It’s a simply truth… If we don’t take care of ourselves, nobody else will and taking care of ourselves is crucial to our happiness, success and longevity.
It is so easy to get caught up in the endless cycle of sleep, work and repeat. It’s that daily grind that will quickly lead to burn out and it is important to remember that there is more to life than that. Life must be a balance and your mind and body deserve a break to not get physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted.
Self-care is an essential part of any healthy lifestyle and keeps us happy, healthy and more satisfied and fulfilled. The problem is, we aren’t doing it enough and oftentimes ignore our own needs. Take the time to check in with yourself and create your action plan to take at least 20 minutes a day to do something good for yourself.
Here are our TOP 10 ways to take care of yourself every single day and help yourself to boost your happiness, reduce stress and improve overall health.
#1 Start Your Day with Meditation
Start every morning with a short 5 to 10 minute meditation. It doesn’t take a ton of time to do something good for your body and mind. Just a few short minutes can help you reduce stress, find emotional balance and some research even suggests that it could help keep winter illnesses away. Meditating in the morning allows you to minimize distractions and increases self-awareness, which helps you to put things in perspective and remember what’s really important to you. Life is incredibly loud, your mind is loud, stress is loud, the world is loud. Finding some quite time is the perfect antidote to the dramatic noise of life.
#2 Exercise/Do Yoga
Exercise goes a long way to take care of yourself and keep your body and mind happy. You dramatically reduce stress and boost your mood and if you exercise in the morning you’ll feel energized, focused and motivated to take on the day ahead. Taking a yoga class is also a great option to get in tune with yourself and do something good for yourself because for most people it’s that one hour where your phone is off and you can completely focus on yourself. No work, no projects, no clients. It’s one of the easiest ways to reset your body and mind.
#3 Get Enough Sleep
Life is crazy and whether it’s working late, catching up on your social life or simply indulging in your favorite Netflix series, it’s easy to sabotage your sleep. But skimping on your Zzz’s has a hugely negative impact on your life, from losing productivity at work, choosing larger food portions and usually grabbing unhealthier food choices, taking a toll on your mood and energy to increasing chances of diseases like heart disease and diabetes. Make a good night’s rest a priority and you will be a lot happier, healthier and energized to deal with whatever the day throws at you. And if you don’t get enough sleep at night, try to get a quick cat nap in during your lunch break.
#4 Keep a Journal
Writing is incredibly therapeutic and in just a few minutes you have a bullet-proof outlet to stay in the present moment, remember all the little moments in life, sort out challenges and solve problems. Write down whatever comes to mind without any filter and get your thoughts, emotions, feelings, worries, gratitude and your to-do list onto a piece of paper and out of your mind. Keep your journal close to your bed and make it part of your evening routine to write a few sentences or paragraphs before you go to sleep to clear your head and enjoy a good night’s rest.
Reading is one of the best ways to escape from all the stresses and concerns of reality and fuel your mind with something positive. Pick up a book in your favorite genre whether that’s fiction, a biography, something about your hobby or passion or a book that helps you on your journey of self-development. Dive into an alternate reality, it’s incredibly relaxing and helps you to let go of the pressures of life. And keep in mind, the more you read, the more you exercise your brain and boost your creativity, knowledge, mental sharpness, confidence and intelligence.
We live in a huge world, so go out and explore it beyond your daily commute. Take the time over the weekend to explore a different city or even a different area of your own, take a vacation that gets out of your comfort zone and experience new people, new things, new cultures, new foods, new points of view. The more you get out and explore different things, the more compassion and wisdom you develop as a human being and expand your horizon.
Whatever works best for you, it is essential to relax your body, mind and spirit to stay mentally sharp and bring emotional balance into your life. Get a massage, take a walk in the park, sit in the sun, take a day off, sit in a sauna or steam room, take a yoga class, go for a long weekend to get away, golf, laugh, go to happy hour. Make it a point to relax every single day and you will be a lot less moody and short tempered and allow yourself to be a lot more level headed and focused to make less mistakes.
#8 Indulge Your Inner Dork
We all have an inner dork, let it out and play. It is essential to indulge your inner dork, follow your passion no matter how silly or geeky it may be and allow your sense of humor and personality to come out. It’s impossible to live as a serious person 100% of the time and being too serious is stressful. So dork out and make things more lighthearted, it shows that you are human and can have fun.
#9 Unplug from Technology
Are you one of those people who grab their phone first thing in the morning when you wake up? We live in a day and age where we are so addicted to our technology that we forget to live and enjoy the present moment. Take your time in the morning, meditate, listen to an inspiring podcast during breakfast, exercise, read an empowering book… Set yourself up for a great day, all your messages will still be there after your morning ritual, only now you are in the right frame of mind to deal with everything clear headed and energized. Do the same thing at night, at least 30 minutes before you go to bed, unplug all your technology and have a calming bedtime routine that doesn’t involve answering emails or checking your social media feed.
#10 Spend Quality Time with Family and Friends
Your friends and family are your biggest support group and if you had an especially stressful, tough day at work, they bring you back into reality and boost your mood. Our busy lives always tend to get in the way of maintaining friendships and all our responsibilities make us forget who is really important to us. Pick up the phone and call your friend and just talk about all the good things that are happening in your lives right now. Or invite your bestie over for dinner and spend good quality face-to-face time with him or her. This will keep you grounded and you meet your emotional needs of connecting with other people.
A lot of us feel guilty when we indulge in taking some ‘me’ time, however, taking care of yourself is just as important as helping another person and you wouldn’t think twice about helping a friend who needs your support. Research shows that the pursuit of health and happiness is far from being selfish or over-indulgent. It is detrimental to improve many aspects of our lives, including physical, mental and emotional health, relationships and even our income.
MAKE THE CHOICE TO PRACTICE SELF-CARE
Joschi & Monika