Sometimes, we can feel that we’re in a rut. Maybe we feel tired, bored, or just downright lazy. In order to feel your best, you have to take care of yourself. This isn’t just about physical health, either. Taking care of your mind is just as important as the rest of your body. Whether you’re feeling your best, or you’re looking for a bit of a reset, taking some self-care steps can help you feel happy and healthier.
Read on for 10 self-care steps you can start taking today.
1. Regulate your sleep schedule
We all know sleep is important, but not all of us know how big of a part it plays in so many factors of our lives. Sleep affects our mood, our appetite, our cardiovascular health, and much more (1). So, if you’re not prioritizing your sleep, you likely feel the effects in multiple areas of your life.
If you’re not getting enough sleep, it can feel difficult to get back on track. It may take a few nights, or even weeks, to completely fix your sleep schedule. These tips from Healthline can teach you how to get enough shut-eye (2).
2. Get outside
No matter what it is that you like to do outside, getting out there is clinically proven to help your health. In fact, health professionals even prescribe it to improve well-being (3). It’ll boost your mood, and your health, as most people tend to get a little exercise once they step outside.
3. Focus on friendship
As we all know, friends are important. However, they’re probably more important than you give them credit for. Friends can help keep things in perspective when we’re stressed, make you feel a sense of belonging, and of course, help us laugh and be happy (4). So, some self-care you could do for yourself is making plans with your friends this weekend.
4. Get a massage
You don’t have to wait for a special occasion to get a massage. You should allow yourself to feel pampered and relax on a regular basis. So, if you have a favorite masseuse, book yourself an appointment this week. If you’re dating someone, you could even ask them for one to save money.
We all feel pretty good after spending time volunteering. Helping others helps put our own lives in perspective, plus you’ll feel a sense of purpose when you realize that your actions can positively impact your surroundings. With any time you are able to spare, start volunteering. You could start by joining a Facebook Group so that you can learn about opportunities as they arise.
6. Gratitude journal
Keeping a written account of what you are thankful for can help you keep a positive outlook on life. Journaling doesn’t have to take long, either. You could start or end your day by listing five things you are grateful for, and you will likely feel more positive and optimistic because of it.
7. Take time for yourself
Just because you are available, that does not mean you owe that time to anyone. If you are tired after a long work week and don’t feel like agreeing to those dinner plans your coworker brought up, then politely tell them another time would work better. Your time is your own, and you should respect your inner needs to decompress.
8. Turn it off
We all know the tolls that our smartphones can take on us. Physically, there’s the harsh blue light, but mentally, there are countless effects, such as loneliness and depression, that also hurt us (5). It’s a small step, but choose either the first ten minutes or the last ten minutes of your day to be smartphone-free.
9. Clean your house
One of the most simple ways we can care for ourselves is by surrounding ourselves with a clean home. Cleaning can be relaxing in itself, once you start to see the results, and you will feel a sense of pride when your space reflects a life you want to live.
10. Don’t weigh yourself
For some of us, the scale is seen as the enemy. This should never be the case, as your body is what gets you through each and every day. If the scale doesn’t make you feel your best, then simply don’t use it. If a medical professional thinks you need to be weighed regularly, you can have it done at appointments with them. Making healthy choices doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll become your goal weight, so you shouldn’t let the scale get you down.