It's Not Selfish - It's Self-Care
Taking time for yourself is not selfish, and you should never feel guilty about it! Taking time out for yourself to be alone is essential to regroup and recharge your mental batteries. If I didn't have alone time, free from social media and socializing I would feel drained-and who wants that? I've always been that girl that had to be doing something., I had to be with someone-doing something to keep myself busy. Up until a few years ago, I never enjoyed being by myself. It's crazy how everything changes, because I absolutely love my "me" time. It's so necessary for my personal growth, body and soul.
One of my biggest goals for my blog - other than focusing on all things beauty/health related is for this space to be a place where leading a healthy, happy lifestyle is constantly encouraged. Here on my blog, I tend to write more posts dedicated to Self-Care and there's a big reason for that. Self-Care is a very big deal to me, and should be to you, too.
Let me start of by saying I want you to live your healthiest, happiest life imaginable. How can we accomplish this? Through daily practice of self-care. This is not an act that just happens each day, you must take the time out to do so. I know with a busy schedule, it can be extremely hard to take two seconds for yourself- but it's crucial. It's absolutely necessary to your overall health and happiness to make self-care a top priority in your life.
If you're wondering why you should make yourself a priority in your every day life, I'll give you two big reasons, right now.
- If you aren't practicing self care you will experience burn out, that lags at your overall physical and mental state causing mental fatigue, and overall low energy.
- When you're not focusing on yourself, it can lead to anxiety, or depression and those are tough struggles to overcome that can last for years if you don't make yourself a priority
If you aren't putting your mental health in the forefront, how can you expect to help others? You must make yourself a priority in your own life, and give your mind body and spirit what it truly deserves. Self-Care comes in many forms and everyone can do it. It requires minimal effort, but it's well worth all that you can give. Today I'm sharing several ways you can practice Self-Care, on your own terms. Here are just a few ways you can kick back, regroup and feel replenished.
I'm a firm believer in writing in a journal/diary/ whatever you want to call it. I know it sounds silly just writing, venting for yourself for no one else to read, but it does have it's benefits. Writing down how you're feeling each day can provide you with a new point of view. It can lead you to a solution to a big problem, or dilemma you're facing. Writing in a journal allows you to vent, and to confront your feelings head on. Sitting down and writing about your feelings allows you to process them, and get a better understanding overall. Journaling allows you to lead a more balanced life, and is a healthy outlet for all of our feelings and emotions.
Taking time to rest
I know, it sounds totally boring but it's worth the effort...or lack thereof. Taking time to simply rest is the FIRST step in self-care and making yourself a priority in your every day life. Instead of going out with friends every weekend, take one day to yourself to lounge around, and simply rest. Whatever "rest" means to you, practice it, and often! For me, resting means ditching makeup, electronics, and indulging in a good book. Allowing yourself that time to really do nothing, has HUGE health benefits. It allows your mind to wander, and to simply just be.
Reflection is a big part of self-care. I'm a big advocate of it, and am always encouraging my friends to do it, and do it often. Reflection keeps you in tune with where you are in your current life. If you spend time reflecting on the "now" it will help you become a better you. If you spend time analyzing your habits now, it will lead you to the areas you need to focus and work on-so you can improve your everyday life. Reflection is how you can notice what needs the most attention in your life now.
Exercise is a HUGE part of my everyday life. All through middle and high school I was always playing Field Hockey, and Track and Field. Playing sports through my school years built the foundation for my adult life (and turned me into a total gym rat - I have no shame.) Exercise is easy, and anyone can do it, no matter how old, or experienced you are. You just have to do it. It's that simple. If you're not big into fitness, just try nightly walks after work. I can not stress it enough how important fitness is to your mental and overall being. You don't have to work out every single day to reap the benefits, you just have to move. Exercise is an amazing outlet and the best anti-depressant out there. Through exercise, you can earn a bigger appreciation for what your body can do, and that makes all the difference in how you see yourself.
I'm a big advocate for solo adventures, it's so fun and care free! I make it a point to go on a few solo adventures a couple times a month. I know it's so silly, but I absolutely hate going shopping with other people. If I'm hitting the mall with my girl friends, that's totally fine, but I can't really focus. I love going on solo adventures to the mall to shop, it allows me time to wander at my leisure and have no time crunch. If you're by yourself, even if it's wandering around the mall, that gives you time to relax. You can do something you enjoy, and have your quiet time-something everyone needs. Being by yourself, even if you're going on a solo drive allows you to get lost in your thoughts, analyze your emotions and mentally recharge. Quiet time away from social activity allows you to fully focus on yourself and practice self-care.
Just a few days ago, I had a "mental health" day which ultimately inspired this post. It made me realize when I'm not practicing Self-Care, everything just feels "off." Lately I've been so stressed about moving cross country, something I've never done before. I've actually never moved out of Maine before, crazy right? I've been going through all the motions - sad, homesick, excited, anxious and it's been a hard roller coaster to ride. But, I will say, by practicing self-care I feel a million times better by this huge change I'm facing in my current life. Lately, I've made hitting the gym an even bigger priority. I've also been spending a lot of my time getting lost in small projects. Self-care comes in different activities for different people. Whether you need to binge watch your favorite shows, paint your nails, or hit the gym, self-care is something we all should make a priority. Today I'm encouraging you, dear reader to lead your best life. I want you to pick an activity above, and just go with it. Spending time alone is one of my favorite ways to practice self care. Whatever you choose to do, fully immerse yourself in it, and enjoy it.