the past two years or so and I have a feeling that it won’t die anytime soon. With our political and social climate being more blatantly aggressive to marginalized groups self care is even more important. Listed below are some self care tips that will help get you through rough times and make you feel good again.
I highly recommend detaching yourself from your social media outlets. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat. Whichever one is giving you stress and brining up feelings of negativity or sadness, remove it from your life. If you don’t want to completely delete your accounts you can simply delete the app from your phone. Many computers also have parental controls that you can enable to make it harder for you to access these websites if you’re serious about taking a break. I know that Facebook has a deactivate option which allows you to keep your account but gives you the flexibility of taking a break.
People assume that in order to meditate that you have to be some totally zen person who can sit still and silence their mind for hours on end. That couldn’t be any further from the truth. Meditation really means being mindful and present in the moment. And the beauty is that you don’t have to sit still on a pillow in order to do it. Try and carve out some quiet time at home, turn off the tv and listen to some music or you can go for a walk outside. Take some deep breaths. What sounds do you hear? What sensations are you feeling? Having a moment to get out of your head with help you feel refreshed and recharged.
Laughter truly is the best medicine and nothing feels better than having a good laugh. Call up your friend who makes you giggle and chit chat, watch a funny show that leaves you in stitches, find a comedy special on tv. Watch that movie that you loved as a kid. Of course it won’t be the same but it’ll give you that nostalgic feeling. Whatever brings a smile to your face and puts your heart at ease is great.
Whether you workout, run, or swim getting your body to move does wonders for your mood. Even if you’ve never done any physical activity before you can take a walk or dance around your house. Physical activity releases endorphins and makes you feel good. You can do as little as 15 minutes of any type of activity that gets the blood moving and increases your heart rate. The great thing about being physically active is that you feel great afterwards and you may feel encouraged to continue. The more you move your boy, the better you feel.
Attitude of Gratitude
Create a gratitude journal. When life gets rough we can often forget about the wonderful people, experiences or things that we are fortunate to have. Your list can include huge accomplishments like a promotion or a new job and little treasures like having a roof over your head or loving family and friends. Keep your journal in handy place so that you can not only write in it often but also read it often.
Are you good at knitting? Do you like baking? How long has it been since you colored? Unleashing your creativity is an excellent way to practice self care. Getting lost in a project can take your mind off of things and you can keep you focused. Plus your finished product is something to can take pride in. Try something, anything to release those creative vibes. Even try something that you may have never done before to see how you do.
Often times people send care packages to other people with goodies that make them feel good and brighten their day. Well why not give yourself a care package? Have a basket or some type of special box to keep all of YOUR special goodies. You can put a book you’ve meaning to read or have already read in it, a pedicure/manicure kit, bubbles to give yourself a bubble bath, chocolate or some other type of sweet treat. You can put anything you want in your care package! Keep it stocked and whenever you’re out at the store and see something you would like to add, buy it and keep it in your box. Even keeping your care package in a place where it will be easily visible could put you in a better mood just knowing that you will use those items.
This can be a tough one for some people but once you take that first step it can be so liberating. Go to your favorite restaurant by yourself and order whatever you want. Take yourself out to a movie that you wanted to see. Maybe have a stay-cation in your city and book a hotel room for one night. Wine and dine yourself and rekindle that relationship with yourself. It may feel weird at first and that’s normal. Don’t worry about what other people re doing, just be in your own bubble and enjoy the alone time with you!
Hard times will come in life without a doubt and you can move through them with the least amount of stress and discomfort by checking in with you. Don’t neglect that special relationship because no matter what goes on or who is in your life, the most important person that you need to make happy and cherish is… You!