Self-care is a person taking care of themselves and their personal health, well-being, or happiness.
Many people say they don’t have time to do this because the demands put on them by work, family, friends, and society make it impossible to catch a break and focus on themselves in any extended or meaningful way.
They feel that if they are not constantly rushing around doing things, then they will never get anything done. But what this does is create stress and anxiety, which ultimately takes away from our lives.
To change this, you need to learn how to balance life so that you can take some “me” time. This means finding a balance between work and play. You need to enjoy yourself and have things around you to entertain yourself.
For me personally, I’m addicted to making food, going out with friends, reading books, watching TV shows, shopping online, working out at my local gym, listening to music, and creating art.
These all help me take a break from the stresses of the world.
I know it sounds crazy, but once I started to incorporate these simple pleasures into my life I realized just how often I was stressed about something, and as soon as I did something like read a book or made a meal everything changed.
So here are some ways that you can also incorporate an element of self-care into your daily schedule.
How Can You Practice Self-Care?
Find Your Passion
The first step is identifying your passion and what makes you happy. Try putting aside a couple of hours each day where you spend time doing something that you love. It could be learning new techniques, going to a workshop, or even getting a hobby.
Whatever it may be, find something that you’re truly passionate about and dedicate time every day to doing that thing. When you’ve found your niche, put that into action.
Make sure that you find what you love so much that you’re excited to keep doing it every day!
Clean Up Your Space
The surrounding environment is very important and reflective of your mind space. A clean environment will lead to a much less cluttered thought process.
That’s also why people who tend towards low moods, depression, or anxiety often find themselves getting worse the messier their environment becomes. But then the more depressed or low they are, the less they want to clean. It’s a vicious cycle that needs to be tackled head-on.
Learn How To Relax
For me, relaxing is simply taking a moment to stop whatever task I’m working on and clear my mind. A great way to do this is by playing background noise and focusing on the music that I listen to.
For you, this could be by doing something you find relaxing, something that you can do where you switch your brain off for a couple of minutes.
A Healthier Diet
What you put into your mouth is directly responsible for how your body and brain operate. If you put junk in your body, you will feel like trash. It’s as simple as that. But then the problem is that the junk can taste a lot better than the healthier stuff.
It takes self-discipline and a real want to turn your life and diet around. Studies have shown that individuals with excellent water intake and a nutritious diet had much higher satisfaction and happiness rate in life and were more productive and successful too.
Movement And Exercise
Movement and exercise are very important for health; however, it isn’t always easy to find the time to fit them in. If you do have the ability to commit to taking time for movement, check out YouTube for different workout routines.
Another option would be joining a fitness group that focuses on yoga, aerobics, running etc.
With some discipline and patience, you won’t regret adding any of these elements back into your lifestyle. Remember that you deserve to be healthy and happy. Set your life up for success and follow through!
Of all these tips for self-care, movement and exercise are probably the most important ones. This is for a multitude of reasons that we’ll go into below.
The Importance Of Movement And Exercise As Self Care
Movement and exercise are great for self-care because they release endorphins. Endorphins are a chemical in the body responsible for feelings of pleasure and joy. When we exercise, our brains release endorphins which make us feel good and motivated!
We know the importance of mental health when it comes to overall well-being because the brain controls everything else; but what about the body?
We need to take good care of ourselves as well, especially if we live in a world surrounded by stressors such as work, finances, relationships, family, etc.
It’s not until you start exercising regularly that you’ll notice a change in your physical health. After all, if your body wasn’t cared for properly, you wouldn’t be able to function at 100%!
The brain has an impact on other organs within the body through hormones and neurotransmitters. When we move, these chemicals also get released, which makes us feel good! These chemicals give us energy and boost motivation levels.
Endorphins play a role in helping us sleep better and experience lower pain from injuries or chronic conditions. They also help improve memory retention and creativity. So when it comes to movement and exercise, we have to include this element into our routine.
Moving Is Good For Our Mental Health Too
According to Harvard Medical School, exercise improves brain activity as well as cognitive functions. An article published by Science Daily states “Exercise is known to aid learning, memory recall and attention span”.
In addition, according to Mayo Clinic, “Research has found improvements in people with depression, anxiety, and attention deficit disorder (ADD/ADHD).
Other studies link physical activity with improvements in focus, mood, and quality of life. The American Cancer Society recommends adults maintain “150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity per week.”
If you struggle with poor concentration or attention issues, I suggest incorporating movement into your day. Instead of sitting down to watch your favorite show or read your book, try dancing around the room or getting up from your desk to stretch and walk around.
You’ll be surprised by how much this works.
Movement Helps With Weight Loss
As mentioned above, endorphins and serotonin are responsible for weight loss. According to WebMD, “Serotonin is a hormone made in the brain, and it helps regulate appetite control. Serotonin acts like a natural appetite suppressant that causes someone to feel full. If serotonin isn’t working correctly, then a person may eat more than he needs to”.
In addition to food, moving can also help burn calories and fat and promote muscle growth. A study conducted by the University of Massachusetts, Boston, revealed that even walking just 30 to 45 minutes burns approximately 300 calories, depending on the pace you take.
When it comes to weight loss, one thing you should always keep in mind is portion size. Try eating healthy snacks throughout the day rather than relying on larger meals. Stick to smaller portions and eat slowly instead of overeating quickly.
Be sure to avoid foods high in sugar, refined grains, processed meats, fats, fried foods, and alcohol.
Stress Management & Relaxation
Not only does movement help with weight loss, but it also provides relief for many ailments and diseases. A healthy lifestyle includes being active and taking time to relax daily.
Movement stimulates blood circulation and relieves tension and other stresses associated with everyday living. Furthermore, research shows that relaxation techniques can reduce the effects of PTSD and panic attacks.
Overall, movement is a great way to become healthier, both physically and mentally. It will provide you with energy and increase strength and flexibility while lowering the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
So next time you sit down to do something important, think twice before you choose between sitting and standing. Move your body today!
How Can I Implement Movement And Exercise In My Self Care?
There’s no doubt that staying active is important — and enjoyable! By including regular movement into your daily routine, you will live longer, happier, and healthier. As long as you don’t hurt yourself or cause damage to your joints, there’s nothing not worth doing.
All you need to do now is make the decision to change things up and become motivated! Let’s get started with these steps:
Don’t expect perfection right away. It takes a while for the body to adapt to new habits. Your first goal shouldn’t be to run two miles or lift 200 pounds. Focus on starting slower and building momentum over time. If you’re overweight, start with simple activities like walking or jogging. Do what you enjoy.
Make A Schedule
Getting up earlier might be easier said than done. But if you have trouble falling asleep at night, a consistent wake-up call might work better. Set an alarm clock so that it wakes you naturally without any sense of urgency.
Prepare Ahead Of Time
Take the initiative to set a few reminders on your smartphone when exercise time approaches. This will help you prepare ahead of time, and do things like change, plan your movement, and gather anything you might need.
Make Sure To Wind Down Correctly
Movement is very important to the body, but it can also be quite dangerous if you don’t take proper care. You don’t want to damage anything in pursuit of mental health, which is why exercise after-care is important.
This can be things like rehydrating, resting, doing a cool-down stretch, eating a healthy snack, and showering. Did you know the best way to relax your muscles post-workout is to use cold water for a few minutes?
Using these steps should make it a lot easier to implement movement and exercise into your daily routine. And once you’ve established this habit, keep going! You’ll see how much more productive and less stressed out you feel. Good luck!
Frequently Asked Questions
How Can Exercise Help With Self-Care?
Exercise helps with self-care by putting us in a better mood. It releases endorphins to relax us and can even help with the growth of new neural pathways in the brain. This is how exercise keeps us physically and mentally healthy.
What Are Examples Of Aerobic Exercises?
An aerobic exercise is just an exercise that increases your heart rate and oxygen intake. This can be anything from running to cycling, or even just walking.
Why Is It Important To Be Flexible?
Flexibility will help with muscular weakness, avoid muscle shortening and pain, improve posture and movement all around, and can even reduce your risk of injury.
And there you have it — a healthy body makes the best possible foundation of a healthy, happy mind. So, make plans to get active today, and never look back. You’ll feel like a whole new person in no time!